"You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you" - Isaiah 55:12

11 October 2015

Ryde Falls, Oxford Forest - 11 April 2009

The tramp in to Ryde Falls is a delightful, short walk on a good, well maintained track through beech forest typical of that found in the Canterbury foothills.

There are a couple of options to reach the falls, with tracks starting at both Coopers Creek and View Hill car parks, and it is the View Hill route described here.
From the car park, the Wharfedale Track is followed on a very easy gradient for about 15 minutes until reaching the signposted turn off to Ryde Falls. Continuing on, the track sidles around a bush face, with impressive fern growth alongside the track due to it being a south facing slope and therefore staying damper.
The track follows around the hillside, generally on an easy gradient with the usual rises and dips of the forest as it climbs over a couple of small spurs. As it crests one of these spurs, a track junction is met, with a left turn taking you down to Ryde Falls, and a right turn taking you out onto the link track that runs between the Coopers Creek and View Hill carparks.

From the junction, the track descends a little more steeply down to the stream, just downstream from Ryde Falls. It's not too difficult to keep your feet dry hopping across this stream.
Across the stream, there's a nice flat area that would be suitable for camping if you were looking for somewhere not too far to perhaps introduce children to bush camping - there's a stone campfire laid out and plenty of water nearby.
From here it's not far to the falls, a short, rougher track heads up alongside the stream on the true left, climbing above it to emerge at the top of the lower part of Ryde Falls, which come down in 3 cascades, with the lower one being the most attractive and accessible. It's not too difficult to scramble down the often greasy slope below the track to drop down into the stream at the foot of the falls - doing so grants you a better view of the falls, albeit with wet feet!

The easiest return option is the way you came in. Otherwise, to make a loop of the trip, you can take the other route at the track junction just above the falls stream out to the link track which then takes you back to the Wharfedale Track a short distance from the carpark.

Small stream just off the track to Ryde Falls, not far from the camping area mentioned

Ryde Falls

Access: Drive west out of Oxford onto Depot Rd. Turn right onto Woodstock Rd and follow it until the marked turnoff at Ingrams Rd, then left onto Limeworks Rd, which becomes Perhams Rd once past the limeworks. A final right turn takes you onto the road to the carpark, passing through 4 gates on farmland. Leave gates as found, and watch for stock on the road.

Time: View Hill carpark to Ryde Falls 1-2hrs 

Map: BW22 Oxford

Hut: None

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