The weather is looking patchy as we drive through the entrance to Wilsons Promontory National Park. We are planning on walking to the top of Mount Oberon and knowing Victoria’s weather as I do, the weather can change rapidly so if I put the walk off until tomorrow the weather may be worse. We take the turn off to the Telegraph saddle car park but it is closed. It is a weekend and so we are going to have to take a shuttle bus from Tidal River up to the saddle where a number of walks in the southern section of the park begin.
We make the most of our time waiting for the shuttle by taking Harry into the information centre where he proceeds to tell us that he is going to need to buy a hat and a shirt here. We buy a Tidal River shirt and wombat Wilsons Prom hat which he promptly changes into. The shuttle arrives and we drive the windy road up to the Telegraph saddle car park.
Mount Oberon Summit Walk
The track up Mount Oberon is actually a fire trail for most of it. So while the incline is steady the surface is nicely compacted with gravel.The 3.4 km walk to the summit is nice and shady beneath the tall trees. The weather is holding out for us so far with only the occasional cloud passing overhead. Harry is excited for the first part of the walk but by the time we are about 2kms in he is complaining. Using the usual bribes of sultanas and tiny teddies he is kept fueled up and continues on.
As we sit atop the mountain we see some dark clouds in the distance moving quickly towards us. A blast of cold icy wind lets us know that, yes that is definitely rain headed for us. We pack up our rubbish and get ready to begin our decent. I know that if we don’t get down the steep parts of the granite and stairs before the rain hits it will be a slippery and possibly dangerous walk down for Harry. We are almost at the bottom of the steep section as the rain hits. It is only light, and lasts about 15 minutes by which time we are back down on the easy gravel track and the canopy of the trees is catching most of the raindrops. I am glad that I packed rain coats and umbrellas though!
We reach the car park and have only just missed the shuttle bus by 2 minutes according to a group of scouts who have just walked back from an overnight trip out to Sealers Cove. I must admit I am filled with admiration and envy as I listen to them talk about their walk. What a great thing for young kids to do. Looking at some of these kids I think it wont be too long before Harry will be up for some bigger hikes like that too.
We finally make it back to Tidal River and decide to head on down to Normans Beach to explore. The rain has passed over for now and it is a perfect time to wander about and soak up the beach.
Before we head back to our cottage for the night we stop in at the wonderful Squeaky Beach. This place is just magic with its lichen covered boulders, soft white sand and big blue sea. We spend an hour weaving our way in and out of the rocks and playing by the creek. It is only our first day in Wilsons Prom and I already smitten. I can’t wait to see more of it over the coming days.
At a Glance
Wilsons Promontory National Park
2 1/2 hours (200km) south-west of Melbourne to park entrance. Allow another 30 minutes to drive down to Tidal River.
Mount Oberon Summit Walk
6.8 kms return walk from Telegraph Saddle car park http://parkweb.vic.gov.au/explore/parks/wilsons-promontory-national-park/things-to-do/day-walks/mount-oberon
various access point, distances and times from Tidal River camping area
300m from Squeaky beach car park