Park Update Autumn-Winter

Dave Roberts

Planning works

Cultural Heritage Management Plan field work has been occurring since late May 2017, which will provide management advice around sites of Aboriginal significance including:

  • The Grampians Peaks Trail Walking track alignment
  • The GPT hiker camp locations
  • The new campground at Dead Bullock Creek
  • The formalisation of campgrounds at Coppermine Tk, Long Point West, Long Point East
  • The walking track realignments at Briggs Bluff, Ngamadjidj Art shelter and Golton Gorge
  • And Carparks/Trailheads for the GPT, Dead Bullock Creek and Ngamadjidj.

This planning work will be finalised and approvals granted by the end of September which will mean works associated with Fire Recovery can commence and the GPT development is a step closer to construction on the new stages.

Conserving Victoria’s Special Places

The Environment & Heritage team have been actively working on key landscape projects including Grampians Ark (Fox Control), Sallow Wattle Containment, Herbivore control (Deer & Goat), broader reserve management and fire ecology. Of note is the recent project managed by Mike Stevens around using Volunteers from the Sporting Shooters Association and Australian Deer Association to undertake Targeted Deer and Goat control in sensitive ecosystems. This effort, complimented by our staff and contractor programs will grow the program whereby we can become more effective in our introduced herbivore program.

The team successfully completed another round of Rock Art conservation works in May, which focused on sites in the Black Range SP and surrounding reserves where graffiti and other visitor impacts are being managed and mitigated.

Connecting People & Parks

Our assets team have recently completed an upgrade to the Pinnacle viewpoint with new timber treads. This compliments works completed at Boroka lookout and upcoming improvement works at Reeds lookout/Balconies walking track. The team have also taken delivery  of a new Grader which will greatly assist the team in delivering its annual road management program.

Our visitor & community team have put the finishing touches on the soon to be published and released Accessibility Guide for the Park which incorporates new features like Trailrider information and improved maps.

The year has been very successful for Volunteer engagement and contribution. Caitlyn O’Reilly our Volunteer Coordinator has worked with a diverse range of volunteers achieving over 5500hrs of effort across the entire park area. Caitlyn’s role as it currently stands will unfortunately finish on the 30th June 2017, as it was funded through funding received from the 2014 Northern Grampians Fire. Parks Victoria is exploring alternative funding sources to continue the position as the value is clear and the opportunities are there to continue and grow Volunteer opportunities in the Park.

Providing Benefits Beyond Boundaries

Our Fire & Emergency Team had a quiet Fire Season (thankfully), but have been very active in Fuel Reduction burning, planning and delivery. The Park is implementing its winter burning regime through our heathlands with good results. This type of burning is growing in its importance and is perhaps a window into how the landscape was managed 160years ago.

Key strategic township burns around Ararat, Stawell, Halls Gap and Dunkeld will be a key focus in the next 6-12 months.