Today's Sherbrooke Forest walk
Thanks to La Niña, this has been a cooler than average summer for Melbourne. (At least, than the average in my lifetime – probably before climate change the summers would've felt more like this one.) The great thing about having a cooler summer is having weather you can go out and do some serious walking in, even after the early morning. Today we had a forecast maximum of 27°C, which is already warmer than most of this summer has been, but we deemed it cool enough to go on a bushwalk.
In June – during the interregnum between the two lockdowns – Viv and I did the Eastern Sherbrooke Forest Walk, in the Dandenong Ranges, for the first time. The walk goes for a bit over 7km through lush temperate rainforest, and is a little hilly, with a couple of steep uphill sections. It took us about two hours to complete then (with a couple of stops to rest mid-route).
Today, we went back for the first time since. We took a bit of a "wrong turn" that made the walk about 10km instead, but we *did* get to skip the first of the steep uphill sections so overall I think that was the better move. The weather was obviously warmer than when we went in winter, but it didn't feel like 27° – maybe the elevation and the microclimate generated by the rainforest itself helped keep it down. Anyway, the temperature was totally fine for walking in. With fewer, shorter stops, the walk took us 2 hours, 20 minutes despite the three extra kilometres we tacked on.
What I really like about this specific walk is that the scenery is absolutely beautiful, and the songs of the birds and chirping of the insects are so utterly peaceful. This time around, we saw some native species we don't often see in the city, too – a wallaby, which eyed us off from a distance (I think hoping we might leave some food for it, which we didn't…), a couple of kookaburras, and some crimson rosellas (here in my suburb, we have rosellas but they're the Eastern variety).
Anyway, while the walk was scenic and rewarding it was also completely exhausting, haha. Still, I think bushwalks are something Viv and I should slot into our routine a bit more often. They're great exercise, on top of everything else.
I put a small subset of my photos on my blog, if you'd like to see.