Distance: 11 Km | Duration: 3 Hrs | Grade: Grade 3 | Rating: | Style: One Way | Map
About the Walk
This walk, along mostly minor roads and roadsides, in mostly cleared country for the top of Mount Franklin to Jim Crow Creek near Franklinford, seeks to interpret the volcanic plains country and changes to the landscape during the contact period between 1838 and the settler re-discovery of gold in 1851. It traverses and interprets much of the former Mt Franklin Aboriginal Protectorate (1842-9), one of the best-documented (but not publicly recognised) sites of early Aboriginal contact in south-eastern Australia. The first and final parts of the walk include a walk around the Mount Franklin crater rim, and Clarkes Pool, on a billabong on Jim Crow Creek.
The Walk in Detail
Start the walk at the car park inside the MOunt Franklin crater (Grid Refernece (GR) 473719). Follow the walking track which initially starts north-west and curves right around to south-east before swinging left and up a steep clmb, including some steps, to meet a gravel road on the rim tothe north fo the crater. Walk 1.5km on this road, past the fire tower, around the rim and down to the bottom of the crater and the car park at the start of the walk. Leave the crater via the bitumen Mount Franklin Road and walk 1.5km back to Midland Highway. Cross to the left (west) side of the highway with care and walk 500m to Carrolls Lane at GR 461721. Follow this gravel road (west) for 2km to the junction with hepburn-Newstead Road at GR 440722. Turn right and walk along the side of the bitument road for 2.5km to the junction with South Street at GR 438746. Turn left along South Street at the Franklinford sign, passing the Aboriginal school site, to Clarkes Road. Turn right for aobut 50m then left to take a short side trip to both the Franklinford Spring and Cemetery before returning to Clarkes Road at Clarkes Pool on Jim Crow Creek (GR 429471). This is the end of the walk. Execute the car shuffle to return the walkers back to base.
Getting ThereFrom base (Hepburn Primary School), drive east to the junction of Main Road and Route C138, and turn left (north), initially on Mineral Springs Crescent an Forest Avenue then Back Hepburn Road, following it to a T intersection with the Midland Highway (A300). Turn left (north) and drive for about 4.3km, to Mount Franklin Road on the right. Follow this road 1.5km to the end within the volcanic crater. This is the start of the walk. Cars needed to be at the finish of the wal for the casr shuffle should return via Mount Franklin Road to the Midland Highway and turn right. Drive north for just over 1km and turn left onto Powell Extension Road. Continue for about 3km to Franklinford and turn left onto Clarkes Road. follow this road to the end at Clarkes Pool and the end of the walk.
Take care crossing roads, e.g. the Midland Highway, and watch for road traffic while walking along the side of sealed or gravel roads. Some steeper gravel roads could be slippery.