We arrived at the park a little after 11am and decided on the Centenary Walk, a 4km track that would take approximately 2.5 hours. We must have been terrible navigators because we spent such a long time trying to find the start of the track. We parked our car further up, and thought we had to pass through the Quarry Picnic Area to access the walk. After spending 45 minutes walking around in circles (we probably encountered the same couple having a picnic about 5 times), we finally realised the track began where we parked our car!
This was our best friend for most of the walk. They were sporadic so we tried our best to be vigilant in keeping an eye out for them.
After a short walk we arrived at a cliff looking upon Junction Pool, and I thought this was the most beautiful part of the walk. We wondered if we were allowed to swim or soak in the pool because it had such an amazing backdrop! If it is permitted we will probably come back and just chill out here one day.
Unfortunately, this was where things started to get a little 'interesting'. Wanting to continue on our walk, we followed the sign to Island Lookout, which pointed to the direction of the pool and beyond. We thought we had to cross a creek at some point, so decided to continue our hike along a path that looked slightly trodden. We should have realised something was off as it was getting very, very difficult. Unfortunately, it wasn't before I walked into a tree branch that we decided to turn back. With one hand trying to soak up blood from the side of one eye, and tingling in the other presumably from ant bites when I had slipped, we were going to call it a day and return to the car.
Luckily for us, we bumped into a lovely lady who told us that the sign was pointing the wrong way, and that the way to W. James Whyte Island Reserve was in another direction. I wish we had realised that earlier! Finally, we were back on track on a well-paved path. My cuts had stopped bleeding as well. Things were looking good.
The climb up the hill is not to be underestimated though. With the sun in our faces, the ascend proved to be quite challenging and we were stopping every few minutes to catch our breath. However, we were rewarded with expansive views. No regrets!
When we reached the top, there was an additional 1km lookout circuit and we were treated to sweeping views of Melbourne CBD, You Yangs and beyond. The return journey was relatively easy as we didn't get lost. Yay!
With all our wrong turns and accidents, the walk ended up taking about 4 hours. It was quite an adventure and I came back with some battle scars, but we are determined to take this as a valuable lesson and conquer the circuit walk on our next visit.