Free Fun at the You Yangs [WeekendNotes, 2015]

I am on a mission to explore the wonderful nature and outdoors within a 20-30km radius of Tarneit, i.e. less than an hour’s drive away. The You Yangs are a short distance from here. They are a distinctive feature in the landscape of Melbourne’s new west. Satisfy your curiosity today! Go check out the massive granite formations that grace our horizon during sunset. This was first published in WeekendNotes, but I thought I would share them here too.

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Free Fun at the You Yangs: Visit a massive granite outcrop
by BT
First published in WeekendNotes

To enjoy a field day gallivanting around big chunks of granite so large they dominate the landscape from miles away, head to the You Yangs.

Take the You Yang Road to the You Yangs. Just 15 - 20 minutes from Wyndham city!
Take the You Yang Road to the You Yangs. Just 15 – 20 minutes from Wyndham city!

The You Yangs are a short hour’s drive away (approx 60 kilometres) from Melbourne city. 24 kilometres in length and rising to approximately 340 metres above sea level, this has got to be one of the top 5 day trips under an hour’s drive from the CBD. Its name originates from the Aboriginal words ‘Wurdi Youang’ or ‘Ude Youang’.

A distinctive feature of Melbourne’s west are the undulating Werribee lava plains between Melbourne and Geelong. And sticking out of these plains are a number of volcanic peaks that, literally, stick out like ‘sore thumbs’ from the relatively flat terrain. I digress, ‘sore’ is probably not the right word – would ‘spectacular’ thumbs do?

Big Rock
Big Rock

However, unlike the other peaks that dot the landscape of Melbourne’s west, the You Yangs is not a volcano but rather a series of granite ridges. It also happens to be one of the driest parts south of the Great Dividing Range with about 450 millimetres of rainfall a year.

The regional park is a great visit for many reasons. For climbers its multitude of dynamic extrusions from the earth offers a variety of workouts. For mountain bikers there are 50 kilometres of trails. For families there are the free electric BBQs and a scattering of tables for a pleasant picnic. Its landscape gives bushwalkers and those wishing to give their pooches a workout, an awesome experience. It is also home to more than 200 bird species.

Great place for a family day out.
Great place for a family day out.

There are a number of trails and ways to explore the area from the one hour hike up to Flinders Peak to the one hour walk around Big Rock. PS: Big Rock is a really big rock, few photos do it justice. It is also really quite cool to be able walk down from the elevated Big Rock without climbing equipment.

Tips:
1. BYO potable drinking water, very little is available in the park.
2. Hats and sunscreen are a must. There is very little shelter.

Opening Hours
7.00am to 5.00pm outside daylight savings
7.00am to 6.00pm during daylight savings

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