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TV4 Mount Gisborne - Eruption Point

This information has been developed from the publications:

  • Sites of Geological and Geomorphological Significance in the Western Region of Melbourne (1986) by Neville Rosengren
  • Sites of Geological and Geomorphological Significance on the Coast of Port Phillip Bay (1988) by Neville Rosengren.
  • Sites of Geological and Geomorphological Significance in the Shire of Otway (1984) by Neville Rosengren.
Geological heritage sites, including sites of geomorphological interest and volcanic heritage sites, are under regular revision by the Geological Society of Australia, especially in the assessment of significance and values. Reference should be made to the most recent reports. See the Earth Science Heritage section of the Geological Society of Australia website (external link) for details of geological heritage reports, and a bibliography.

LocationToolern Vale - 865445. Former Shire of Gisborne. Summit and upper slopes of Mount Gisborne, 4 km south of Gisborne.


Mount Gisborne Road.


Some Crown land and some private land.

Site Description

Mount Gisborne (640 m) is the highest of the volcanic hills near Gisborne. There are two eruption points which gave rise to the most complex suite of Tertiary volcanic rocks known in Victoria, the mineralogy and chemistry of the early lavas differing substantially from that of the later flows. There is considerable outcrop on the upper slopes and summit of Mount Gisborne although this represents only a part of the volcanic complex.


State. Mount Gisborne erupted over a long period of time and had the most complex extrusive history of any Victorian volcano. At this site, there is outcrop of three lava types and several other sites eg - Breakneck Hill include lava from Mount Gisborne. The varieties of lava issued from this vent are not found together at any other single eruption point in the state.

The site has considerable potential for open space development and provides a commanding view to Mount Macedon, Sunbury, Melbourne, the You Yangs, Mts Bullengarook and Blackwood, and the Lerderderg Ranges. It is one of the best vantage points in the entire study area to observe regional geological and geomorphological variation.


Class 2. The lavas extended for several kilometres away from the vent and it is not possible to preserve the entire complex in a single site. Much of the outcrop is now enclosed in small residential subdivision holdings and is less accessible for field study. It is recommended that the area of this site be retained as public open space system and that private residences not be permitted. A walking trail with a robust directional marker at the summit indicating the features of the surrounding terrain would be appropriate.


Edwards, A.B. and Crawford, W. (1940). The Cainozoic Volcanic Rocks of the Gisborne District, Victoria.
Proc. R. soc. Vict. 52:281-311.

Related sites on VRO

  • Eruption Points of the Newer Volcanics (Rosengren 1994) - Mount Gisborne
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