Against the wind

Fifteen brave takers drove out of Castlemaine through a driving storm on Sunday the 18th for the first FOBIF walk of the year in the Fryers Forest. The storm lasted ten minutes, but the wind came and went all day, making for a blustery experience: and the Coliban channel is bordered with many wrecked trees, reminders of the epic winds which rampaged through this area earlier in the year.

Candlebarks on the Coliban channel: the channel hosts many exceptionally large eucalypts, especially Candlebark, Long-leaved Box, Stringybark and Manna Gums

The channel is a curiously contradictory experience. Picturesque and easy walking, the reserve lined with fine old eucalypts, Candlebarks and Manna gums being the standouts: but rampant blackberry and gorse infestations suggest that weed control is not a high priority for the water authority.

Next month’s walk takes in Brown’s Gully, one of the jewels of the Diggings Park. Check the program for details.

Part of the group takes a break at the channel crossing. Photo: David Elliott

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