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Lerderderg State Park...
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The Scenic Rim and River via Link 2 hike is a difficult 16km circuit . The trail includes water crossings (possibility of your feet getting wet unless river is dry), one steep and steady climb our of the river from Grahams Dam and a significant river section back to Grahams Dam on loose and possibly wet terrain.
Follow the river upstream from Mackenzies Flat Picnic Area to Grahams Dam, which is an attractive pool ideal for swimming. Cross the river at this point and continue along the eastern river bank upstream for approximately 600m (trail marker LER503). Continue past this point along the eastern banks of the river to trail marker LER504. It is worth noting that any mapping system I have used actually shows the Link No. 2 track as starting further around this spur They are all incorrect and the trail actually commences at the marker. Ascent the broad spur via Link 2 Track to the top of the range. Turn right when you reach the Blackwood Ranges Track and continue along this track to the junction of Long Point Track. The Blackwood Ranges track is a well made vehicle track which follows relatively level ground.
Long Point Track descends a steep and rocky ridge into the gorge below. Follow this trail along its length until you emerge onto the Lerderderg River and Weir.
From the weir head south along the Lerderderg river. The level of the water and surrounding area will dictate the path you take as you pick your way along the river and its banks. There are no trail markers in this section so take time to look ahead and plan which side to take. There are a few places where there is a cliff on either side that would need to be avoided so use your best judgement Once you arrive back at Graham's Dam simply follow the river track back to Mackenzies Flat.
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. This is a fantastic but very strenuous walk. The circuit provides access to some more remote sections of the gorge and also bypasses Lerderderg Weir.
Follow the Western Freeway and turn left off at C704 the Bacchus Marsh -Gisborne exit (this is a clearly sign posted Freeway exit). Drive 1.8kms towards Gisborne then turn left along Lerderderg Gorge Road and follow it 5.4kms to Mackenzies Flat picnic area.
- Trail can be taken in any direction.
- The river is prone to flooding so avoid after heavy rains.
- Walking poles will be beneficial.
- This is a challenging walk in the Lerderderg Gorge and is for experienced hikers only. It is best to do the hike when the river is fairly low, as many crossings are necessary and at times the riverbed itself is the track. Here you can experience remote, unspoiled bush land.
- Map used: Lerderderg and Werribee Gorges by Meridian.
Max elevation: 532 m
Min elevation: 144 m
Total climbing: 789 m
Total descent: -787 m