Sheepyard Flat to Tunnel Bend return

Sheepyard Flat Campsite, Brocks Road, Howqua Hills VIC

Sheepyard Flat to Tunnel Bend return

Sheepyard Flat Campsite, Brocks Road, Howqua Hills VIC

Staff Pick
1 h 21 m
5.39 km
Intermediate

A nice walk that follows the Howqua River upstream. In the warmer months you can see lots of people camping on the flats along the river.

Sheepyard Flat to Tunnel Bend return

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Summary

A nice walk that follows the Howqua River upstream. In the warmer months you can see lots of people camping on the flats along the river.

Description

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This intermediate 5km return walk in Victoria Alpine region follows the Howqua River from Sheepyard Flat to Fry’s Flat Tunnel Bend (1.5 hours at a gentle pace).

Before setting out for this walk, check for seasonal road closures near Sheepyard Flat and Tunnel Bend.
In August 2023 Noonam's Flat Track (Points of Interest 6 + 7) was still closed for winter. You could continue along Brooks Road to Tunnel Bend instead.

In the warmer months there are lots of opportunities to stop for a swim. You could even take a lilo and flout back downstream.

Most of this information is from the Parks Victoria link above.

The Howqua Hills Historic Area is located 45 minutes drive from Mansfield via Merrijig. Take the Howqua Track, a gravel road 3km past Merrijig on the Mount Buller Road.

Walkers can enjoy the Howqua Hills Heritage Trail with its self-guided interpretive panels.

There a few spots to stop for a dip if its warmer and some toilets (long drop) at the various camp sites along the way.

Tunnel Bend is named after the 100m tunnel built in 1884 as a link between the Howqua River and a 4km long hand cut water race. The tunnel entrance can be seen near the base of the steps at Tunnel Bend.

The remains of the water race can be seen above the road between Tunnel Bend and Sheepyard Flat. It was constructed to carry water to power the “Hanney” waterwheel.

The “Hanney” was 63 feet (18 metres) in diameter and drove the crushers which broke the ore into a suitable size for smelting in the furnace.

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Points of Interest

1. Sheepyard Flat

Lots of camp spot around here. Most campers are happy campers but you do get the odd selfish, inconsiderate person, particularly in busy times who plays loud electronic music into the night.

2. Misty mornings

The river can look very beautiful on cool mornings.

3. Swimming spots

Lots of swimming spots and not even early November mountain water temperatures put these kids off!

4. Higher up

At a few spots the road gets up a little higher. Sometimes you can even see fish swimming from high if the sun is at the right angle.

5. The river

This photo might not be in the exact spot, but you get the idea, its beautiful.

6. Tunnel opening

On a sunny day, the view out is wonderful.

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7. The tunnel

You might want to come prepared with a torch if you want to walk the tunnel


Features

Public toilets Public toilets
Historical interest Historical interest
Nature trail Nature trail
Lake, creek, river Lake, creek, river
Park / Garden Park / Garden