Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

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Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Mon 03 Apr, 2017 10:47 am

I don't see much discussion of Long Forest, even though it's only 30 mins from the West Gate Bridge. Went
there for the first time yesterday, parked at the car park on Long Forest Rd and tried to follow the Happy
Valley Track up north to where I see there's a bunch of other tracks - Coimadai etc. Since there's no signs
on any of the trails I saw (even the main noticeboard at the car park has been removed by somebody) I
ended up going in the wrong direction at least twice, and what I now believe to be the correct trail (keep
to the right) seemed to end in a dead end at a creek. However it seems that I need to cross the creek and
the trail will pick up again to the north - can anyone confirm this? Will probably go back within a week
and try again to find the trail.

Here's a good blog report on Long Forest:
https://www.bushwalkingblog.com.au/coimadai-creek-hike-long-forest-nature-conservation-reserve-bacchus-marsh-victoria-2/
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby GregR » Mon 03 Apr, 2017 1:43 pm

Hi Blisters,

Seems you found the right track. It goes down hill to the creek and then you cross the creek and follow along the rudimentary track along the creek for a bit before it wanders off over a small hill and rejoins the creek. When you get to the fence line of the private property you hoof it along the creek again and you should see a very very basic man made (hillbilly made) crossing. Cross to other side and the track is quite obvious from there.

PM me if you want proper maps and notes.

Cheers

Greg
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby Out_Walking » Mon 03 Apr, 2017 7:30 pm

This is one of my favourite short walks. I've yet to see anyone there and it has a wonderful 'where the hell am I?' feel to it. Sure, a lot of this is due to the rudimentary signage, but still, it's a nice little wander. Greg's right though (good name that). Just follow what he said and after some pottering around, hopefully it makes sense. No idea if this link will work, but here's my Strava readout. If things go to plan, you should end up with something that looks like this.

https://www.strava.com/activities/368635980

or a post I did.

http://hikingfiasco.com/2015/11/05/coimadai-creek-long-forest-nature-conservation-reserve/
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Mon 03 Apr, 2017 9:36 pm

Thanks Greg and Greg - good article and pics btw! I've found with flies that if I spray my
hat/backpack/trousers/hiking poles that I rarely get bothered much, though I carry a
head net just in case. Sounds like I'll need to get my gaiters out of the boot as well :)
Strange that this hike should be so poorly marked considering how close it is to Melbourne;
even just a dab of paint on trees occasionally would have been very helpful.
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Tue 04 Apr, 2017 10:23 am

Btw Greg in your blog post you mentioned 'dodgy sinuses' causing you to have to breathe through your mouth - I used to have
the same problem until I discovered that squirting warm salt water up my nose with a syringe once a day easily cleared the
mucous out of my sinuses. Been doing that for ten years now and works like a charm! :)
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Thu 06 Apr, 2017 1:28 pm

Actually looking at the track on Google, after you initially cross the creek the path mostly veers
away from the creek, and re-crosses where it first bends to the west (rather than going all the
way west towards Camp Sunnystones as mentioned in the blog article and 'Day Walks Melbourne.'
Could that possibly be the best path to take?
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby GregR » Thu 06 Apr, 2017 4:22 pm

blisters wrote:Actually looking at the track on Google, after you initially cross the creek the path mostly veers
away from the creek, and re-crosses where it first bends to the west (rather than going all the
way west towards Camp Sunnystones as mentioned in the blog article and 'Day Walks Melbourne.'
Could that possibly be the best path to take?

NO

The track on Google Earth satellite view is all over the place like a mad dogs spit.

Repeat no.
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Fri 07 Apr, 2017 4:07 pm

Of course if there IS a track there you could make more of a circuit of it - any
idea where Google gets it's info for tracks like that? Just going by the satellite
view too the outer burbs of Melbourne seem to be creeping into Long Forest which
is a bit of a concern.
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Mon 17 Apr, 2017 11:17 pm

Had another go the other day - I got to the area near the canoes and wasn't sure where to go from there (I'd carefully
left my printed notes behind.) Reading them again now I see I should have crossed near the tires where there were a couple of
boards and other junk, though it looked rather treacherous probably due to the recent storms. I was thinking maybe I
should tie some yellow ribbons around trees or even spray paint arrows on them, or would that be considered environmental
damage? Certainly if hikers aren't encouraged to go there it'll probably end up as somebody's private property...
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby GregR » Wed 19 Apr, 2017 9:00 am

Yes you should have crossed at the tyres planks and other junk! That's what I was referring to as a hillbilly made crossing.
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Wed 19 Apr, 2017 10:33 am

Yes I thought about it but I would have first had to force my way through a bunch of very tall reeds and then done some
wading through two feet of water - didn't fancy squelching about with sodden boots so I gave up there. No doubt you
don't see many hikers in the area since the trails aren't marked and seem to lead to dead ends (and someone's removed
the info board at the car park.) Maybe locals are trying to discourage hikers so they don't have strangers wandering about
near their properties?
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Sat 22 Apr, 2017 8:47 pm

A mob of roos at Long Forest obeying the unwritten rule that all wildlife must flee the shot if I aim a camera at them:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qz_KvjqWXjw
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby GregR » Mon 24 Apr, 2017 7:18 pm

Blisters,

How deep was the water at the bottom of the hill when you crossed the first time??

Greg
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Mon 24 Apr, 2017 10:30 pm

It was almost dry before Greg but now about a foot or so of water. The crossing at Sunnystones can be crossed by using
a log now mostly hidden in the reeds - might take my Bowie ("now that's a knife!") knife next time to clear a bit of a path.
Also after the second crossing I saw a well marked path heading off to the right - presumably coming from the area where
tape on trees was pointing down to the creek in the central area.
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby GregR » Tue 25 Apr, 2017 10:00 am

Looks like I need to do a quick "recce" in the very near future, especially with al the rain this week!!
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Mon 01 May, 2017 12:57 pm

The boys from Parks Vic have been leaping around in the bush with chainsaws and
armfuls of yellow and black streamers, blazing a trail along the right side of the creek so
as to join up with the trail up north. No need to get our dainty feet wet crossing
the creek any more :) Lots of freshly sawn limbs (of trees mostly) lying about in little
piles of sawdust. Maybe they've been reading this thread? If so, a few handfuls of gravel in
those big ruts at the car park entrance and the place will be ready for prime time :) (Actually
a sign near the entrance to indicate that there actually IS an entrance would be kinda useful too -
currently you can't see it until the last moment, which can be tricky in an 80k zone with a tailgater.)
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Mon 01 May, 2017 7:25 pm

Here's some video, with lots of new trail ribbons visible:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSNQylD01fk
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby GregR » Tue 02 May, 2017 2:57 pm

I'll be up there in 2 weeks, I'll have to check out the new track(s) Must say I was looking forward to getting wet feet though :?
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Wed 03 May, 2017 7:58 pm

Well you can still take the western track across the creek - they've only created a
new track, not erased the old one :) I used the old track on the way back so as to make
a circuit of the southern area.
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby GregR » Fri 05 May, 2017 9:50 am

Thanks for the updated intell.

I'll check it out next weekend. I do like the idea of an extra loop too.
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Mon 08 May, 2017 6:52 pm

Watch out for the crossing near Sunnystones btw - stand on one of those planks and
you'll be picking splinters out of your nose =:O Also I saw three goats near there - no
I've no idea either :)
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby GregR » Sat 13 May, 2017 5:25 pm

Walked the circuit today- The Eastern side track is a fantastic little wander. Lovely views from the tops of the cliff tops and interesting terrain. Thanks for pointing that out, I would have just retraced my steps from force of habit. Makes a nice little walk into a great one.

Cheers

Greg
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Mon 15 May, 2017 11:18 am

GregR wrote:Walked the circuit today- The Eastern side track is a fantastic little wander. Lovely views from the tops of the cliff tops and interesting terrain. Thanks for pointing that out, I would have just retraced my steps from force of habit. Makes a nice little walk into a great one.

Cheers

Greg


You're welcome! Also nice is that it's ten minutes closer to Melbourne than Werribee Gorge. :) Do the whole thing including
walking up the NW track and the Gravelly circuit down South and you can easily get six hours of hiking in. Interesting that
the gate is locked at the northern carpark (where the large noticeboard is) and the only way in for walkers is climbing over a
stile - presumably to keep dogs out?
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Re: Long Forest Reserve (nr Melbourne)

Postby blisters » Sun 09 Jul, 2017 10:55 pm

I notice every time I go to Long Forest that there are people walking with off-leash dogs,
usually of the large and fierce looking variety (ignoring the 'No Dogs' sign at the entrance,
which of course has been defaced by some dog owner.) Since wallabies and 'roos are often
near the track, it would probably be a good idea to add a stile to the entrance, as has been
done on the Canopus Circuit entrance. Any thoughts?
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