Lake Track, Lysterfield VIC 3156, Australia
This walk is part of the Heart Foundation's Green Walks in the Park Program. Follow the link above for more information.
Lysterfield Visitor Area is an expansive grassy and tree-filled area for picnics, BBQs and games, next to the carpark. There are also two large toilet and shower blocks and a drinking water fountain. The café is also an information centre.
Seating is plentiful all along the tracks, provided by Community Correctional Services in partnership with Holmesglen and Parks Victoria.
By Bike: The park entrance is accessible by bike.
By Bus: The 695F bus travels along Belgrave-Hallam Rd.
By Car: Lysterfield Park entrance is an easy 40 mins from Melbourne. Take the Monash Fwy, exit at Heatherton Rd, turn left onto Belgrave-Hallam Rd, then left onto Horswood Road (Melways: 108 D2).
By Horse: There are several equestrian trails leading into and around the park.
For detailed Parks Victoria information about the park visit http://bit.ly/q1KD9g.
The walk starts and ends at the Lysterfield Visitor Area. Walk south towards the dam wall, either along the beach or via the track through the picnic area. The track will take you past the café/information centre and there is a bridge over the beach to get to the top of the dam wall. If you walk along the beach there are a few steps up to the dam wall.
The track around the lake is shared with bicycles so it is wide and flat, and has only one very short gradient. The main track is easily followed and marked with a green sign called Lake Circuit. There are many trails leading off it if you wish to explore further, and this walk follows two of them.
The first trail off the main track you can take is called Acacia Nature Walk and is to the right. It runs parallel to the main track but is closer to the lake and takes you through an indigenous stand of vegetation, similar to what once populated Melbourne. Surrounded by Eucalypts, She-Oaks and Acacias, this peaceful spot is home to many animal residents of the park. Can you see an Echidna or Swamp wallaby?
At the end of this trail there is a large grassy area and a seat, a perfect picnic site if you packed your lunch.
Back on the main track continue along until you see a sign for the Short Cut Walk, heading off to the right, which curves around the top of the lake. You can keep going further north here if you wish to see more of this 1,668 hectare park.
Continue along the east side of the lake, notice the changing vegetation and keep your eyes and ears open for Parrots and Bell miners. There are 172 species of birds recorded in this park. Spend some time in the bird hide and you might catch a glimpse of a Honeyeater, Wren or even the migratory Japanese snipe.
The next trail off the main track is to the right, through a conservation zone and is for walkers only. Both tracks lead back to the visitor area and carpark.