There is now a rideable version of the Yellowbelly Track that includes substantial sections of river track in National Parks.
Yesterday (Friday 17/03/23) ParksVic re-opened a substantial section of Lower Goulburn National Park (LGNP) after it had been closed for flood damage. Luckily this included the prime stretch of Yellowbelly Track, 17km along the Goulburn River from McCoys Bridge to Yambuna Bridge.
As far as I am aware the map below is the current situation for the Yellowbelly Track routes between Shepparton and Echuca. The three yellow highlighted areas are the only parts of the Yellowbelly Track river tracks through Parks that are still closed.
Until the small northern section of LNGP is reopened, the best access point for riders at the north end is a 1.3 km section of Yambuna Bridge Road (marked purple on the map above).
Shepparton Regional Park (map to the left) is all open. This Park also includes river and bush track where the route goes close to the Goulburn River.
Access to this Park is important because it allows Yellowbelly Track riders to avoid the built-up urban areas of Shepparton and Mooroopna.
As a guide to the scale of the map – the ride distance from Shepparton to Toolamba along the red line is 21 km.
The only other closure anywhere is Kirwans Bridge, but there is a viable detour via Chinamans Bridge (see red line on the map to the right). As a guide to the map scale, the red line is 4.2 km long.
There is local community pressure to reopen Kirwans Bridge for car traffic, so this may open soon also.
Final Situation Report – updated 18 March 2023
See – Flood and Storm Effected Parks.
The Good News:
- A lot of ParksVic areas that were closed have suddenly re-opened in March. Perhaps there is pressure from commercial groups to have parks reopened by Easter, a peak camping time in Victoria. Recently opened areas include parts of Lower Goulburn National Park, the park areas east of Echuca along the Murray, the streamside reserves along the Campaspe such as Englishs Bridge reserve, Shepparton Regional Park, and Major Creek Camping Area.
- In North Central Victoria the Campaspe, Goulburn and Murray Rivers have all receded back to within their banks. River levels are actually lower than usual.
- Rainfall levels are back to normal levels and hot dry weather has assisted in drying soggy gravel and clay roads and tracks.
- Gravel routes to the west and south-west of the GABCY Network, including Rushworth Heathcote ironbark forest, are mostly back to normal. But please make your own enquiries before riding, particularly if intending to camp in public reserves.
- The roads on the most southern section of Yellowbelly Track from Tallarook to Murchison are all open as normal, although Kirwans Bridge is closed. The nearest alternate Goulburn River crossing is Chinamans Bridge on Vickers Road to the south of Nagambie town.
- Northwood Road Reserve camping area is open near Seymour.
The Bad News:
- The sections of Lower Goulburn National Park around Coomboona, and north of Yambuna Bridge Road are still closed.
- Even in bush areas that were flooded, but are now open, there is some ongoing risk of treefalls and branches dropping onto tracks.
- Advice from ParksVic is that they have concentrated on the main tracks and popular areas. Even in Park areas that are open, large sections of bush away from the tracks have not been assessed.
That’s all I’ve got. Please make your own enquiries and let me know if you discover anything else.
Reminder – there are other places to ride in the GABCY Network that are still in good condition.
See All The Rivers Flood – for more detail on recent floods.
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