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Update January 2017

 

Gippsland Discovery Trail

 

This trail links the East Gippsland Rail Trail with Lakes Entrance through Colquhoun State Forest.  You can begin and end the ride in Lakes Entrance by riding out on Colquhoun Road near the eastern end of the town. The bitumen ends at Scriveners Road. 

 

The trail begins here on your left. This is also an alternative starting point. From here the trail runs parallel to Scriveners road dropping down steeply to Little Mississippi Creek. 

 

Here you head north up Tramline Track and Mississippi Creek Trail about 13 k to the rail trail. Turn right down the rail trail to Colquhoun Road. After a short distance turn right down Uncles Road. Follow that back to Scriveners Road.

 

Alternative starting points are Forest Tech on the Princes Highway about 10 k on the western side of Lakes Entrance. Another is Log Crossing Picnic Area. It is signposted about 2 kilometers from Forest Tech. 

 

The ride is of a medium standard. From Scriveners Road north the trail follows an attractive creek valley. Returning via Uncles Road it is nice forest scenery mostly along a ridge line with a few short decents. For serious riders Colquhoun Mountain Bike Park is just past Forest Tech on Bruce Road. 

 

We recommend you get a map at the Lakes Entrance Visitor Centre near the roundabout on the Melbourne side of the town.

 

UPDATE OCTOBER 2016


'Light to Light[1]' walk, Boyd's Tower to Greencape (map[2])
We found October to be a good time to see whales dolphins and seals.
A shuttle service from Greencape is sometimes available for walkers doing the 'Light to Light' walk. Contact the Merimbula office of the National Parks and Wildlife Service (02 6495 5000) for details. There is now a foot track[3] linking Leatherjacket Bay and Farm Cove camp. This starts at the back of Leatherjacket campsite. It is a more scenic alternative to the 4wd track which it runs parallel to. After Farm Cove camp the track onto Saltwater Creek goes via Mowarry Beach[4]. (Look for the wooden steps at both ends of the beach.) Beyond Mowarry Point the track remains unchanged from our description in the 2004 edition of 'Walking the Wilderness Coast'. Walking Trail from Eden to Fisheries Beach Called the 'Bundian Way' this indigenous trail currently[5] goes from Cocora Beach in Eden to Quarantine Bay. It is planned[6] to go around Twofold Bay to Fisheries Beach and from there ultimately north west to Mount Kosciusko. The walk so far is of a high standard.  More information can be obtained from the Eden Tourist Information Centre (0264961953). While in Eden another nice walk can he had on the boardwalk and walkway around Lake Curalo.
ELECTRONIC MAPS
Electronic maps are a very useful electronic alternative to a physical map. A friend recently mapped the 'Light to Light' walk on 'Open Street Map'. www.openstreetmap.org[7] Electronic maps are often more up to date than paper maps and typically can show your exact location using your phone or tablet's GPS. You will not always have phone coverage so you should use an off line map and download the map before starting walking. Mapping apps based on www.openstreetmap.org[8] such as OsmAnd[9] often are best for walking and cycling trails. KAYAK THE TOWAMBA RIVER Kiah Wilderness Tours[10] offer guided  kayak tours of the scenic Towamba River.
Phone 0429 961 047. They also offer a service on the 'Light to Light' trail meeting walkers at access points along the trail. They transport all the gear needed to have a 5 star walking experience.

They offer another way to experience the trail. Links: ------

[1] https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/Walking-tracks/Light-to-Light-walk
[2] http://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=12/-37.1718/150.0070
[3] http://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=15/-37.1327/149.9773
[4] http://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=17/-37.13982/149.99255
[5] http://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=16/-37.0738/149.8916
[6] http://www.bundianway.com.au/Maps.htm
[7] http://www.openstreetmap.org/
[8] http://www.openstreetmap.org/
[9] http://osmand.net/
[10] http://kiahwildernesstours.com.au/

Update December 2015

We walked from Thurra River east to Mallacoota. The track into the Gale Hill campsite was marked by 2 poles in the dune. It is slightly overgrown. The boardwalk is partly covered by sand and vegetation. It seems to no longer be part of the route into or out of the campsite. Water was plentiful. Water was also plentiful at various points around Petrel Point.

The beginning of the western end of the Petrel Point to Fly Cove track was also marked by a pole in the sand dune. Once over the dune the track between markers was in parts slightly difficult to follow.

The track into Red River Camp is about 200 meters up the beach from the Inlet towards Sandpatch Point. The track from Red River Camp to Benedore River and on to Seal Creek were very good being recently slashed and well signposted.

The camp on the western side of Benedore River is now best accessed by walking around the side of the estuary.

Bike riding in Mallacoota 

Mallacoota has 2 excellent bike riding tracks.

The first is completely flat and mainly sealed. It is a 60-90 minute return ride around the lakes edge between Buckland Drive and Bucklands Jetty. It is a great way to explore Mallacoota and Karbethong. The trail ends at the beginning of the Captains Creek Walking Track. The walk is about 6 km through the Narrows  to Double Creek Arm.

The second track is a very pleasant ride through coastal bushland on a good quality dirt/gravel track. The first section starts on Genoa Road opposite the Health Centre. Here it is a shared path known as Casuarina walk. Look out for walkers and approach corners with care by ringing your bell. It takes you through to Betka Road then continues on the other side through heathlandto Betka River. The combined ride takes 30-40 minutes one way and is mainly sealed.

To continue, ride across the bridge and along Betka Road to Betka Beach Picnic ground. From there the ride continues to Secret and Pebbly beach with great views up and down the coast. Again, this is a shared path so watch out for walkers. This bit will take about an hour return. A shorter alternative would be to drive to Betka River and begin your ride from there.

Update January 2012

Between December 27, 2010 and January 3rd 2011 we walked from Cape Conran to Mallacoota.   

Also, between January 3rd and January 11, 2012 we walked from Mallacoota to Eden.

On those trips the following changes were noted; Changes to transport services are also noted below. Please note: The pages referred to below are from the third edition, 2004.


Update: Cape Conran to Mallacoota

2010 was a below average rainfall year in coastal far East Gippsland despite above average rainfall in the rest of the state. Some of the points below reflect well on water availability in a ‘dry year’.

[1] Re Dock Inlet page 30. There is now an official campsite at Dock Inlet. It is near the north east corner of the Inlet. The best access is via the Yerung River/Pearl Point track. There is room for 6-8 hike tents. Access from the beach is via two white posts in the sand dune and the foot track around the eastern end of the Inlet.

[2] Re the Sydenham Inlet campsite page 31. The campsite referred to as the ‘Blowhole’ has grown over. However, by walking through the ‘blowhole’, tent sites can still be found on the edge of the Inlet. Alternatively, we have twice camped in a sand gully on the western side of the entrance to the Inlet. Freshwater sometimes runs down this gully.

[3] Re Clinton Rocks Creek campsite page 32. There was more than adequate water there despite being a dry year. Five minutes further east, we found a small freshwater lake in the dunes behind the beach.

[4] Re water availability Day 4 page 32. There is a small soak on the western side of Point Hicks next to the stairs. Some water might be available here.

[5] Re the Gale Hill campsite page 34. There was no water at the camp. However, there were freshwater pools at the back of the rocks around Petrel Point. These continued past the eastern side of the Point.

[6] Re Rame Head track page 34. The beginning of the track from the western side of Rame Head to Wingan was difficult to access because of storm damage. Access is now just before the large rock referred to in the book. The first bit of the track was at that time a bit overgrown.

[7] Re water at Wingan camp page 35. The water supply at Wingan was not working due to the dry year. We recommend you ring Parks Victoria Mallacoota Office and ask about this before starting your walk. (03 5161 9500)

[8] Re getting water on Red River track page 37. This track is now badly overgrown. The water we collected there on January 1st was slightly brackish. The track between Red River Camp and the eastern side of Sandpatch Point is overgrown in parts and in need of maintenance.

[9] The water next to the stairs on the eastern side of Sandpatch Point (page 37) was good in quality and quantity despite having a small catchment in a dry year.

[10] The track between Benedore River and Seal Creek was easy to walk and follow because of new signs and also because a wildfire went through this area in early 2010 burning trackside vegetation to ground level. It may be a different story from 2012 onwards.

[11] A walking track between Mallacoota township and Pebbly Beach is now under construction. When complete groups will be able to walk all the way to Mallacoota without having to do a road bash into town.


Update: Mallacoota to Eden

2011 was a wet year. On our January 2012 walk we found water at all campsites between Mallacoota and Eden.

[1] The second route from Lake Wau Wauka campsite to Cape Howe via the sand dunes which is described on page 44 has grown over with thick scrub. The best access to the dunes is now from the beach just before Iron Prince Reef.

[2] The border cairn at Cape Howe which is pictured on the front cover of ‘Walking the Wilderness Coast’ has gone and has been replaced by a line of 3 tall metal markers.

[3] Harry’s Hut on Nadgee River has been renovated. It is a worthwhile side trip.

[4] Access to and from the beach to Little River campsite in Nadgee can vary depending on the water level in the estuary. The traverse around the base of the rocks from the campsite to the beach is short but can be a bit tricky with a pack. There is a 'dry feet' alternative' with starts behind the toilet. From the beach this track goes up a steep gully.

 [5] The Merrica River campsite described on page 46 has changed. In addition to the small campsite in the trees near the end of the fire trail there is another campsite about 300 meters upstream at the bend of the river. There is also a campsite on the northern side of the river in the tea tree at the bottom of the spur (Narrabarba GR: 614680)

[6] On page 48 reference is made to an overgrown 4wd track which follows a ‘meandering’ path to Greencape road. This track is now so overgrown that it is now unusable. As an alternative we used the spur which intercepts the Greencape road just north of the Disaster Bay lookout.

[7] Bittangabee and Saltwater Camping areas do not have tent sites dedicated to overnight hikers. This means that bookings are essential if your walk is in a peak period.

[8] The campsite we refer to on pages 50, 51 and 52 as ‘Farm Cove’ does not have an official name according to the Narrabarba 1:25.000 map

[9] The New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service has new signs at the northern end of the farmland just before the Farm Cove campsite.

One sign directs you down to Mowarry Beach and suggests that Mowarry Point is the peninsula of rock next to it at GR: 658858. This may cause the confusion as the Kiah map labels the island at GR: 670851 as Mowarry Point.

[10] The track between Farm Cove and Boyd’s Tower is now less on old 4wd tracks and more on dedicated walking trails. As a result it is good walking in attractive scenery. The signposting is good.

Update: Transport

Sadly Tony Harrison of Orbost passed away in 2006. Tony was a great ambassador for the eco-tourism potential of the Wilderness Coast. Fortunately, Snowy River Bus Lines continues to offer a good service to groups beginning or finishing their walks near Orbost. (PH: 0351541628)

Tony Grey no longer transports into or out of Mallacoota. However, Steve Waixel of Mallacoota Explorer Tours offers an excellent alternative. PH: 03 5158 0116 or 0408 315 615

Edwards Bus Lines in Eden have been taken over by Deans Bus Lines of Pambula. Their phone number is 02 6495 6452. They can pick up large groups from Eden and take them to Red Point or do the reverse. Steve Waixel of Mallacoota also picks up groups at Red Point. (see number above)

 Eden / Merimbula Taxi Service (02 64950259) has a 10 seat taxi. The Coachman's Rest Motel in Eden also has a Mini Bus which is sometimes available. Phone: 02 6496 1900.

Update: Water taxis (Wonboyn and Mallacoota)

Simon Buckley of Mallacoota also transports groups across Mallacoota Inlet to or from Lake View on the eastern side of the inlet. Contact Simon on 03 51 580 109 or  0408408094.

The caravan park at Wonboyn no longer provides transport across the Lake. Fortunately, Jim  or Pam O'Dyer of Wonboyn General Store can help groups get across the lake. However, this is dependent on the time of year and how busy they are. Alternatively, they might be able find someone else who can do it for you. (Phone: 02 64 969 134).

Update: Where to leave your car?

If starting your walk in Wonboyn Jim O’Dyer (above) will look after your car. Steve Waixell might also be able to do the same if you are starting or ending your walk in Mallacoota.

Update: Mountain biking

Since writing the third edition the Rail Trail between Nowa Nowa and Orbost has been completed. It takes about 4 hours. If staying in Orbost in a good additional ride is to ride up the Rail Trail to Simpson's Creek Road. Next, follow Simpson's Creek Road then turn right again into Bete Belong Road which will take you back to Orbost.

If you have specific questions about anything in this update or any other questions email me at pcook@wildcoast.net.au

Happy walking,

Peter Cook

 
 Last update 19 th August 2006 Portal engine source code is copyright 2006 by WildCoast. All Rights Reserved