Boasting diverse wildlife, Aboriginal rock art, and jaw-dropping views, Australia’s Grampians are one of western Victoria’s biggest draws. And now, with the first section of a massive new trail opening to the public, active adventurers will have even more reason to visit.
The Grampians Peaks Trail will be 160 km when completed, linking the sandstone outcrops around Mt. Zero in the north to the volcanic plains in the shadow of Mt. Abrupt to the south. A 13-day, 12-night walk, it will feature some 100 km of new trails and 60 km of existing trails, all created or upgraded with an eye toward sustainability and minimal environmental impact using existing pathways wherever possible and creating new infrastructure to avoid and minimize disturbances to the ecosystem. The full trail should be completed this year.
The aim, according to the project’s brochure, is to “provide an intimate and unforgettable experience of dramatic peaks, panoramic views and the majesty of this ancient and rugged landscape. The journey, rich in Aboriginal culture, will provide an insight into the Jardwadjali and Djab Wurrung people who have walked and lived in these ranges they have called Gariwerd for thousands of years."
The first stage, an area that’s long been popular for a walkabout, comprises a three-day, two-night trek from Halls Gap to Borough Huts, with realigned and improved trails as well as individual and small group-camping areas for overnights.
For their first stop in Bugiga, hikers can either stay at a small camp – 12 pads sleeping 24 people max – at the southern end of the Wonderland Range, or at another camp along Stony Creek Road that can accommodate up to 15. (Plans for a larger group camp nearby are already in the works.) For night two, they’ll trek to Borough Huts Campground, a larger site suitable for individual guests and large groups alike.
This is one of four long-distance treks being developed under Walk Victoria’s Icons banner, alongside the Great Ocean Walk, the Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing, and the Coastal Wilderness Walk in East Gippsland.
For more information on the sites, camp fees, and how to book, visit grampianspeakstrail.com.au.