A beautiful walk in Sherbrooke forest in the Dandenong Ranges. Most of the walk is through Mountain Ash and Messmate Stringybark forest. Steep sections on Paddy Road and Welch Track.
Please refer to Parks Victoria link above for more detailed information. This walk is walk 4 in the park notes.
Navigation in the park is easy as all junctions are well signposted.
1. From Belgrave station follow the exit sign to Old Monbulk Road and turn left when you leave the station (you can also follow exit sign to Belgrave Road - turning right when you leave station if you would like to stop at a cafe before beginning!).
2. Follow Old Monbulk Road across the roundabout, across the Puffing Billy train tracks, up the hill and around the corner where the road turns into a gravel track. At the end of this track you will see the DANDENONG RANGES NATIONAL PARK sign.
3. Past this sign there is a gate on your left that says 'Managment Vehicles Only'. Pass around this gate onto the Coles Ridge Track. It's a wide track that goes very gradually uphill.
4. Stay on the Coles Ridge Track all the way to the Grants Picnic Ground.
5. There is a big cafe here where you can stop for lunch.
6. From the cafe continue 200m north through the car park where you will find the start of the Lyrebird Walk. The Lyrebird Walk splits to a left and right track which meet a little further along. The right track is more interesting.
7. Further along, turn right onto the Newmann Track (sign posted junction)
8. Leave the Newmann Track and Turn right onto the Paddy Track (sign posted junction).
9. Leave the Paddy Track and continue straight onto the Welch Track. The last part of the Welch Track is the only real uphill effort of the whole walk - it's not too long but you'll feel like a rest when you arrive back where you started at the entrance to the National Park. There is a simple wooden bench here.
10. Return to Belgrave Station the way you came down Old Monbulk Road.
Hop off at Belgrave station to begin your walk. Belgrave is a Zone 2 station easily accessible from the city.
If you're in luck, you might catch the Puffing Billy leaving the station!
Cross the train tracks, carefully of course and preferably not in the path of an oncoming steam train.
A sure sign that you're on the right path!
Your walk in the Dandenongs starts here! The gate at the start of Coles Ridge Track leads you in the right direction. Don't forget to breathe in the fresh air.
The trees along this area are particularly scenic, particularly in the morning light.
No chance of getting lost in the woods with these many signs pointing you in the right direction.
More ferns and dappled sunlight on leaves.
Beautiful views all along the walk. A perfect spot to stop and see if you can hear the resident lyrebirds.
If only forests like these were all over Victoria!
Make sure you fill your lungs with as much forest air as you can before leaving the park. Better still, come back for another visit soon!