It's been a little while since I did a walk up in the Grampians National Park so with a Friday Night/Saturday free I figured that I'd head up and revisit the park. My mate James was keen to get away for a bit of a break as well so after packing enough of James' gear into my ute to house a small army, we headed off into the night. Now the forecast for this weekend wasn't looking real flash so it wasn't no real surprise that we spent a large part of our journey up there driving through the rain. Thankfully when we arrived at the Plantation Camp Ground the rain held off while we erected our tents. Plantation Camp was surprisingly crowded, in fact it was the most crowded national park camp ground that I'd been in for awhile which was a bit weird to me as Plantation Camp isn't normally one of the most popular spots in the Grampians. Maybe the crowds were due to Stapylton Camp still being closed so all the rock climbers were down here, I dunno.....
|The Plantation Camping Ground was fairly busy on this damp day.|
After a night of wind and rain we packed up our damp tents and headed off....for breakfast in Halls Gap, yep hard core walking indeed. After a couple of cups of coffee and some healthy bacon and eggs we finally decided that we'd better head off on a walk before the whole day disappeared entirely into a haze of newspapers and caffeine. Pulling on the walking gear we jumped in the ute and headed back up the Mount Zero Road to Roses Gap, arriving at the car park to be greeted by continuing light rain. This area of the Grampians was severely burn't a few years ago and is slowly being re opened to the punters, you didn't have to look far to see evidence left over from the fires though.
|This end of the park is slowly being re opened after the bush fires of a couple of years ago, there is still a lot of evidence from the fires around though. |
We were heading to Beehive Falls to check them out, these small falls flow from the Mount Difficult Range and are best seen after rain so we figured that with all the recent rain that we'd been having then the falls should be looking ok today. Pulling on the rain jacket we meandered our way along the wide track, James was like an impatient puppy anxious to get to the falls, I was more circumspect and taking it a bit slower, this was the first walk that I'd done without my leg being bandaged up since my operation so I wasn't sure how it would go. This walk slowly climbs up to a small amphitheatre in the range where the falls tumble down, and while it does climb it's a very gentle ascent really.
|Low cloud draped the Mount Difficult Range this morning.|
After crossing over Mud Hut Creek on the substantial bridge we climbed up the now rocky track to the base of the falls. We were right about the rain too, the falls were flowing as good as on any visit that I'd seen them. Beehive Falls are quite a pretty waterfall, the surrounding sandstone cliffs are a mixture of browns and oranges that would look quite impressive in the late afternoon light I would think, even in the damp and overcast conditions today they looked pretty good. The tannin stained water itself has the colour of iced tea and with the numerous swirl pools as it cascaded down there are plenty of opportunities for arty wanker shots, and while I may be a wanker, unfortunately I'm not very arty...so these shots are the best I could do.
|The Briggs Bluff track was closed just above Beehive Falls.|
We mucked around near the falls for at least 30 minutes which turned out to be a good thing, as when we turned and started to head down to the ute the grey cloud started to break and we got some glimpses of blue sky. The surrounding sandstone cliffs and turrets, more prominent than normal due the vegetation having been knocked back a fair bit in the bush fires, definitely looked a little better under blue skies. After spending some time watching a couple of wedge tail eagles soaring on the thermals we arrived back at the ute, the good news was that my leg appeared to be holding up ok so it was with a little more confidence that I set off up the road for our next adventure.
Are you sitting down?.... Wait for it....we walked a grand total of 4.1 kilometres on this walk, and I reckon 2 kilometres were racked up rock hoping around taking photos. The metres climbed was hardly gob smacking either, 131 metres isn't really going to send your lungs into melt down. While Beehive Falls probably aren't worth a visit to the Grampians in their own right they are definitely worth checking out if you find yourself in the area, especially if it's been raining recently. The easy track up to the falls is very well constructed until you pass over Mud Hut Creek around 50 metre from the base of the falls, from here on it's a little rocky under foot but its a walk that would still be suitable for young kids. I had some old notes and a mud map out of Tyrone Thomas' book 80 Walks In The Grampians but really you only need the free stuff Parks Vic have online, the best map for the area is probably Spatial Vision's Northern Grampians 1:50,000 sheet.
|The bush is recovering well from the fires.|