This ride might start in the same spot as Hit the Wall, but it’s definitely preferable if you are not a fan of climbing. A beautiful introduction to the Dandenong Ranges, away from the crowds and cliffs on the city side with some pleasant singletrack beside some forest giants. It is an ideal trip for less experienced biking skill and an ideal loop to do a couple of laps if you are fitter.
Starting off in Melbourne Water territory, this ride quickly heads into a section of the Dandenong Ranges National Park where many of the tracks have numbers rather than names.
The first section is the same as for Hit the Wall, using Circuit Track, Messmate Track, and Olinda Creek Track before heading down to the cool surroundings of the creek itself and climbing onto Track 11 for the climb out of the valley. There is a nice stretch of singletrack on the left after you pass a fenced Melbourne Water area and then head further into the park on Tracks 18 and 13. Georges Track leads to another section of obscured singletrack called Possum Track, which had a fallen tree over it. This leads through to a gravel road that takes you back to Georges Track Bridge Track. This is another nicely shaded part before a couple of zigzagging sections bring you to Bulldog Avenue, which has some sweet eroded bank jumps but some slippery clay to watch out for in the wet. The last section mimics Hit the Wall, with the series of rollovers along Centre Track taking you back to Silvan Road and its singletrack section on the right. This ride can be chilly in winter, but is not as exposed as some of our trips in the higher parts of the Dandenongs and it never gets busy.
The ride includes a pleasant singletrack, gravel road, and fire trail. There are some erode bank jumps in Bulldog Avenue.
This ride is located in Silvan, approx. 70km (60-minutes-drive) east of Melbourne. Turn right on Anderson Street from Lilydale (Sign: ‘C401 Montrose’) and drive through Mount Evelyn on Lilydale-Monbulk Road (C401/C404). Turn right in Silvan at Stonyford Road and stop in the Silvan Reservoir Picnic Ground car park, the second one on the left (Melway 120 H11).
- Train: Take the train to Lilydale, ride up the Warburton rail trail to Mount Evelyn then turn right on Monbulk Road to Silvan.
Food and drink
Stock up before you come as the only café in Silvan had closed its. Consider a picnic at the reservoir and carry plenty of water on the ride, especially on hot days.
There are a number of walking tracks near the reservoir, which are outlined on the Parks Victoria website, including the Olinda Creek Track.
- 0.0 Reset your computer near the BBQ shelter in the lowest corner of the picnic ground car park, ride back out through the gates and cross Stonyford Rd.
- 0.2 Turn right on the singletrack on the far side of the road.
- 0.3 Turn left into the overflow car park. Go past the green water tanks and through a gap beside the gate. Turn right almost immediately uphill.
- 0.5 Continue on Circuit Track.
- 0.9 Turn left at ‘Circuit Tk’ sign on the singletrack that joins Messmate Track.
- 1.5 Bear left and then bear right at the Y-intersection (not down the steps) on Olinda Creek Track.
- 2.2 Turn left at the T-intersection on Olinda Creek Track.
- 2.3 Turn right at Grey Gum Track then turn left immediately at the ‘To Olinda Creek Tk’ sign. Cross the creek on the bridge after the steps.
- 2.5 Turn left at the ‘Mt Evelyn Reserve 4km’ sign and follow Track 11 uphill. Look for a singletrack option on the left after the Melbourne Water gates.
- 3.4 Bear right at the Y-intersection onto Track 18 with the creek on your left.
- 4.6 Turn left at T-intersection onto Track 13.
- 5.0 Turn right following Track 13.
- 5.2 Turn left at Olinda Creek Rd and right at the gate onto Georges Track.
- 6.1 Turn left onto Possum Track. This is an obscured singletrack, watch for ‘Georges Rd’ sign on the right after a short climb to find it.
- 6.6 Turn right at T-intersection onto Hermons Track.
- 7.1 Bear left back onto Georges Track.
- 7.3 Keep left at Rifle Range Gully Rd.
- 7.6 Turn right at Boundary Track, look for an opening on the left almost immediately and turn left on Bridge Track which is unsigned.
- 8.2 Turn right onto Prices Track.
- 9.1 Turn left at the gate onto Boundary Rd for a short climb.
- 9.8 Turn left onto Silvan Rd.
- 9.9 Turn left onto Bulldog Ave. Enjoy the erosion banks but take care if slippery.
- 10.6 Turn right onto Prices Track.
- 11.0 Turn left onto Camberlain Track at the crossroads.
- 11.4 Turn right at Eagle Nest Rd.
- 11.9 Turn left onto Centre Track (obscured) and enjoy the rollovers.
- 12.8 Go straight ahead at end of Centre Track, following Silvan Rd back to the reservoir using the singletrack.
- 14.0 Turn right back into picnic ground car park.
- 14.2 Finish at the BBQ shelter.
12.893 km / 8.011 mi
534 m / 1,752 ft
411 m / 1,348 ft
385 m / 1,262 ft