Melba Gully - Madsen's Track
ElevationAscent: 176' 54 m
Descent: -177' -54 m
High: 1,244' 379 m
Low: 1,123' 342 m
GradeAvg Grade: 7% (4°)
Max Grade: 24% (14°)
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“"The Jewel of the Otways"”— Tom Robson
After a few bends and a slight uphill, the track presents a worthwhile detour. This added loop brings you to Anne's cascades, one of the more peaceful waterfalls in this area.
From Anne's cascades, continue around the track clockwise as it brings you to the site of the Big Tree; a massive old Otway Messmate, which has fallen and become a nurse log. This log now feeds new life and growth.
From the Big Tree, the track brings runners back to the open picnic area and their car.
Lastly, and perhaps most interestingly, this region is also home to glow worms and the carnivorous Otway Black Snail.
Sawmills were established in the forest and timber tramways were built to carry timber our of the gully. At its peak, there were two sawmills and one tramway in Melba Gully.
Mrs. Jessie Fry named this area "Melba Gully" after Australia's famous singer, Dame Nellie Melba, in 1921. The current picnic area is on the former site of Mrs. Fry's tearooms.
The property was sold in 1958 to Mr. and Mrs. Axel Madsen, who generously donated it to the Victorian Conservation Trust in 1975. The Trust later transferred ownership to the Crown to be managed by Parks Victoria in 2003.
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Land Manager: Parks Victoria