So we love taking our dogs bushwalking all around Victoria, but I always find it challenging to find places to take them! So I’ll document our walks here and then if people are searching for places to go, hopefully this will help.
Where: RJ Hamer Forest Arboretum, Olinda
Difficulty/fitness required: Umm… Depends… if you just go along the Mathias Rd track, you’d need maybe 2/10… If you go off to either side, I’d say 8/10
Hilliness: Quite hilly
Leech-factor: Not that we encountered, however I wouldn’t put it past some of the muddier areas.
Animal/Wildlife factor: Low-Medium – I suspect there are rabbits around, and there are certainly signs of wombats, and there’s probably roos, too, but we only saw birds.
Interesting bits? Well, it’s quite interesting because it’s an arboretum, so there’s clumps of different kinds of trees that you go through/past, and so you get sort of different ‘atmospheres’ as you’re walking. Oh, and if you park at the main carpark off Chalet Rd, there’s a beautiful view across the arboretum and the hills.
Map: Oh, probably, I didn’t bother.
On/off lead? On, sadly.
I really wanted to go somewhere close to home this afternoon so I sucked up the onleashedness of this forest, clipped on my Urban Walkjoring belt (it’s just a regular belt), harnessed up the Lumen (must get a harness for Loki) and off we went. We parked off Silvan Rd because I wanted to avoid doing anything too hilly, and knew that if we parked on Chalet Rd, we’d be hit with a downhill (and therefore, eventual uphill) straight away. But in doing so, we found a cute little track off into some trees that went straight downhill, so we took it. We found ourselves wandering through different groves of trees, like the oak grove pictured above. There were cute little single-tracks through here that went down down down. I suspect eventually it looped along at the bottom of the hill and eventually worked its way back up but I chickened out before then because of my calf injury and the fact that I’m not supposed to walk up hill. Whoops.
So we worked out way back up and followed Mathias Rd along for a while, considered taking another side road but it, too, went downhill – that’ll have to be for another time. There’s plenty more exploring to be done in here before we move, I think, and will be good for our fitness to do that hill walking (once it doesn’t hurt to do so!).
This place would be really gorgeous in autumn when the leaves are changing.