Updated: Apr 2, 2022
This hidden gem of a hike near Cape Paterson at Harmers Haven is a great half day adventure which includes lush coastal tea tree woodlands, singing birds and the beautiful rock hopping Cutlers Beach. The hike remains almost entirely flat and easy to navigate making it perfect for hikers of all levels and abilities.
To get to the start point of this hike you will need to drive into Harmers Haven either via Berrys Road or via Wilsons Road. Once in Harmers Haven, turn down Viminaria Road and follow it right to the end past an sealed intersection with Olearia Street until reaching the carpark from which the walk commences.
Starting from the carpark the hike follows the track adjacent to the carpark to the right along the fence before a short stint along sandy track and through winding native coastal bush. For the first section of the hike the trail slowly angulates up and down before flattening off and entering a dense Coastal Tea Tree woodland which can make you feel as if you are walking through the fantasy forests seen in movies such as lord of the rings. Shortly past this you will past a sign which warns of no horse riding or motor biking before arriving at a bench in memory of the naturalist Sherry Collins. After passing by the bench and possibly taking some time to rest you will find the path opening up out into a large area of native ferns for a few kilometres.
Continuing to walk further you will reach the intersection with Cutlers Beach, the sign warns of strong currents, unexpected large waves, submerged objects and unstable cliffs. This is all for good reason as the beach can be quite rough and wild which you will surely find out when walking the small path which is the steepest part of the hike and walking out into the open beach covered in the ancient rock formations of the Bass Coast. The rocks on the beach can provide for a great opportunity to do some rock hopping and can make for a good little adventure. When ready to return back to the carpark you can walk back up the hill to the trail which is as was previously said the steepest part of the entire walk with a small little climb up the hill to the track.
As you walk back along the same trail as you took to get to the beach the walk remains just as easy on the way back as it was on the way there. The bench once again offers a great opportunity for a small break if you need one or a good opportunity to stop and take in the beautiful area you are surrounded by. As you walk you will find the track is pretty well covered with the exception of the final 1.5km back to the carpark which can be a little bit exposed but the sea breeze from being closer to the coast can offset the sunny feeling. Not much further after passing the fence section you should arrive back at the carpark you started your hike from and head home.
Where: End of Viminaria Road, Harmers Haven
Distance: 7 KM (return)
Packing: Day Hike Packing Guide
Travel Time: 2 hours, 20 minutes (from Melbourne CBD)
Start/Finish Point: End of Viminaria Road
Duration: 2 Hours
Written by Josh Welch