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Walk 29: Sheoak Picnic Ground Nature Walk
The track meanders through ferny glades, tall Manna Gums and a dense understorey of native vegetation. The track was constructed in 1993 with the help of students and staff at the then named Ballarat College of Advanced Education. Interpretative signs along the track give simple explanations regarding the flora, fauna and general environment.
Sheoak Picnic Ground on Garvey Track
30 minutes – 1.3 km circuit
How to get there

Drive west on the Great Ocean Road and cross the Erskine River bridge at Lorne. Take the first turn right into Otway Street, which becomes Allenvale Road. Continue until you reach the roundabout 1 km from the bridge. Veer right and then turn left following the Allenvale Road sign. Continue along this road until you reach the Sheoak Picnic Ground 3.5 km from the roundabout. There are toilets, an information board, picnic tables and gas barbecues.

Walk Notes
Blue-winged Parrot

Follow the Nature Walk sign from near the notice board in the picnic ground. Take the left side track. The track will take you through a ferny glade with tall Manna Gums overhead, and Hazel Pomaderris, Prickly Currant-bush and Musk Daisy-bush forming the main understorey. If you stand beside the trees you can marvel at their height. Cross Sheoak Creek on a well-constructed suspension bridge. Walking at night you may see Glow-worms in this vicinity.

The track then leads you through an area of tall arching tree ferns. Both the Soft and the Rough Tree Ferns are present. If you are tall enough to touch the fronds where they join the trunk you will feel they are either smooth or rough.

The track rises slightly with some good views over the ferny gully. After a short time there is a branch to the left that leads to Garvey Track. Ignore that and follow the ‘Nature Walk’ sign to the right. As you walk along look for V-shaped scars on the tree trunks formed by the Yellow-bellied Gliders as they cut into the trunks with their teeth and suck the sap for food.

Birds are also a feature, and you should hear various bird calls and possibly observe some birds amongst the dense vegetation. Crescent Honeyeaters can be heard frequently calling and consistently offer good sightings. Glimpses of the creek can be obtained as you walk along. The track branches once again with the left branch leading to the coast. Turn right at this point and follow the Nature Walk across the small wooden bridge over the fern-lined creek and back to the car park. On this section of the track look for Koalas that can sometimes be seen in the tops of the trees. Swamp Wallabies are often seen in the area.

Bird Calls
Grey Fantail
White-plumed Honeyeater
Crescent Honeyeater (Phylidonyris pyrrhopterus)

Grey Fantail (Recording by Marc Anderson, CC BY); White-plumed Honeyeater (Recording by Marc Anderson, CC BY); Crescent Honeyeater (Recording by Marc Anderson CC BY)

Check Out Fauna & Flora Below

Crescent Honeyeater (Photo by JJ Harrison CC BY)
Hazel Pomaderris (Photo by Murray Fagg, CC BY)
Swamp Wallaby (Photo by Mark Norman, CC BY)

Glow-worms (Photo by Sean Mckinnon CC BY)
Koala (stretching up) (Photo by David Paul, CC BY)
Rough Tree-fern (Photo by Alison Watson)
Soft Tree-fern (Photo by Alison Watson)

Manna Gum (Photo by Murray Fagg, CC BY)
Musk Daisy-bush (Photo by Ellinor Campbell)
Prickly Current-bush (Photo by Ellinor Campbell)
Yellow-bellied Glider (Photo by Keith McLean)