Walking Groups

These are co-operative, self-help walking groups, with a member teaming up with other like minded members to offer to lead a walk of their choice. This is the best way to ensure our walking group remains a viable activity, and also provides a far wider range of options. The conveners are ready to suggest and help to plan walks with members. Thank you to all our leaders for this programme.

Please read these notes

Participants need the fitness necessary to make the distance specified for each walk at a pace to keep up with the group.

It is necessary to book with the leader of each walk.

l0.15am for 10.30am start (unless indicated otherwise).

Members needing assistance with transport, please the walk leader.

Wear name badges on all walks, with emergency details completed.

Wear strong walking shoes or boots and carry warm/waterproof clothing or sun protection as appropriate & also bring your Seniors card.

Bring your own cut lunch, drink, water bottle to carry.

Walks are automatically cancelled when (i) Melbourne forecast is 30 degrees or over; (ii) Total fire ban is declared and (iii) CFA Fire Danger Rating is Severe or above – as per the ABC Weather Report @ 7.25 pm on the day prior to the walk.

Forms to download

Walks Booking Sheet
To be completed by walk leaders for each walk. Download here

Acknowledgement of Risk Form
To be completed by each walker when enrolling. Download here

Incident Report Form
To be completed and submitted to the Secretary for any injury or similar occurrence. Download here

Medical Information Form
To be completed and carried in your U3A name badge holder or First Aid Kit in backpack at all times. Not for collection by U3A Hawthorn. Download here

Walking Trip Information

Shorter Walks on Wednesday (6-8km)

Convener: Marg Deighton

Participants for each walk must register with the walk leader not later than the day before the walk.

We meet for each walk at 10:15AM for a 10:30AM start.

Walks will be cancelled if, on the 7PM news the night before, the forecast maximum temperature is 30 degrees C or more. Also, at the leader’s discretion, if strong winds or heavy rain are forecast.

Bring your own picnic lunch and water supply, and wear appropriate footwear (not sandals).

click to download walks with contact details

Kooyong, St Kevins, Burnley Gardens, Leonda

Approx 8km walk starting at Kooyong Station.

An exploration of local mostly green walk trails, flat, apart from one small climb to Heyington Station and then onto the Burnley Gardens. A mini tour of the gardens including a lunch break and a Yarra side walk back to Swan Street and Leonda. Some people may want to peel off here for easier transport home, otherwise we continue through Fairfield Park, Glenferrie Road and back to Kooyong Station. Lots of parking down by the side of Vision Australia or catch the No16 tram or train to Kooyong Station.

Meet Kooyong Station near the level crossing gates.

Melways Ref: 59 C3
Leader: Clare Carlson

Cranbourne Botanical Gardens

This is an easy 6 km walk along the tracks of this award-winning Australian garden which celebrates the beauty and diversity of Australian flora, landscapes, art and architecture The garden features more than 170,000 individual native plants and it is home to wallabies, possums and the Southern Brown bandicoot.

Take the Monash Freeway (M1) towards Phillip Island, take the exit ramp to South Gippsland Highway (M420) and go through Cranbourne and continue along South Gippsland Highway towards Junction Village. Turn right into Ballarto Road, (the turn-off is located approximately 500m past the Cranbourne Racecourse) and drive to the main entrance. Meet in the car park near the visitor/information centre.

Melway Ref: 133 F10   GPS – 1161 Ballarto Road, Cranbourne
Leader: Marg Deighton.  This was Lily’s walk, planned for last year. Thanks for the planning, Lily.

Eltham Lower Park to Tikalara Park and Return

This 7.5-kilometre walk links the Diamond Creek Track to the Main Yarra Trail. It follows the Yarra River past Petty’s Orchard and its confluence with the Mullum Mullum Creek to a point opposite Tikalara Park. Although there are some sections of boardwalk, most of the footing is firm gravel. There is every likelihood of kangaroo sightings and a wide variety of birds. Despite being shared between walkers and cyclists the track is not a busy one mid-week, but participants should be on the lookout for approaching bicycles. Meet at Eltham Lower Park. Enter the park at Hohnes Road off Main Road, Eltham. Keep right at the roundabout and proceed to the carpark at the Cricket Club pavilion. There is ample parking and a toilet nearby.

Melway Ref: 21 H10
Leaders: Anne & Jeff Lodge

Riverbank Walk – Yarra Bend Park and Fairfield Park

Park on Yarra Boulevard as near to Chandler Highway Bridge as possible. Meet at entrance to Guide Dogs.

We will take the track along the Kew side of the river which has one or two steepish bits but with stunning river views until we reach the Pipe Bridge where we will cross. Toilets are available in the Fairfield Boat House. We will then walk along the Fairfield bank on a little used path in delightful woodland beside the river until we reach the edge of the bat colony where we will turn away from the river, close to the golf driving range, until we reach Yarra Bend Road.  We will follow the road until we get to Fairfield Park. After crossing this we will walk along Park Crescent and back to Chandler Highway bridge.

About 7km. Good walking shoes or boots recommended. Some of the track surfaces are not sealed but are very walkable.

Melway Ref: 45 B1.
Leader: Frank Devlin

Eaglemont, Heidelberg and Ivanhoe

The walk is about 7.5-8 Km around Eaglemont and Ivanhoe. It begins at the Yarra Boulevard passing by interesting houses on one side and Yarra Flats on the other with sometimes Kangaroos grazing there. We then wind up to East Ivanhoe shops through some secret paths where we can have a short coffee and toilet break. There is no toilet at the walk start.

We go up and down ‘The Eyrie’ taking in some beautiful sites with distant views. We visit a Wurrungeree Aboriginal site and then wind down back to the Boulevard via Walter Burley Griffin’s house.

You can park in The Boulevard which has no parking limit (enter via Banksia Street, Heidelberg) near no 653 – it’s not far from Mossman Drive. Just leave plenty of room for the locals to drive by

Bring a packed lunch and water bottle.

Melway Ref: 32 B6. Leader: Moira Brown

Blackburn lake circuit – confirmed

An easy, approximately 6 km walk along one side of Gardiners Creek to Blackburn Lake, where we will have lunch, and then back along the other side of the creek. A connecting street is also involved at one stage.

Meet at Kalang Park, where there are only a few parking spaces, but otherwise you can park in nearby streets.

Melway Ref: 47 H12
Leader: Inge Hanke

WEDNESDAY 14 September
City Yarra walk

This is an approx. 8 km walk along the Yarra into the city and back out again. We will meet at gate A of the Botanic Gardens which is on the corner of Anderson Street and Alexandra Avenue. We are going to walk away from the city along the Yarra and then cross at Chapel Street and come around and back again into Southbank where we can get a coffee and have lunch. And then return back on the other side on the of the river. There is plenty of parking in Alexandra Avenue for a dollar an hour and some free parking in Anderson Street. 
Leader: Alison Talbot 

WEDNESDAY 12 October
Frankston nature conservation reserve

Today’s walk is an easy to moderate 5 km walk along Kookaburra Bush Circuit down towards the water and reservoir of the Conservation Park following onto the Heathland Bush Circuit where we should see a diversity of wildflowers native to the Frankston area before enjoying lunch overlooking the lake at the Watercraft Launch.

From here it is a short 1km walk back to the carpark across the dam wall.

For those of us who would like to walk a bit further, after lunch there is the option to walk the Reservoir Circuit Trail – approx. 5kms taking about 1 and ½ hours back to the carpark.

PLEASE NOTE: There are no toilets at the Reserve with the nearest ones being at McDonalds, corner Moorooduc Hwy and Golflinks Road 5 mins drive from the Reserve. You will drive past this McDonalds on the way to and from the Reserve. (Melways Ref:102 G 7)

Alternatively, there are plenty of trees for privacy, so come prepared!

History of the Park

Frankston Nature and Conservation Reserve is a 98-hectare park of Crown Land built in 1921 on the east branch of Sweetwater Creek as an open Storage water facility for the area. It is now a fully fenced Nature Reservoir managed by Parks Victoria, assisted by an army of volunteers.

Take M11 Freeway and come off at Exit 9 and 10 onto the M3 to Frankston. Cross over Cranbourne Road (diagonally opposite Frankston memorial Park) follow Moorooduc Hwy then RIGHT onto Lawson St access road, then quick LEFT and RIGHT into Lawson Ave, LEFT into Water Way and RIGHT into Jeremy Way into the carpark where there is plenty of parking.

Leader: Ros Izod
Melway Ref:  Map 102 E 10

WEDNESDAY 9 November
Studley Park (Yarra Bend) Ramble

Unfortunately, heavy rain over the last few weeks has caused closure of part of the track around the Blue Lake, the previously advertised walk, and made other sections of the Yellow Gum Park slippery and unsafe. 

Shirley has suggested the following alternative walk along the Yarra:

Studley Park (Yarra Bend) Ramble

The Yarra River is bursting with energy and overflowing on to its surrounding tracks, but there’s plenty of grassland to walk on.  We will start at Kane’s Bridge and meander to Dight’s Falls; from there we will join the Merri Creek track to Quarries Park (and if you’re so inclined, we can walk the labyrinth nearby).  Then we will cross the bridge to re-join the track on the other side of the creek and head up to Fairfield Park.  From there, we will head back to the car park either on the track along the Yarra, or if it’s closed, we can walk through the park.  About 6 K.  All we need is reasonable weather.

Meet in the Studley Park Boathouse carpark at 10.15 for 10.30 start.  There are toilets (and coffee) at each end of the park.  

Leader: Shirley Wardell

Melway Ref: Map 2D, F8

Metro Walks (Third Tuesday of the month)

click to download second half 2022 walks with contact details

Convener: Lorraine Doyle

We meet for each walk at 9.50AM for a 10:00AM start.

Walks will be cancelled if, on the 7PM news the night before, the forecast maximum temperature is 30 degrees C or more. Cancellation may also occur at the leader’s discretion, if strong winds or heavy rain are forecast.

Bookings: It is necessary to book with the leader of each walk. Members are expected to participate in all the walks, except where extended leave of absence is due to illness, overseas travel or other personal reasons. If there is a waiting list for this group, you may forfeit your place if you are absent for more than 2 walks without notifying the conveners.

Only members of U3A Hawthorn who are enrolled in this course may attend the walks.

Meeting Points/Time: 9.50am for a 10.00am start (unless indicated otherwise)) at the designated meeting place on the program.
Transport: Members needing assistance with transport should contact the walk leader.
Name Badges: Wear U3A name badges on all walks together and carry a current Medical Information form in case of an Emergency.

Additionally, ensure you have filled out the Acknowledgement of Risk form as well as the Coronavirus form that you should have filled out at the beginning of your first class of the year and left at the office.

TUESDAY 15 March
Hartwell Anniversary Trail

Meet at Hartwell Station at the entrance to the outbound side of the track at 9.50 am for a 10 am start. We will follow the trail that runs through Camberwell and Canterbury as far as Whitehorse Road where we will stop for coffee at Town and Country before making the return journey to Hartwell station. There is enough parking in the street as many are still working from home.

Melway Map: 61 C4
Leader: Lorraine Doyle

Distance: Approx 6 km

TUESDAY 19 April
Malvern /Caulfield

Meet at Malvern East station on the outbound side where we will follow the green wedge to East Malvern, and then make our way through the urban forest and Boyd Park to Railway Parade Hughesdale, looping back and returning to the station where we began. We will stop for coffee half way opposite Hughesdale station

Melway Map: 69 B1
Leader: Lorraine Doyle

Distance: Approx 5 km

Hay’s Paddock, Kew East via outer circle

Meeting at Hay’s Paddock off Leason St, Kew East walking to Whitehorse Rd Deepdene where we stop for coffee at Town and Country café before returning a similar path back to where we began.

Leader: Bev Devidas
Melway Map: 45 J2

Distance: 5km

“Walking the Yarra Paths” (2 hours plus coffee extra)

Start at 10 am. Meet at Yarra Park Reserve. There is limited parking in Creswick Street Hawthorn and riverbank parking at the end of Denham Street, (near Richmond/Hawthorn bridge). Otherwise trams 48 and 75 are close by Stop 23.

Walk starts on the Yarra River East bank and continues north to Collingwood Farm/Abbotsford Convent. Return via back roads and parkland to Walmer Street Kew ending at the starting place via the west side of the Yarra River. Note: Several flights of steps en route.

Melway Map: 44 J/K 9/10.

Leader: Lorraine Doyle

Ashburton to Burwood

Beginning at Alamein station we walk towards Warrigal Road and follow the Gardiners Creek Trail to Highbury Road, Burwood where we have a coffee stop at Bells and Whistles before returning to Alamein station. This walk is mostly flat.

We will meet at Alamein station (Ashburn Grove) at 9.50 for a 10 o’clock start. Please ring me by 9.55am if you are running late. Parking is available in the street opposite the inbound line (Glen Iris side) Laurel Ave.

Melway Map: 60 d11
Leader: Lorraine Doyle

Distance: 7 km

TUESDAY 16 August
Camberwell Station to Maling Road, Canterbury

The walk will take in mainly paths and quiet streets around Camberwell and Canterbury. The walk will begin at Camberwell station. Meet at the entrance to the walking bridge over the railway line on the inbound side of the track. Coffee will be at Chapter 3 in Maling Road, Canterbury before the return walk.

Leader: Lorraine Doyle

Distance: 5 km return    
Melway Map: 45 J11

TUESDAY 20 September
Malvern EAST to Oakleigh

The walk will begin at Malvern East station. Meet at the entrance to the station on the inbound side of the track. From there we will walk from there across Waverley Road and through the green wedge (Urban Forest) to Hughesdale station and along the High rail path to Oakleigh station. Coffee will be in the Oakleigh Mall before our return to Malvern East.

Leader: Lorraine Doyle 0402 476 387 or 98850415

Distance: 7 km return    
Melway Map:  69 B1

TUESDAY 18 October
Anniversary Trail, ASHBURTON/GLEN IRIS Ferndale Park

Our walk for this month will begin and finish at Alamein station, Ashburton. We will meet at  at 9.50 am for a 10 o’clock start. Please ring me by 9.55am if you are running late.

Coffee will be at The Pantry, the half way mark of the walk.

The distance covered is approximately 7 km

Melways ref. Map 60 D11

Leader: Lorraine Doyle

TUESDAY 15 November

Williamstown (greater detail will be emailed to you the week before)

We all need to meet at Southern Cross station where we will take the train to Williamstown to begin our walk. This walk will be longer than usual, so our usual coffee break will most likely be lunch. As it is our last one for the year it will be a nice way to finish up. Finish time back at Southern Cross approximately 1.30pm.

Moderate Walking Group

Conveners: Inge and Franz Hanke

The Moderate Walking Group is a co-operative, self-help group with members offering to lead a walk of their choice. This is the best way to involve everybody and provide a far wider range of options. The co-ordinators are ready to suggest and help to plan walks with members. Thank you to all our leaders for this programme.

Fitness: Participants need the fitness necessary to make the distance specified for each walk at a pace to keep up with the group.

Bookings: It is necessary to book with the leader of each walk.

Meeting Points/Time: 10.15am for 10.30am start (unless indicated otherwise)) at the designated meeting place on the program.

Transport: Members needing assistance with transport should contact the walk leader. Car- pooling is strongly recommended for long distances.

Name Badges: Wear U3A name badges on all walks with emergency details completed and carry a current Medical Information form in case of an Emergency.

Gear: Wear strong walking shoes/boots, take sticks /poles for rough slippery terrain and carry warm/waterproof clothing or sun protection as appropriate. Bring your Seniors card, a personal First-Aid Kit, whistle and a compass.

Lunch: Bring your own lunch, drink, water bottle in your day pack.

Cancellation: Walks are automatically cancelled when (i) Melbourne forecast is 30 degrees or over; (ii) Total fire ban is declared and (iii) CFA Fire Danger Rating is Severe or above – as per the ABC Weather Report @ 7.25 pm on the day prior to the walk. Walks can also be cancelled at the discretion of the walk leader and/or Convener/s.

Acknowledgement of Risk: An Acknowledgement of Risk form must be signed and returned to Reception or the Course Convenor before participating in this activity.

click to download Term 1 2022 walks with contact details

George Bass Coastal Walk

This is an easy/medium walk of approximately 14km from Punchbowl Road car park to Shelley Beach, near Kilcunda, and then back.

Meet at Anderson roundabout car park (toilets here, but not at the lunch stop) at 10.15am, then we need to drive a further 3.5km to Punchbowl Road car park.

Getting there: Take the South Gippsland Hwy, M420, to Anderson roundabout car park. Distance from Glen Waverley 100km, approximately 1 hour’s drive.

Melway Ref: Map X912 Q11
Leader: Franz Hanke

Merricks to Red Hill and Return

A pleasant 13 kilometre walk through varied farmland with good views across open, undulating fields. Glimpses of Western Port, Phillip Island and the Nobbies are highlights of the early section of the track. The second half of the track follows the easement of the former railway and is more shaded with an easy gradient. The track surface is unsealed, mainly in good condition but with some areas of loose gravel and protruding tree roots. Walking poles could be useful. Lunch will be eaten in the park at Red Hill before returning the same way.

Getting there: From Camberwell take the Monash Freeway Southbound to Exit 19 and join the M420. At the intersection with the South Gippsland Highway continue straight ahead to join the M780, Westernport Highway (a.k.a. The Dandenong – Hastings Road). Continue along this road to its intersection with C777, the Frankston-Flinders Road. Turn left and continue several kilometres to the Station Ground Recreation Reserve (Merricks Pony Club) on the right. If you pass the Merricks General Wine Store you have gone too far.

Alternatively: From the Peninsula Link Freeway take the Frankston – Flinders Road to the Station Ground Recreation Reserve (Merricks Pony Club) just before, but close to, the Merricks General Wine Store, (3460 Frankston – Flinders Road).

There is adequate parking just inside the main gate near the mobile telephone transmission tower. Toilets are located here and at the lunch stop. Melways Reference: 192; F9. Also see pages 13 & 17 for area maps.

Leaders: Anne & Jeff Lodge

You Yangs Walk

We will do 3 walks.

  1. Flinders Peak, 2.4km return, 1 hour. Easy/medium
  2. Flinders Peak circuit, 4.1km, 1.5 hours. Easy/medium
  3. Branding Yard circuit, 5.2km, 1.5 hours. Easy

Meet at the Turntable car park at the end of Turntable Drive, You Yangs Regional Park

Getting there: From Melbourne take the Princes Freeway past Werribee to the Little River turnoff. Continue west 6km into Little River, then a further 10km west following the signs to the You Yangs Regional Park.

Melway Ref. Key Map, page 11, C11
Leader: Franz Hanke

Yarra Bend Park Walk, Studley Park Boathouse to Fairfield Park Boathouse, and back

This is an easy/moderate walk of about 11km along both banks of the Yarra River in Kew/Fairfield. It is largely a dirt track with only a few small hills to climb, but there may be some mud pools if rain falls. Hence walking boots are recommended. Lunch will be at the public seating area beside the Fairfield Park Boathouse. Bring your own, or hot food and drinks should be available at the Boathouse. The return route involves a short stretch along the Merri Creek. If necessary, it is possible to shortcut south along Yarra Bend Road to Kane’s Bridge, cutting out the Merri Creek part and shortening the walk by a couple of kilometres. Flush toilets are available at both boathouses, and halfway along the outward leg.
Meet at Studley Park Boathouse, Yarra Boulevard, Kew (specifically the closest car park to Kane’s Bridge).
Melway Ref: Map 44H4
Leader: Franz Hanke (on behalf of Nigel Flannigan)

Yarra River Walk

This is an easy walk along the Yarra River of approximately 14km from Westerfold Park, Templestowe, to Beasley’s Nursery, and then back. Toilet facilities are at both ends with the option for a coffee/toilet break at Petty’s Orchard on the way. There’s an eating area by Beasley’s Nursery to have lunch, and food and drinks can be purchased at the nursery cafe if desired.
Getting there:  Meet at Porter Street picnic car park area. Approximately 20 minutes from Camberwell via Elgar Rd., Williamsons Rd. and Fitzsimmons Lane. Preferably enter Porter St. via Anderson St., off Foote St., given roadworks are being undertaken in Fitzsimmons Lane.
Melway Ref: Map 33 3D
Leaders: David and Roslyn White

THURSDAY 25 August
Mount Lofty Walk, in the Warrandyte State Park, at Wonga Park

The walk will be a clockwise loop as this will leave the steeper section towards the end of the walk. It is a 6km walk, but it can be lengthened by extending the loop after completing the first 2/3 of the walk. There are a couple of climbs in the walk and a few viewing spots over the Yarra. As there are no toilets along this walk, it may be necessary to have a toilet stop in Warrandyte.
Meet at Wittons Reserve Carpark, next to the Yarra River, Wonga Park
Melway Ref: 24 K6 and/or 279 A6
Leader: Peter Slane

THURSDAY 22 September
Ship Rock Falls Picnic Area, Kurth Kiln Regional Park, past Gembroo

The walk is through scenic, shady and undulating bush country, generally on walking trails for about 6 or 7 km to the lunch stop at Kurth Kiln Picnic Ground, where there are shelter and toilets. After lunch the return to the Ship Rock Falls Picnic Area will be by a different, shorter 4 or 5 km route.
Meet at Ship Rock Falls Picnic Area
Getting there: Driver to Gembrook, which is about 55km east of U3A Hawthorn. Suggested route is via Emerald, either along the M1 and then Wellington Rd., or along Burwood Highway via Belgrave. From Gembrook drive north on the C424 Gembrook- Launching Place Road (which is all bitumen) for 11 kms to Ship Rock Falls Picnic Ground, which is on the left. If you arrive early, you can take a short walk to the Ship Rock Falls, which are a 5 minute walk from the car park.
Melway Ref: Key Map 14 R10
Leaders: Alan and Joan McCann

THURSDAY 27 October
Sugarloaf Reservoir, Yarra Valley

The walk, a medium grade 15km circuit, follows the perimeter of the reservoir in a clockwise direction, with some steep sections, but excellent water views. It is possible to shorten the walk if we decide on a car shuffle.
Meet at Ridgeway Picnic Area Car Park, nearest to the toilets.
Melway Ref: Map 273 B2
Leader: Franz Hanke

THURSDAY 24 November
O‘Shannassy Aquaduct Trail, Yarra Ranges

This is a medium grade walk, 14km return.
Meet at Yuonga Road Carpark. Public toilets only in the township of Warburton.
Melway Ref: Map 290 E2
Leader: Franz Hanke