This walk starts and ends in the Wonthaggi State Coal Mine Historic Reserve. Baxter's Loop walk takes you through heathland, past historic ruins, to Baxter's Wetland and bird hide.
From the Tent Town carpark go to the track information sign mapping the different walks. Follow the red walk, called Baxter's Loop track, which takes you through this former mining area to Baxter's Wetland.
By Bicycle - From Wonthaggi, follow West Area Road and Tent Town will be on your right.
By Car - From Melbourne, Wonthaggi is 130km south east via the South Gippsland and Bass highways. The car park at Tent Town is on West Area Road, beyond the Wonthaggi Hospital.
The building in the distance was a sorting plant for the coal, operating from 1909 to 1968. For hundreds of 14 year old boys this was their first place of work as they picked stones out of the coal.
This is where it all began. Mining commenced in 1909, producing 780,000 tons before closing in 1914. Underground workings were very shallow, evident by the depressions in this area.
Keep a lookout for this sign post. The red arrow points right, so take this short but narrow and overgrown path.
You may encounter a natural obstacle on this track as it takes you into the heart of the heathland.
A 3km rail track where skips were hauled overland by cable. Have a look for the cable on the ground. Pine trees line both sides of the track.
After you cross the road there is an option to walk to Baxters Beach. The red track to Baxters Wetland is clearly signed and heads to the right.
Together these mines covered an area of almost 200 hectares. Thats 160 underground cricket grounds! The coal has gone but this concrete shaft remains.
Nesting boxes and permanent water make this a perfect home for many birds and water fowl. Watch out for Pacific Black Ducks, Purple Swamphens and White-faced Herons.
Leave the street and follow this gravel track back into the heathland. On the right is the Cinder Loop track which formed part of a horse drawn tramway used for transporting bricks.
The site where 12 miners first lived when the State Coal Mine opened in 1909. By mid 1910 the township of Wonthaggi was established with the construction of 100 miners' cottages.