Guildford-Strangways Walk Notes

Barry Golding

b.golding@federation.edu.au

These notes have been prepared by Barry Golding for the 9 km public walk on 22 May 2022 along part of the disused Castlemaine to Maryborough railway line. The walk, organised by Great Dividing Trail Association (see https://www.gdt.org.au/) in collaboration with Castlemaine Maryborough Rail Trail Inc. (see https://cmrailtrail.org.au/) starts at Guildford and includes a 6 km section of the railway easement to Strangways. Thanks to all who contributed content to these notes, particularly to Clive Willman and Stephen Carey, who also generously contribute their expertise on the day.

One aim of this walk is to provide locals and visitors with a unique opportunity (with one-off VicTrack permission) to sample and celebrate the potential of this small section of the former broad-gauge (1,600 mm) railway track (with rail and ballast still in place) as part of a longer planned public walking and bike riding track. The other is to provide opportunities to interpret and understand the many layers and dimensions of heritage and communities which the rail easement provides access to. Given approximately 100 people are participating, not everyone will have access to what we sees along the way. Thus these extra notes.

START: Guildford Railway Station Site

Acknowledgements

  • Acknowledgement we are walking on Dja Dja Wurrung Country.
  • Thanks to everyone for coming. Today’s walk was a celebration of intended new beginnings as well as a glimpse into evidence and stories about the past.
  • Thanks in terms of the organisation behind the scenes by the GDTA and CM Rail Trail Committees, with particular thanks to Mick Evans, Steve Foskey, Bob Forde, Ken Dowling & Gib Wettenhall. Bob negotiated hard and long with VicTrack for GDTA to conclude our one-off contract, providing access today on several conditions, including not walking over the delightful high level Loddon River rail bridge at Guildford.
  • With the Loddon now flowing, our route back to the rail easement via Franzi St is thus a compromise. It is a big group, but our intent is to keep most of the group together until after we again hit the rail easement. We anticipate having a little ceremony at 1 in Strangways pm to unveil an appropriate plaque just near the end of the walk just a few hundred metres from the nearby lunch site on the Loddon.
  • Non-GDTA members should already have paid $5 in cash as ‘visitors’ to cover the walker insurance insisted on by VicTrack. If you’ve not done so, see myself or Mick. We encourage visitors to consider joining GDTA if they want to walk with us again and to support CM Rail Trail Association. See information below about GDTA membership options and about the rest of GDTA’s monthly walks in 2022.
  • Masks are not necessary but a reminder that COVID is still very active: if you have active COVID or any cold or flu symptoms you should not be walking with others today.
  • We are joined today by Ray Pattle, a Guildford local historian. If you want to dig more into Guildford history which we can only briefly touch on today, chat to Ray, co-author with Ken James & Max Kay of ‘A History of Guildford’. Their 492 page book won the ‘best self-published book’ at the 2016 Victorian Community History Awards.
  • We’ll have four main interpretive stops in the vicinity of Guildford, with some others on the rail easement and one at the end.
  • A few reminders: a community bus and 10 cars are at the end of the walk to get people back to the start with a first priority to DRIVERS. We encourage you to join the BYO picnic lunch at the end accompanied by an unveiling of a plaque commemorating today’s walk and a shared commitment to make this rail easement a new highway for walkers and bike riders. This is planned for 1pm.

Interpretation at the Guildford Station site

  • The Loddon River and Campbells Creek which meet in Guildford and the surrounding volcanic grasslands were of strategic importance to Dja Dja Wurrung people for millennia, providing similarly easy access from 1837 to invading explorers including Aitken & Learmonth, and overlanding squatters from 1838 including John Hepburn. From the 1850s the gold in the rivers & creeks was mined, then the gold-bearing river gravels under the basalt. In some places the Loddon Valley below where we walk today was extensively dredged as recently as the 1950s. The same river valley has since become an easy route for today’s highways & railways and now for the planned Castlemaine-Maryborough Rail Trail.
  • This area reeks of a perplexing and rarely discussed history. These large, rounded quartz pebbles from the nearby railway cutting last rolled around in ancient streams several million years ago. Barry found this Chinese pottery shard amongst the former station debris just this week: unsurprisingly, as around 6,000 Chinese miners were once camped in the valley below us. Only one train ever passed over the new railway bridge spanning the main road.
  • Where we are standing next to the former Guildford Railway Station Platform, we can see two horizontal tunnels, called ‘adits’ driven into the ancient bedrock beneath the basalt. These tunnels provided convenient access to solid ground (and often incredibly rich gold) directly beneath the relatively unstable river gravels. These gravels up to 50m thick were sealed off by subsequent basalt flows which today form the top of the Guilford Plateau. Our first stop after this is at the Guildford Lookout on the top of a remnant part of the original plateau. It’s a reasonably steep climb up and down the gravel road to the lookout. Anyone who decides not to walk it might drive up before we get there, wait at the bottom or even have a cuppa at the Guildford General Store.
  • The Castlemaine-Maryborough Railway Line, formerly known as the Moolort Railway Line is a cross-country line connecting Maryborough and Castlemaine across the Moolort Plains west of Newstead. The last passenger rail service operated between Castlemaine and Maryborough on 31 July 1977. Ballast trains used to run from Moolort to Maryborough but on 17 Dec 2004, the line from Moolort to Maldon Junction at Winters Flat was closed. Some level crossings have been asphalted over, however the rails are in effect still beneath. The line passes south from Castlemaine through Campbells Creek, Yapeen, and Guildford before trending west through Newstead, Moolort, and Carisbrook before joining the Mildura line at Maryborough.
  • Castlemaine Maryborough Rail Trail Association (CMRT) was founded in 2021 to transform the disused 55 km Castlemaine to Maryborough rail corridor into a world-class recreational trail, that can be used by cyclists, walkers and horse riders of all ages and abilities. CMRT want to connect communities, defend safe travel, encourage prosperity, look after the bush and tell amazing stories of places and people. CMRT uses grassroots action to inspire communities and spur governments to lead the charge to establish a new trail in Central Victoria. Its community outreach aims to rally people of all ages and backgrounds behind the idea of a trail. To build a trail, they need to build a movement. Mount Alexander Shire Council and Central Goldfields Shire Council are supporting CMRT in their application for a Grant from Regional Development Victoria to finance a comprehensive Feasibility Study to investigate the opportunities that a Community Recreation Trail between Maryborough and Castlemaine would provide. Please help them in whatever way you can ‘down the track’.

STOP 1: The Guildford Plateau from the Lookout

  • The stone platform provides excellent vistas of the area, with a fingerboard identifying the main towns and visible peaks. The monument was erected in 1988 as Bicentennial Project via the then Shire of Newstead. It is also a memorial to respected local Guildford resident Alfred Passalaqua, who died in 1964 and whose forebears came to Newstead from Italy in 1851.
  • The brass fingerboard was added in 2005, with distances to four of the 22 (theoretically) visible peaks: 21 km NW to Tarrengower & 25 km NE to Mount Alexander (Leanganoook), 11 km south to Mount Franklin (Larni Barramul) and 20 km SW to Kooroocheang. The PeakFinder app (highly recommended for $8) suggests on an ideal day with no trees, Mount Buangor (987 m) would be visible to the west. Directions to the main towns and cities are also indicated. At this point we are just 10 km from Castlemaine, 50 km from Bendigo, 65 km from Ballarat and 105 km to Melbourne.

Guildford Plateau: An ‘upside-down’ Landscape (credit, Clive Willman)

  • We don’t often see mesa-like hills in Victoria but the Guildford Plateau is a wonderful example. The story starts around 40 million years ago when the ancient Loddon River carved its way from the Glenlyon headwaters. This was a vigorous stream formed in a high-rainfall period. We know from pollen and spores in lignite found beneath the basalt cap that the deep valley was full of rainforest species such as Southern beech (Nothofagus genus), ferns and maybe the odd freshwater crocodile. Over time the Loddon Valley filled with clay, sand, gravel and gold, forming a stream bed up to 50 m thick. But in one catastrophic event, within the last 4.5 million years, the Glenlyon volcanoes sent a rush of lava northwards. Lava spread like honey seeking any valley it could find instantly burying the ancient gravels and their contained gold.
  • Since then, erosion has lowered the entire surrounding landscape, but not the hard basalt. The basalt was eroded away in some places but mostly it was left high and dry as a series of isolated mesas, like the beautiful Guildford Plateau.
  • Guildford marks the edge of the volcanic country and its lava flows. North of here, gold could be found easily, but south and west of here, the old alluvial valleys were covered by the lava flows, and mining generally had to follow ‘deep leads’ below the basalt. Valleys like this one, where rivers had already done some of the work, still promised easily won alluvial gold. In front of you at the base of the escarpment, at the junction of the Loddon River and Campbells Creek is a wide river flat which was once the site of one of the largest Chinese townships on an Australian goldfield.
  • Many plant and animal species up here on the volcanic plains were well adapted and enhanced by regular burning by Dja Dja Wurrung peoples, and very few have survived. One of the hardy exceptions, which most people don’t recognise, is the Tree Violet, Melicytus dentatus. There are quite a few ancient Tree Violets on the fence line north of the access road not far from the viewing platform. Some individual plants like this one are likely to over 150 years oldWe will see them today from a distance, surviving amongst rocky outcrops on the edge of the Guildford Plateau, hanging on along fence lines or doggedly avoiding sheep grazing in open paddocks for over a century, because its leaves grow behind very sharp thorns, giving it the perfect in-built tree guard. 

Stop 2: The Loddon River & the Guildford Township

  • The Loddon River is the second longest river in Victoria (392km) after the Goulburn (the Murray is technically in NSW). It drains 15,000 square km.
  • It rises in the high rainfall country on the Great Divide around Lyonville and enters the Murray River north of Kerang flowing eventually into the sea near Goolwa in South Australia. Townships on the Loddon upstream include Guildford, Glenluce and Vaughan Springs. Downstream townships include Strangways (where our walk ends), Newstead, Baringhup and Bridgewater before entering the Murray River north of Kerang.
  • Downstream of Newstead in deep pools, huge Murray Cod and Macquarie Perch were once abundant. Tree clearing, agriculture, mining sludge and damming by Cairn Curran and Laanecoorie reservoirs and several weirs downstream all but wiped them out, but they have been reintroduced at some sites.
  • There are very rich gold bearing river gravels under the basalt, deposited by the ancient Campbells Creek and the Loddon River. By 1860, around 6,000 Chinese diggers occupied ground on Taylor’s Paddock at the river junction. Adjacent to their mine workings, the Chinese formed ‘quite a township’ which included, among other things, two circuses. Sluicing and dredging operations during the twentieth century removed all trace of Chinese occupation. By 1861 the Mining Surveyors monthly report observed that the Chinese had ‘… regularly formed streets (although very dirty and very narrow), and excellent buildings of paling and weatherboard, consisting, in many instances, of two stories. These buildings are tastefully decorated both inside and out …. The largest erections area used as cook-shops, eating houses, gambling and opium saloons … If the amount of noise and confusion is any criterion, I should imagine the Chinese in this locality are doing remarkably well’.

Brief post-contact history of Guildford

  • By the 1840s huge pastoral runs had been established. From 1851 gold miners from all over the world, including many Chinese, flocked to the area during the rush at the Mount Alexander goldfields. Anti-Chinese hostility, combined with discriminatory taxation against Chinese miners, saw the Chinese population dwindle and eventually most had departed by the end of the gold rush.
  • The first hotel in Guildford opened in 1854 but was destroyed by fire in 1857. The current Delmenico’s Guildford Family Hotel dates back to this era. Other former hotels included the Farmers Arms and the Commercial Hotel (1865) which now serves as the general store. A school was built and a Post Office opened in 1860, followed by the Anglican Church in 1861.The Catholic Church and the Wesleyan Chapel are now both private properties. In 1919 an Avenue of Honour was planted along the main road using London Plane trees, to commemorate locals who fought in World War I.
  • The Swiss-Italian connection and the Ron Barassi memorial: Ron Barassi, well known Melbourne footballer was born in Castlemaine in 1936 and spent his formative years in Guildford. He is a descendant of the Swiss Italian settlers in the area in the 1870s. The bronze bust opposite the Guildford General Store (which began as a pub in the 1860s) was donated by the Vingt Cinq Club (a Melbourne-based sporting Club) as a tribute to one of their long standing members commemorating Ron’s 80th birthday, 27 Feb 2016.

STOP 3: The ‘Big Tree’ at Guildford

  • ‘The Big Tree’: one of the largest Red Gums (Eucalyptus camaldulensis) in Victoria (height 32 m; basal diameter 3 m, age at least 500 years). It has a large branch graft on its northern side. John Hepburn likely camped nearby on his way to ‘take up’ his run around Kooroocheang in April 1838. The brass plaque records Burke and Wills and party camping here in 1860 on their ill-fated northern expedition.
  • It is listed as a tree of State significance on the National Trust’s Register of Significant Trees of Victoria for its “outstanding size, curious fusion of branches, as an outstanding example of the species and as an important landmark“. The National Trust regards its conservation as vital to the local community and the State as a whole.
  • Due to its great age, numerous hollows have formed within the tree, providing habitat for many creatures. This tree is an ecosystem which sustains a wide range of bird and animal life including magpies, rosellas, lorikeets, parrots, kookaburras, wood ducks, boobook owls, honey eaters, numerous species of insects, native bees and possums.
  • Already an ancient giant when the first white invaders arrived in the late 1830s, the Big Tree has played an important part in the cultural and social life of the Guildford community. This tree survives as an important symbol and a link between the community and its traditional owners, the Dja Dja Wurrung Aboriginal Nation.

Stop 4: The Franzi Street Railway Cutting in the Ordovician bedrock

  • Most railways including this one necessitate a gentle gradient, ideally of less than one in 400 with relatively wide curves. In a cutting east of where Franzi Street hits the railway easement, look out for a ‘rail lubricator,’ used to reduce rail wear on curves by delivering a metered quantity of lubricant from a reservoir to a location on the gauge face of the rail head where it was picked up by wheel flanges of passing vehicles.
  • As a result of the need for gentle gradient and wide curves, cuttings are sometimes necessary which excite geologists by providing excellent samples of the rocks and geological history along the way. Much of this particular rail easement nearly east-west all the way to Strangways, cutting into and neatly across the axis of the north-south folded Ordovician (444-485 million year old) shales and sandstones which comprise the bedrock of much of the Victorian goldfields. 
  • Geologists Clive Willman and Steve Carey will stand at the cutting and explain what we are seeing. In summary, there is a series of folds including an anticline (top of a folds) and a syncline (bottom of a folds). In places we can see quartz injected into the complex network of cracks. In some places the discrete bands of siltstone and sandstone show evidence of disturbances which happened on the sea floor 460 million years ago In some places, the originally flat ‘bedding planes’ on the sea floor are obscured by almost vertical ‘cleavage planes’ created as part of the folding process. In other places the complex, random patterns are caused by the weathering of iron.
  • The reason these folds are basically north south is because these ancient sediments were squeezed at depth over millions of years by east west pressure. In the process of being folded, fracture and faults developed and became pathways for the passage of aqueous fluids. It was from these fluids that quartz and its associated gold were precipitated.
  • The gold was rich enough in places to be mined deep underground in the bedrock. In other places, millions of years of erosion of the bedrock and quartz veins resulted in gold being concentrated close to the surface in ancient and modern river gravels. If covered by basalt, these ancient gravels were effectively ‘locked away’, though in some places they were eroded out by modern rivers including along the Loddon.
  • The fine mudstone layers in the bedrock of the broader Castlemaine area contain fossils of former colonial marine organisms known as graptolites. Graptolites are very useful for determining the age of the bedrock layers. Their diverse forms, their rapid evolution over during and after the Ordovician, and their ability to float across ancient seas allows particular assemblages of graptolites to be accurately dated and compared with the same species that are found all over the world. It is thus possible to date discrete layers of rock to unravel the complex fold and fault structures in the bedrock across Victoria. Some of these layers have been named after local places: thus the Yapeenian, the Castlemainian, Bendigonian, Chewtonian and Lancefieldian graptolite assemblages. Clive Willman’s careful mapping of the geology of the Castlemaine area confirmed that despite the complexity of the folds, it is also possible to map discrete beds of silt and sandstone over many kilometres.
  • Beyond this point on Franzi Street, the railway track and our walk basically heads west, following the contours along the south side of the Loddon River and river valley. The edge of the Guildford Plateau is to our north, and at times along the way, we cut though the same tightly folded Ordovician bedrock. 
  • We welcome you to walk at your own pace beyond here. However our intention is to have the BYO lunch together on the Loddon River at the end of the walk, where we’ll also have our last interpretive chat and at approx. 1pm also unveil a plaque commemorative of today’s first of (hopefully) many walks. So there’s no rush and lots to else see and talk about with others along the way …

Stop 5 (along the way): The Deep Lead Mines tapping into the sub-basaltic gravels

  • The course of gold bearing river gravels under the basalt cap north of here were identified during the late 1800s by exploratory shafts and tunnels and later by extensive drilling. These gravels were accessed and mined in two main ways. One was by means of shafts driven down through the basalt and using extensive horizontal ‘drives’ to mine out the gravels. 
  • The other way, common here on the edges of the Guildford Plateau was by means of adits driven horizontally into the side of a valley underneath the gravels. In many cases, extensive timbering, dewatering and removal of the gold were necessary. All of this required huge amounts of timber to feed the boilers or to line the tunnels and shafts. It led by 1900 not only to the almost complete removal of local forests and woodlands, but also to enormous volumes of sludge. The sediments under the broad Loddon River valley to Newstead and beyond had accumulated enough gold allow for profitable mining using huge bucket wheel dredges which typically floated in their own pool. This mining phase involving dredging occurred mainly in the early 20th century. Dozens of dredges ‘chomped’ their way along the largest streams such as Larni barramul yaluk (formerly Jim Crow Creek), Campbells Creek and the Loddon River. 
  • The downstream mess created by all this mining led to the Victorian Sludge Abatement Board, an early predecessor of the current Environment Protection Authority. The almost total loss of local forests led by 1900 also led to the creation of Forestry Commissions and the training of foresters in Creswick. See 2019 book, Sludge: Disaster on the Victorian Goldfields by Peter Davies & Susan Lawrence.

Stop 6: (along the way) Remnant Vegetation 

Railway easements like this with remnant vegetation which have fenced out stock for over 150 years have become important linear reserves in many places, with the potential to preserve species and ecosystems otherwise lost by clearing and agriculture and provide links between other public reserves.  The railway easement generally cuts across and preserves a wide range of remnant local eucalypt, shrub, grass and wildflower species. It will be important to enhance this easement by future replanting of local species and via weed, vermin and fire management.

FINAL STOP 7: The Loddon Valley at Strangways

  • At this point we are on the fertile Loddon River flats, a former, important Aboriginal highway. We are also just south of the former Strangways railway yards. To the south up the ‘Jim Crow Creek’ is a small amount of fertile volcanic soil that later became the centre of the former Loddon Aboriginal Protectorate at Franklinford from mid-1841.  The current main road between Newstead and Franklinford south-east of here follows narrow tongues of volcanic grasslands straddled by forested sandstone country. These grassy tablelands would have been Aboriginal highways leading through the Great Divide and much of the way to Ballan. The Loddon River flats downstream at Newstead are on the main Aboriginal highway that Thomas Mitchell followed in October 1836 and which was later referred to as ‘Mitchell’s Line’. It became the Gold Escort route to Adelaide during the 1850s. 
  • During 1837 several pastoralists used this river highway along the Loddon to explore for new country to invade beyond already ‘taken up areas’. One group including Aitken (at Mount Aitken, after whom Mount Aitken was named) swung up past Mount Macedon (Terawait) and Mount Alexander (Leanganook), along the Loddon and back to Corio via Ercildoune. Another group including Thomas Learmonth explored north from Buninyong, via Dowling Forest along the Loddon and back to Melbourne via Kyneton.
  • Near where we are standing was home station of the Bough Yards pastoral run once managed by Alex Kennedy (1801-1877) which stretched south of the Loddon to the east well beyond Guildford. To the north of the Loddon was the Strathloddon pastoral run commenced in 1840 by his relation, William Campbell (1810-1896) after whom Campbells Creek is named. Campbell became one of Australia’s richest pastoralists, with interests in at least 18 pastoral runs nationally.
  • In the alluvial gold-mining era Strangways had several hotels, a school, store and Martin’s blacksmith’s forge. A large hall at the former Strangways Hotel was the venue for balls during the Newstead Show and the Oddfellows’ anniversaries. The surviving No. 1538 Strangways pink-red brick school building 1.5 km north via School Road (opened 1875) which closed in 1964 was somewhat larger than contemporaneous country schools in the area. The Strangways township and district including Guildford were administered by the Shire of Newstead from 1865 until amalgamation into the Mount Alexander Shire in 1995.
  • The huge quartz boulder on the road easement to the Loddon River near where today’s commemorative post and plaque has been erected was taken out of the gold-bearing gravels on the edge of the Guildford plateau by Don Hepburn (who still lives opposite). It is an indication of how much bigger the streams were that buried by the basalt several million years ago. Imagine what huge, ancient river eroded and moved this boulder along the stream.
  • The area near the former Strangways railway yards became important in the early 1841 as Edward Parker looked the area as a Plan B as the original site at Neereman (on the Loddon north of Baringhup, which GDTA visits on the Sunday 3 July 2022 walk) proved unsuitable. Lyon Campbell and other local squatters strongly objected. The objection was mainly because this area was already taken up by stations and was too close to what had become the main ‘overlanding’ highway on Mitchell’s Line between Sydney and Portland.
  • There was a revival of gold dredging and hydraulic sluicing along Larni barramul yaluk and the Loddon River during the 1930s into the 1950s. Mining ceased in part because the mining sludge would have impacted on the Cairn Curran reservoir, constructed above Baringhup between 1947 and 1956.

Lunch Stop

  • The recommended BYO lunch stop is down the end of the fenced off lane to the Loddon River, on a grassy rise above the gravel banks approx. 100 m to the right across a mostly dry creek bed. This is a delightful and accessible picnic spot any time, particularly in summer if the Loddon is flowing, for safe shallow water swimming and gold panning. The fenced off lane is leased by the local famers, but public access is permitted via this laneway to the river verge (but shut the gate).
  • Drivers (and those with tight deadlines) will have first priority getting a lift back to their cars at the start, either on the community bus or via cars parked at the end. Please be patient as it may take some time to ferry everyone.

About the Great Dividing Trail

Over 300 km in length, the Great Dividing Trail Network (GDTN) has from its outset been community-planned and developed from the bottom up, first by a group of bushwalkers and now mountain bike riders and trail runners. At the heart of the goldfields region, the GDTN is the longest distance inland network of tracks in Victoria. Close to Melbourne, it links cities and towns that are closely spaced and it offers what many have described as a ‘European’ experience – walkers and cyclists are always close to history, cultural heritage, forests, cities and villages, accommodation, tourism services, cultural events and good food and wine. Users can ‘step on and step off’ the track at a number of places, completing short, day or overnight trips. The GDTN offers plenty of opportunities for mixing with local people and unexpected learning experiences.

Why join the GDTA?

None of this has happened without the support of people at ground level. By joining, you become part of a member-run, non-profit incorporated association, the Great Dividing Trail Association (GDTA). Annual individual membership from June 2022 is $30: sign up at https://www.gdt.org.au/product-category/memberships

The GDTA initiated the network 30 years ago and continues to work with land managers and Goldfields Track Inc to promote and maintain both ‘legs’ of the network – the Lerderderg Track and the Goldfields Track. We are the advocates for the GDTN; the engine room that keeps the network in good shape and has produced the maps and guidebooks, which opens up its secrets and stories. By paying a small annual membership fee, you can become part of this. 

The $30 annual individual membership has added benefits. You will receive monthly alerts and updates to our guided Walks & Rides Program, where you can meet people who share a love of nature and heritage in all its forms and want to get off the beaten track. Our news and event bulletin, GDTA POST will let you know what we’re doing and tell you about member-only events like our annual spring lunch after a Walk & Ride. You will receive advance notice about any new publications, such as our new Lerderderg Track map and the Central Victorian Highlands Walk and Ride Circuits guide. 

You could join the GDTA Facebook page that reports on what’s happening around the network and what members are up to. Members can become ‘track warriors,’ joining work crews that aid in the network’s never-ending maintenance needs. We conduct regular patrols, reporting back on issues such as fallen trees; as well as carrying out supervised track maintenance, such as replacing damaged posts.

Forthcoming GDTA Guided Walks & Rides, 2022

DatesWalk/Ride (area)LeadersDifficulty
Sun May 22Walk: Castlemaine-Maryborough Rail Trail with CM Rail Trail Inc. (Guildford)Barry Golding & Mick EvansEasy
Sun Jun 19Walk: Union Jack Reserve & Woowookarung Regional Park (Ballarat-Buninyong)Mike Gustus & Bill CaseyMedium
Sun July 3Walk: Neereman Aboriginal Protectorate (Baringhup, NAIDOC week) gdt.org.au/jul-walk-regoBarry GoldingEasy
Sun Jul 17Walk: Sebastopol Gully (Dry Diggings Track)Ed ButlerMed-Hard
Sun Aug 21Walk: Garfield Wheel and Welsh Village (Chewton)Mick EvansMedium
Sun Sep 18Walk: Loddon Water Race (Glenlyon)Tim Bach & Ed ButlerHard
Sun Oct 9Ride:  Chocolate Mill (Hepburn Springs)Ben LohseMedium
Sun Oct 23Walk: Cuttings and Culverts (Wombat Forest, Mollongghip) GDTA Members’ Lunch Gib WettenhallEasy
Sun Nov 6Ride: TBABen Lohse 
Sun Nov 20Walk: Franklinford Aboriginal ProtectorateBarry GoldingEasy
Sun  Dec 4Walk: Eureka Stockade (Ballarat: Walk, Picnic and Swim)Gib WettenhallEasy

Author: barrygoanna

Honorary Professor, Federation University Australia: researcher in men's learning through community contexts, author of 'Men learning through life' 2014) book (NIACE, UK), 'The Men's Shed Movement: The Company of Men' (2015) & 'Shoulder to Shoulder: Broadening the Men's Shed Movement' (2021) books, both published Common Ground Publishing, US.

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