COME Christmas, weather providing, popular Mt Oberon in Wilsons Promontory National Park should once again be accessible to the public.
Torrential rains in March last year caused untold damage to the Prom. Many wet months since have hampered recovery efforts, but gradually repairs have been made and tracks have reopened.
Parks Victoria’s Chief Ranger at Wilsons Promontory, Helen Dixon, said the extensive works to rebuild both the road and walking tracks on Mt Oberon are intended to be completed in time for the Christmas holiday period.
“The Mt Oberon reconstruction project has been incredibly complex, involving Parks Victoria staff, engineers and contractors working to reinstate these very popular areas. The works are well underway, ready to reopen Mt Oberon and the Summit Walk in time for the busy summer season,” said Ms Dixon.
Additionally, crews have been working solidly to reconstruct the few remaining track closures that still remain in place at the Prom, with more to be reopened in time for the summer holidays.
“Our teams have, as a priority, also reopened the most popular tracks over the past 18 months. We have reinstated the tracks most severely damaged by the March 2011 flood in consultation with engineering assessments to try and future proof them from severe weather events,” added Ms Dixon.
This has ensured access to popular sites such as Darby Beach, Lilly Pilly Gully, Tongue Point and the Mt Bishop track were reinstated sooner, while separate recovery works were underway to rebuild Telegraph and Mt Oberon tracks.
Works will continue on rebuilding the Sealers Cove track, and for visitor safety this track will remain closed. Parks Victoria envisages reopening this iconic Prom walk by Easter 2013.
The major boardwalk reconstruction works on the Waterloo Bay track will continue over the summer period – the track is still accessible and visitors are advised to take care.
Subject to weather, Parks Victoria anticipates that the following walks and roads will reopen by the commencement of the Christmas Ballot period on December 21:
- Loo Errn boardwalk;
- Whisky Bay beach access track and car park;
- Cotters Lake walking track and car park;
- Mt Oberon Road;
- Mt Oberon summit walk;
- Telegraph Track.
In the meantime, there are plenty of beautiful walks to enjoy. Particularly worthy of mention at this time of year, when the wildflowers are starting to bloom, are the following short walks:
- Millers Landing (2km one way. 40 minutes. Easy)
- Vereker Outlook (3km one way. 1 hour. Moderate)
- Lilly Pilly link track (1km one way. 20 minutes. Easy)
- Picnic Bay beach access track (400 metres, Moderate).