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Posts Tagged ‘walks with children’

ImageWell, I found out today from my publishers that the release date for Melbourne for Dogs is now expected to be March 2014, instead of Christmas – bummer! So to console myself, I headed up to Bacchus Marsh to see my folks and went for a gorgeous spring stroll along the riverside track which runs from Peppertree Park (off Grant Street, beside the swimming pool – good off-street parking), upstream beside picturesque Werribee River for about 2km, narrowing right at the end until you can cross to the other side at the old ford and return on the opposite bank, through parks and picnic grounds. It’s a gentle and well maintain path and very popular with local dog walkers (on lead) and cyclists.  There are great views up the valley and escarpment which mark the entrance to the geological wonder that becomes Werribee Gorge. This is an easy and pretty walk for those with kids, with opportunities to splash in the water and plenty of shade under the River Red Gums.  It’s also suitable for bikes and scooters. Combined with a visit to Bacchus Marsh’s famous orchards or pick-you-own berry farms, this makes for an easy and interesting day out, just 45 minutes from Melbourne on the Western Highway.

ImageAs a kid, we lived on a farm outside of Bacchus Marsh, which bordered Werribee River, and I remember impressive floods every couple of years, but many years ago, the base of the river was graded and cleared to allow for better flow during flood times, so it’s rare that a flood breaks the banks these days, though it did just a couple of years ago, when the path had to be rebuilt. I love walking in the spring – the sun is warm but not hot on your back, the wildflowers are out – wattle is a riot of colour and scent just now, and the skies are a lovely blue.  Suddenly, you can breathe again after the grey and chill of winter.  Glorious.

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Coloured slate on the slopes of Anakie Gorge, near Nelson's Lookout

Set off for a wander through Anakie Gorge, in the Brisbane Ranges, on Friday, expecting a very wet day, and was pleasantly surprised with just a few spots of rain and even some lovely blue sky!  A short section of the Gorge Walk remains in need of repair following flash flooding in January 2011, but is still entirely passable and an easy walk, though your feet would definitely get wet if there had been any water in the creek, as there are numerous creek crossings. Deb and I decided to vary the simple return walk with a short, steep scramble up to Nelson’s lookout, the path becoming indistinct in places as it traversed some beautiful coloured slate.  Anakie Gorge is incredibly ancient – geologists estimate that some of the folded rock formation in the gorge were formed around 500 million years ago – almost as far back as we go as a planet! The 3km long Gorge track brings you out at the lovely Stoney Creek picnic grounds, which was totally rebuilt following the devastating bush-fires in 2006. The manna gums and other flora has regenerated lushly since then, and the Gorge remains a really beautiful, very wild, and highly accessible walk – a terrific one to do with kids.

Stoney Creek Picnic grounds at the end of the Anakie Gorge Track

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