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Lerderderg State Park...
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This hike starts at Goodmans Weir and follows a gravel road to the Lerderderg River diversion tunnel exit point. From here the remainder of the hike is completely off trail and does not follow any marked route. Follow the Goodman Creek for a short distance until an obvious Ricky ridge is reached.
Turn west and follow the ridge through dense bush until you reach the summit. Elevation should be approximately 320m at this point. Head north from this point through the dense bush following kangaroo trails to aid your progression.
After about 500m the bush starts to open up and you will find progress easier as you cross two narrow gullies. After the second gully is crossed turn north east and follow kangaroo trails across a bluff to reach the creek below. Once you reach the creek turn right to follow it along its length back to Goodmans Weir. If you had turned left on reaching the creek you would travel only 200m before reaching a vehicle ford at Holts Lane (a suitable exit point).
About the region
Rising in the Great Dividing Range, the Lerderderg River has cut a 300 metre deep gorge through sandstone and slate, almost bisecting the park. The park has a wide variety of vegetation and wildlife and some interesting relics of gold mining. Lerderderg State Park encompasses scenic and geological gorge formations surrounding the Lerderderg River as well as the volcanic cone of Mount Blackwood. The adjacent and separate block called the Pyrete Range forms part of the park. The Lerderderg is known for its remote setting and the 300m deep Lerderderg River gorge is a dominant feature. Private land abuts the park to the south and the Wombat State forest abuts to the north and west.
Lerderderg State Park (incorporating the former Pyrete State Forest) is a 14,250-hectare park located between Bacchus Marsh and Blackwood, an hour's drive from Melbourne, Australia. There are several maintained tracks for walking through the park and camping is allowed.
The park is named for the Lerderderg River which has cut the 300 metre deep Lerderderg Gorge through sandstone and slate, almost bisecting the park. Parks Victoria maintains six designated walks: three short walks of 3.5 km or less; Blackwood-O'Briens Crossing and return (22 km); O'Briens Crossing-Cowan Track loop (14 km); and the overnight walk O'Briens Crossing to Mackenzies Flat (20 km).
In addition, one leg of the Great Dividing Trail, the Lerderderg Track, passes through the park, entering from Blackwood in the park's northwest, and exiting south towards Bacchus Marsh. Bicycles are prohibited from one section of this track, due to a conservation area.
This is an off trail hike so navigation skills are required. Be sure to take a map and compass as the dense bush makes it difficult to see and obvious trail. Walking along Goodmans Creek is quite easy even though multiple crossings are required. It is a rocky creek with plenty of foot pads.
Max elevation: 309 m
Min elevation: 199 m
Total climbing: 253 m
Total descent: -254 m