Our Riparian Walks have been busy exploring some of the Strathbogie Shire’s best known, larger waterways (Seven Creeks, Hughes Creek, County Creek). For this walk, we wanted to go completely off the beaten path.
Bald Hill Creek is a small tributary of the Seven Creeks, and lies entirely within private property. What’s more, the creek from start to finish is less than 7km long. Rarely do we get see an entire creek in a single day, let alone a few hours (with a detour!). But that’s what make this day special.
Bald Hill Creek slowly erupts from the earth just north of Tames Rd, being fed along by several smaller springs and creeks before reaching the Seven Creeks. Local Geologist Neil Phillips explained that a dividing water table lies underneath Tames Rd. Creeks to the south feed an entirely different catchment (mainly Eildon) to those a few hundred meters away.
High winds the night before created havock on the local roads. While driving to the starting point, some attendees were met with several fallen trees blocking the roads. Some had to make multiple attempts to find a clear path, delaying the walk start slightly. Challenging weather conditions couldn’t dampen people’s spirits however, with a healthy turnout of over 25 enthusiasts. The regular mix of familiar faces, as well as some newcomers was great to see, with several people travelling from outside the shire to join.
After some trepidation surrounding falling branches, the decision was made to walk through the small amount of bushland up to the “Kelly Caves”. The ascent up the side of the Bald Hill Bushland Reserve was short, but particularly steep. Said to have been used as a lookout by the Kelly Gang during their reign, the caves are actually a small overhang that could potentially provide shelter from the elements. An added benefit are the beautiful clear views over the Strathbogie Tableland, good for keeping an eye on local law enforcement.
Wildlife was sparse, with howling winds keeping most critters (expect the usual wallabies) hidden from view. However, some local knowledge uncovered a family of lizards that call a collection of granite boulders their homes. The winds meant that the lizards were nestled deep in their rocks for this walk. Fortunately they could be partially seen if you knew where to look.
With a total walk distance of around 6km, this was a fairly easy walk, with the exception of the scramble up the side of Bald Hill. This meant that we were able to maintain a leisurely pace, with a few breaks to stop and appreciate the beautiful surrounds. The usual blackberry bushes were scattered throughout, but the creek compared well to others we’ve seen.
Thanks to all of the walkers who came, and again to the generous landholders for allowing us access to the creek through their properties.