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  • Length: 18.5km

  • Duration: 6hrs

  • Grade: 3

  • Style: Circuit

  • Start: Lake Daylesford

  • End: Lake Daylesford

  • Closest Town: Daylesford

  • Location: Hepburn Regional Park

  • Distance from state capital: 112km

  • State: VIC

  • Latitude: -37.347933

  • Longitude: 144.137181

Daylesford Lakes and Falls is a 18.5km, grade 3 Circuit hike located in Hepburn Regional Park Victoria. The hike should take approximately 6hrs to complete.

Summary

The Daylesford Lakes and Falls circuit commences at Lake Daylesford. Follow the trail on the south-western side of the lake and walk along the dam wall turning north onto the Peace Mile track. Continue around the Lake for 1km turning left up the steep footpath track to join the Ballan-Daylesford Road. Turn left, cross the main road and walk to the Cornish Hill Lookout via Stanbridge Street, Argus Road and Orford Street. Follow the Great Dividing Trail (distinctive markers with yellow tops and black directional arrows) for 150m to a T junction and turn right continuing along the vehicle track for another 200m to where the trail turns right.

After crossing a creek/gully follow the track up the hill past a huge mullock heap to an access road. Turn left and walk briefly uphill and turn right to walk along the old railway easement passing grand entrances of several ‘retreats’. Continue past the Strawbale retreat for about 400m to where the Great Dividing Trail leaves the railway easement on the right and descend 50 m to a water race. Turn left (south) and follow the track for 500m to the Jubilee Lake Bridge. Continue south along the race to the Jubilee Lake viewing platform. This is a good spot for a break and admiring the lake which was constructed in 1860.

After the break follow a sealed road to Lake Road and turn right and cross the road. There is an unsealed track 50m on the left on the continuation of the railway easement. Walk on the Wombat Forest track (south) for 1km to where the signposted Great Dividing Trail leaves the rail trail easement to the left. Stay on the easement heading south for a further 1.2km and walk a short distance up to a gas pipeline easement. Follow the Star/Paddock Track south for almost 1km to a major track crossroads. Turn west and continue through two open gates along Manna Gum Road which becomes Shanahans Lane at the junction with Foxs Lane on the right. Walk on to the Ballan-Daylesford Road and when you can see traffic in both directions cross the road to the well signposted Sailors Falls recreational area. This is a suitable place for lunch.

After lunch leave the falls, head 300m along Sailors Creek on the Wallaby Track and across the bridge to Sailors Falls Mineral Springs. Follow the water race north for 450m to join the Goldfields Track. Turn right and walk down the gully for about 700 m to the junction with the Three Lost Children Walk. Continue along the gully until reaching a vehicle track. Turn left and start walking back towards Lake Daylesford via the well signposted Goldfields Track in a north-westerly direction for about 1.2km, ignoring any turnoffs.

Cross Sailors Creek heading right at the Y track junction downhill for 170m to cross Old Tom Creek. Head uphill on the track which turns east and becomes Black Jack Track and then turns onto a northerly direction. After 2km leave Black Jack Track and continue to follow the signposted Goldfields Track down the Sailors Creek Valley. After 230m cross Sailors Creek for a brief steep climb and flat stroll to Old Ballarat Road. Turn right and walk 100m along the road turning left onto Goo Goo Road. Continue past the big house then down the track for 130m to a signposted walking track junction. Turn right (east) and follow the water race along Wombat Creek past the Sutton No.1 Spring and the Central Springs Reserve and up the bitumen track past the spillway to rejoin Lake Daylesford at the start of the walk.

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Getting there

From Melbourne head west via the M1, M80 and the Western Freeway/Highway (M8) and take the C141 exit, turning north to Daylesford. On entering Daylesford turn left onto Bleakley Street, cross the lake causeway and turn right immediately into the Lake Daylesford car park.

Tips

  • There are old mine shafts and a steep track descent where poles are recommended.
    Total distance: 18495 m
    Max elevation: 663 m
    Min elevation: 526 m
    Total climbing: 433 m
    Total descent: -432 m
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