The Coliban Main Channel was constructed in the late 1860s. It is an open gravity channel between Malmsbury and Bendigo and is approximately 70 kilometres long. The channel transfers water from the Malmsbury Reservoir to the Bendigo and Castlemaine Water Treatment Plants, which supply 14 towns in the region, and it also supplies irrigation water to rural water customers of Coliban Water. The channel consists of concrete sections and earthen or rock sections. The concrete sections are around 60 to 80 years old. (taken from Coliban Water website).
The construction of this remarkable feat of engineering is told in a Coliban Water history slide show. The slide show documents the construction of rail and water schemes in central Victoria, driven by the discovery of rich goldfields. The Coliban Main Channel story begins at slide 42 by introducing its designer, Irish civil engineer Joseph Brady.
Today there are walking tracks alongside most of the Channel. North of Mount Alexander the Goldfields Track follows the Channel to Bendigo. In the Taradale district the south end of the walking track begins at the start of the open channel north of the siphon and continues to Elphinstone, north of Taradale, passing under several roads on the way. These roads provide access to the Channel.