It’s been quite some time since I have tackled this walk, its tough and steep (both down and up) but the relatively secluded beach and views when you get down the hill are definitely worth the effort. It was one of the first walks I was introduced to and it’s been quite a while since me and this knee have tackled it!
I clearly remember the first off road walk with this new knee, it started at the Mores Reserve car park and went 10 mins along the relatively flat bush to a lookout over Colac Bay. I found it impossibly hard even with poles. So this walk is quite a milestone.
Today is the eve of 6 months since the new knee and the first time in a very long time since I tried to complete this loop.
The walk starts at the top of the hill (car park) and winds down through the bush to the end of the tree line. From there it takes a left turn along the fence line before descending once more till the end of the fence, then through paddocks to the beach. The descent is steep and particularly tricky once you get out of the bush where there is a well maintained cinder path that is easy to get traction on.
From there it winds down the last of the steep hill emerging out onto paddocks that rolls straight onto the beach. The uphill return heads up through the other side of the paddocks, over a stile and ascends till it adjoins the bush again and the cinder path, which emerges out onto the car park at the same point.
The sign at the top of the hill says 1 hour return. The DOC website says 2 hours return. So we timed it.
As expected, the descent was particularly hard work, specially when I had to walk down wet muddy slopes. But, the start of the descent went well and I found that at first, I could walk down hill like a normal person, able to trust the legs without 100% relying on the poles. But, because the knee is not yet back to full power, I found that it wasn’t long before it started hurting because the muscles just don’t have sufficient power yet to constantly walk down steep demanding slopes for as long as that. So, I needed to slow right down, do some sideways shimmys and rely on the poles a little more. Still, I made it to the bottom! The uphill was way easier, it was my lungs that gave out long before the knee!
All in all, it took us 40 mins to get down to the bottom, and 23 to get back up again. The signs don’t necessarily agree with each other because the one at the top said 1 hour return. The one on the beach said 45 mins to get back up to the car park and the DOC website says 2 hours in total.
So, in summary, we did it all in 63 mins, which beats the sign on the beach, the DOC website and is only 3 mins slower than that sign at the top.
Not too shabby for me and this new knee!