About a month ago, while trawling the Internet, I come across a hike in the Otway’s to a couple of spots Lower and Upper Kalimna Falls.

I set out to find them.

To reach Lower and Upper Kalimna Falls, you need to park at Sheoak Falls picnic area.

For some reason, Google maps (and I) got a bit confused, and on the first attempt we ended up at Sheoak Falls carpark – where we then walked to Sheoak Falls picnic area. Sheoak Falls is very pretty, and we also come across some other really pretty waterfalls that day, so it wasn’t a total bust.

The second time (now that I clearly understood the difference between Sheoak picnic area, and Sheoak Falls carpark), Google maps was saying I was 5 minutes away. Then it said I was 60 minutes away. I couldn’t work out what I’d done wrong, so I checked out Erskine Falls instead (where there’s a longer trail from the carpark for those that want more hiking).

Then, last Saturday, while walking with a friend to Allenvale, we stumbled onto Sheoak picnic area. I stopped dead in my tracks, told her the stories of trying to find this spot, and decided to go back the next day.

Regular readers will know my love (obsession) with the Otway’s – every time I go there, I find another spot that becomes my ‘new favourite’. The towering gums, picturesque rivers, lush green valleys – and sweeping ocean views – never disappoint. Add to that list, the most amazing waterfalls that will take your breath away.

Winter is the perfect time to check out the walks here. No crowds, cool and misty conditions, and rivers and waterfalls with furiously pumping water. There are also many hiking trails that are closed or impassable at the moment though – so take care, and do not attempt to cross overflowing rivers, or trails that are under water.

At Lower Kalimna Falls, you can walk in the cave behind the falls over to the other side. Hearing and feeling the power of the waterfall overhead is something that words won’t do justice to – you simply must experience it for yourself. It’s nature’s power and beauty at it’s finest.

Then, another short walk takes you to Upper Kalimna Falls. Standing on the viewing platform here, I took a few moments to close my eyes, feel the mist from the waterfall on my face, and take in the sounds of the pounding water and gentle birdsong.

otways hiking

Kalimna Falls trail

great ocean road

Kalimna Falls trail

otways bushwalking

Lower Kalimna Falls

great ocean road hiking

Steps down to Upper Kalimna Falls

otways bushwalking

Upper Kalimna Falls

What you need to know: Upper & Lower Kalimna Falls

Where: As you enter Lorne, you’ll pass Foodworks supermarket on your right. At the next roundabout, turn right into Otway street (there’s a sign to Erskine Falls). Follow the road around to the left, and at the next roundabout, take the exit with the signs to Allenvale Cottages/Qdos arts. Follow the road until it becomes a dirt road, keep going over a single lane bridge, Qdos arts café on your left, and Allenvale Cottages on your right. Stay on the road, and you’ll eventually come to Sheoak picnic area.

Distance: Lower Falls – 6.5 km; Upper Falls – 8.5 km – I did both, and come back via the Garvey track.

Notes: This is an easy walk, pretty flat, with only a small section of climbing (on the way back when taking the Garvey trail). Take care though – lots of the trail is slippery, and under water or partially under water at the moment, so grab a stick and take it slow.

Do you want to experience this walk for yourself? Then come along with us on Sunday 7th August 2016.

Bio: Sam is a daydreamer, storyteller, and hiker. She loves getting outside, and you’ll often find her on the bushwalking trails close to her hometown of Geelong. You can follow along with her on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. If you have any questions that she can help with, or would like to chat about possible sponsored opportunities, advertising, or affiliations (that will benefit her audience) please drop her an email at hello@ihearthiking.com.au.

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