I am a Freelance Writer-Photographer and Novelist. I travel to find inspiration, wherever the distant horizons lead.
Published December 28th 2013
Harry Potter's Forest Came to Town
Here is a forest that is close at hand, full of living fossils, and I don't mean you will be eaten by Tyrannosaursus Rex! It feels like a lost world of some ancient forest, both magical and errie. Pick any place with forest that is still and peaceful, and full of wonder and see if it compares!
If you explore the road to Mount Donna Buang, about 8 or 9 kilometres from Warburton, you will find some beautiful untouched forest laced with tree ferns, and an understory of ground ferns that you will find hard to equal.
Here grows a stand of trees that are living fossils, that originated between 65 to 165 million years ago. The super continent Gwondanaland was still in existence, before Continental Drift resulted in the world we know today.
Nothofagus Cunninghamii or Myrtle Beeches are a tall upright tree with small leaves similar to those found in northern rain forests. You will see them in The Tarkine Wilderness Tasmania, and they existed near Marysville, all though I am not sure of their survival through Black Saturday of 2009.
You will also find a platform that takes you to 15 meters above the forest floor. It has easy access, running horizontally from the roadside as the hillside falls away. It provides a special opportunity if you have mobility challenges. The metal grid floor of the platform, might be a bumpy cattle grid like experience for a wheel chair, but is possible. There is a short walk to the forest floor, with formed walkways and hand rails. The lower section runs for a few hundred meters, and has a steep set of steps running down to stands of ferns that can only be rivalled but not exceeded across much of Australia.
The township of Warburton has cafes, antique shops, speciality shops and generally speaking, full amenities. The infant Yarra River passes through town too, and has a few picnic tables dotted around the banks. Mount Donna Buang has views, walks, and sometimes a dusting of snow in Winter.