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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Exploring the Silvan Forest and Stonyford Creek

On Monday afternoon July 27, 2009, I ventured out to the Silvan Forest, adjacent to the Silvan Reservoir Park.

The purpose of my visit was to explore the course of the Stonyford Creek - the Reservoir was built across this creek in the years 1911-1914. The Creek started on high ground near what is now Mt Evelyn, then flowed into the Olinda Creek.

When the Reservoir was built, the Stonyford Creek appeared to have been blocked off near its source. Only a small section of it remains today, winding through preserved forest around the Nature Trail, taking outflow from the Reservoir into the Olinda Creek, at the Stonyford Rd bridge.

The embankments of the old Creek are still visible, but heavily overgrown - it came out near the former Quarry.

My trip was a 4 km forest circuit, starting at the Overflow Car Park on Stonyford Rd, opposite the main gates to the Park, then along the Olinda Creek Track. This joined the Grey Gum Track, then passing the perimeter of Melbourne Water's large purification plant nearby, and back to the car.

Part way along the hike, the rains came down - the tracks turned into quagmires of thick red mud - I was not dressed suitably for this, with only a thin jacket, and my camera and I became drenched! I did my research into the origins of the Creek, despite the rain!

A Kookaburra started laughing at me from his vantage point up a tree next to the Olinda Creek Track

Silvan Reservoir has only a small catchment of its own, and is mainly a holding/distribution point, fed from the Cardinia and O'Shannassy Reservoirs. Underground pipes carry water from Silvan to storage basins at Preston and Surrey Hills, the latter about 1 km from my backyard!

See the complete set of Photos!

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