10 January 2022

Trekking to Waterfalls in Otway over Xmas & New Year 2022

The driveWest Gate Bridge (M1) - Geelong bypass (A1) - Birregurra turn off (C119) - 
Forrest (C119).

Otway Ranges:  Short Walks & Day Walks
  • Stevensons Falls:  From the turn off, the road down to Stevensons Falls is narrow, winding and steep and can be slippery after rain.  Drive safely.  There is a free camping area, which is located before the turn onto the road to the falls carpark with no facilities.  The 4.6km return walk from the campground took about one and a half hours.  Shorter walk return (500m) option is from the falls day carpark
Stevensons Falls video clip in 1 minute
  • Hopetoun Falls is located in Hopetoun Falls Reserve on Binns Road and is signposted.  The car park is small.  Please park responsibly.  There are no picnic facilities.  Take your rubbish out with you.
  • Beauchamp Falls:  Also located on Binns Road.  A new free car camping area was provided.  There are a few grassy walk-in sites.  BYO water.  I had soup and cold salad for dinner while the sky put on a show.  The missing phone caused some stress and a late night as a result.  However, I was so happy when it was in sight.  It was where it should be.  How couldn't I see it? 
Beauchamp Falls and the new camping area

A short video clip of Hopetoun Falls and Beauchamp Falls
Front pix: top of Hopetoun Falls from the viewing platform near the car park
Post of the Otway in Dec 2014
  • Triplet Falls & Little Aire FallsThe start was from Triplet Falls Carpark / Phillips Track with toilets.  It is signposted.  The Triplet Falls loop (1hr / 2km) was closed; hence, there was no access to the bottom of the falls and it took about 20 minutes or so to reach the viewing platform of the triplet cascades.
    The Little Aire Falls Walk start was just off the Triplet Falls track near the carpark.  The notice of 'the track was open' was at the junction of the two tracks.  It was about 2.5km one way and pleasant to walk through rainforest.  It tooks about 1hr to reach a viewing platform and it was worth the walk-in.  The return tooks about 45minutes.

GPS Track to Triplet Falls and Little Aire Falls

An original sawmill site seen near the beginning of the walking track to Triplet Falls.
Little Aire Falls from the viewing platform about 30 m away

A short video clip of Triplet Falls and Little Aire Falls.
  • Mariners FallsThe Mariners Falls Track is off the official list of Walks & Waterfalls.  It has been closed for two years.  A few sections of the track were filled with blackberries.  Second attempt in long pants and garden gloves was a success.  I thank to a few walkers who started earlier and 'cleared' the path.  It's not a good news that it's permanently closed.  But, I can understand why... 
Blackberries were real pain (L), Falls Creek (R)

A short video clip of trekking to Mariners Falls
  • Blanket Bay to Parker Hill (2 hrs / 4km One way): part of Great Ocean Walk through coastal forests.  The lookout before the descend to Parker Inlet was awesome.  This section of GOW was suggested by a local I met at Paradise Picnic Area.  In fact, I had done pack carrying this track several times and for sure at least once the GOW in FULL (95.8 km, extended pack carrying).  The GOW hikers reminded me of what I have achieved in life.
Blanket Bay (L &R), Parker Hill from a viewing platform.  A local was happy for a pose 

A short video of trekking from Blanket Bay to Parker Hill and return
  • Rainbows FallsStart and finish at Cape Otway Lighthouse Carpark.  It is signposted (5.5km / one way).  This walk (part of GOW) provides great coastal views.  However, soft sand can make it a retiring walk.  Check out tide conditions before taking the walk.  If unsure, there is an option to walk to Rainbow Falls via the inland path, which is signposted at a sandy track junction. 
The dune from a boardwalk down to Station Beach.  Almost there!

 Station Beach and Glenaire Beach from the track
  • Aire River & Glenaire BeachStart and finish at Aire River Bridge via Hordern Vale Road.  Walk along a 4WD track to the Aire River mouth and Glenaire Beach.  It was a warm day and the river path was so inviting; therefore, I 'missed' the loop leading to the Escarpment Lookout.  The signpost of 'Escarpment Walk' on the left near the start had been removed!  There were a few canoes at the river mouth and a few flying fishing guys at the beach, where I enjoyed barefoot walking.  On the way out, I didn't bother to put them on till I could not stand the heat of the soft sand track.  It was just a further 50m or so to get back to the car.  Now, I can understand why they wanted to drive their 4WD in & out, even though the track is only about 1km one way.
Aire River and Aire River Mouth (R)

Castle Cove from a viewing platform on Great Ocean Rd, 
next door to Air River, Air River Mouth and Glenaire Beach
  • The Gables & Wreck Beach:  Start and finish at The Gables Carpark via Moonlight Head Road.  The Gable short walk (20 minutes / 800m return) takes you to a lookout with spectacular views of high sea cliffs.  The anchors of the Marie Gabrielle & Fiji shipwrecks can be viewed when tide and sea conditions permitting.  There are more than 350 steps to descend and turn right on reaching the beach.  If low tide, the anchors can be in view from the start at the beach.  A binocular could be put in good use.
Views from Gable Lookout

Wreck Beach
Lorne Forest / GOR
  • Carisbrook Falls: is signposted on Great Ocean Road and a 10 minutes walk from the carpark offers views over Carisbrook Creek and good views of the falls
Carisbrook Falls (L), GOR from Sheoak Falls Track, Sheoak Falls

Photo of me was taken on the second last day of Year 2021 by one of the two ladies from Cheltenham.  It seems that I have seen more of the Otway than they have.  Information of interesting places were given out and they would not have any problem to travel to those in a jeep.  Their interest was to find some waterholes for a swim; but, my poor memory failed to give the answer.

A short video clip (just over 1 minute) of Sheoak Falls
Post from the visit to Sheoak Falls in 2014

Revisit to Kalimna Falls, Henderson Falls & Phantom Falls
A nice, shady and quiet spot for a meal or two before trekking to these waterfalls.

Sheoak Picnic Area
Lower and Upper Kalimna Falls

Henderson Falls and Phantom Falls

While most of holiday makers were enjoying sunbathing at the beach and/or a dip in the sea, I was myself taking all in.  The water was so inviting and I hesitated to leave.  

Kalimna Falls, Henderson Falls and Phantom Falls video clip in 2 minutes

The last day of the year in daylight saving, I left the crowds on the Great Ocean Road and Lorne and took time to drive home.