Information for walkers and hikers

INFORMATION FOR HIKERS

While many parts of The Grand Strzelecki Track are graded easy to medium, other parts are challenging and require a degree of fitness and experience. Overall, the Track is Class 4 under the Australian Standard which means that some parts are narrow foot track with minimal infrastructure provided, requiring self-sufficiency, navigation skills (although it is generally well marked) and responsibility for your own safety. Please read the Track Protocols and study the map notes before commencing your walk and plan accordingly. Billys Creek and Macks Creek are unsuitable for mountain bike use.

There are four possible entry points to start your walk: The west section at Morwell National Park (Junction Road car park), Balook (Tarra Bulga National Park Visitors Centre car park), Tarra Valley Picnic Area car park and Macks Creek Hall.

The atmospheric climate is very cold in winter with possible snow, and receives an average rainfall of 1700mm each year. Summer can still be hot at times. There are creek crossings on some tracks. Be prepared with warm and extra clothing. Toilet paper and small shovel. Plastic bag for carry out rubbish. Bushmans Insect Repellent against ticks, leeches, marchflies and mosquitoes. Also consider gaiters in the warmer months against snake bites and flowering thistle.

 

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THE TRACKS

1. Mack’s Creek Loop (2 days) Balook to Balook

Day 1 from Balook to Macks Creek Hall Rest Area via Forest Track, Wild Cherry Track and Roberts Road. 13km. 5 hours

Day 2 from Macks Creek Hall Rest Area to Balook via Old Coach Road. 12.1km. 4 hours.

Camping suggestion: Macks Creek Hall Rest Area or Bird Road Bridge Rest Area.

2. Tarra Valley Loop (1 day) – Balook to Balook via Forest Track, Diaper Track to Cyathea Falls and Tarra Falls, Great Forest Walk, Butlers Track, Duncans Track, Mountain Hickory Track, Goombala Road and Grand Ridge Road. 22.8km. 8 hours.

Camping suggestion: Pattison Rest Area or Tarra Valley Caravan park.

3. Mount Tassie Loop (1 day) – Balook to Balook via Link Track, Drysdale Road, West Face, Pine Trail Track and Mount Tassie and Duffs Sawmill Heritage Trail. 18.3km. 6.5 hours.

Camping suggestion: Pattison Rest Area, Morningside Rest Area or Forget-Me-Not Falls.

4. Park to Park (2 days) Morwell NP to Tarra Bulga NP

Day 1 from Morwell NP to Jumbuk Rest Area via Junction Road Car Park and Billys Creek. 13.1km. 7+ hours. 

Day 2 from Jumbuk Rest Area to Tarra Bulga NP via Road 31, Road 57, Mountain Hickory Track, Goombala Road and Grand Ridge Road. 13.8km. 4.5 hours.

This is not a loop track and requires a car shuffle or car storage at Mountain-Top Experience in Morwell.

Camping suggestion: Jumbuk Rest Area.

 

A must do from the Tarra Bulga NP Visitor Centre is the walk to Corrigans Suspension Bridge (20 minutes), then from the bridge both Ferngully Walk rainforest (15 minutes) and Scenic Track (30 minutes) back to the Tarra Bulga NP Visitor Centre. Another short loop walk from the Tarra Bulga NP Visitor Centre is the Forest Walk (1 hour 20 minutes).

 

IMPORTANT CHANGE TO THE TARRA VALLEY LOOP DUE TO FORESTRY HARVESTING MONDAY 4TH – 18TH OF JANUARY 2021.

The Diaper Track and Tarra Valley Road Link Track sections of the Tarra Valley Loop will be closed. Hikers are to use Tarra Valley Road between the Great Forest Walk and Mountain Hickory Track in both clockwise and anti-clockwise directions. Be aware of cars travelling in both directions as it is a narrow winding road. This means:

Tarra Valley Loop (1 Day) from the Tarra Bulga NP Visitor Centre via Goombala Road, Mountain Hickory Track and Tarra Valley Road to Cyathea Falls and Tarra Falls, then the Great Forest Walk, Butlers Track, Duncans Track, Mountain Hickory Track and Goombala Road back to the Tarra Bulga NP Visitor Centre and drive 2.5km to camp at Pattison’s Rest Area approx. 20km / 6-7 hours.

 

CARING FOR OUR ENVIRONMENT

The three loop tracks and park-park track enter parts of Tarra Bulga and Morwell National Parks, which both have a Parks Victoria policy not permitting cats, dogs, horses, firearms, campfires or generators within the park. Use of drones requires a Parks Victoria permit. Campfires are also not permitted at the free campsites or along The Track.

 

FREE AND PAID CAMPING AND ACCOMMODATION

Tracks, rest areas and accommodation are open and subject to social distancing.

 

Camping is not encouraged at the Tarra Bulga National Park Visitor Centre in Balook, however there is access to public toilets and non-potable drinkable water (please sterilise water for drinking).

 

FREE CAMPING

REST AREAS AT JUMBUK, PATTISON, MORNINGSIDE, FORGET-ME-NOT FALLS, MACKS CREEK HALL CARPARK AND BIRD ROAD BRIDGE.

FREE CAMPSITES DO NOT REQUIRE BOOKING AND ARE AVAILABLE ON A FIRST IN BASIS.

CAMPING IS ALSO PERMITTED ON ANY TRACK SECTIONS OUTSIDE OF THE NATIONAL PARK BOUNDARIES.

 

Jumbuk Rest Area

 

Pattison Rest Area

 

Jumbuk Rest Area along the ‘Park to Park’ walk and Pattison Rest Area in Balook can be used as day or overnight stops with no fee. They have a toilet, shelter, picnic table and non-potable drinking water (please sterilise water for drinking). Macks Creek Hall Carpark Rest Area, Bird Road Bridge Rest Area have no facilities. Morningside Rest Area and Forget-Me-Not Falls Rest Area have a picnic table. These rest areas are designed for hikers with swags or small tents only, with no access for campervans, caravans or motorhomes.

 

PAID CAMPING AND ACCOMMODATION

PAID CAMPSITES AND CABINS REQUIRE BOOKING AND ARE AVAILABLE ON A FIRST IN BASIS.

 

TARRA VALLEY CAMPING AND CABIN ACCOMMODATION.

Camping and cabin accommodation is available at the Tarra Valley Caravan Park ‘Fernholme’ in Tarra Valley with powered and unpowered tents sites and cabins with access to camp kitchen, laundry, showers, toilets, drinking water and firewood.

Phone +61 3 5186 1283 www.tarra-valley.com.au

 

MACKS CREEK CABIN ACCOMMODATION.

Cabin accommodation is available at Glenwood Farm Holiday Cottage (Bed and Breakfast) located off Bulga Park Road along the Macks Creek Track Loop.

Phone (Julie) 0438 952 602 or (Steve) 0428 825 900 www.glenwoodfarm.com.au

 

MACKS CREEK HALL ACCOMMODATION.

Room accommodation is available at Macks Creek Hall for group hire at $100 per night with access to toilets, water and cooking facilities. Or camp outside for free with no facilities.

NOTE: IN THE EVENT THE HALL IS BOOKED FOR A FUNCTION, PLEASE CAMP AT BIRD ROAD BRIDGE REST AREA. IF YOU ARE UNSURE, PHONE JENNY ON 5186 1340.

Phone Jenny  +61 3 5186 1340 mackscreekhall@gmail.com

 

Alternatively, accommodation is available in the surrounding towns of Traralgon, Morwell, Yarram and Churchill, all of which are located within an hour of The Grand Strzelecki Track.

 

ACCESS AND TRANSPORT

The ‘Park to Park’ section starts at Junction Road, Jeeralang Junction, about 5 km south of Churchill. Churchill is approximately 2 hours drive east of Melbourne via the Princes Freeway (watch for the Churchill and Federation University exit). If travelling by train on V/Line from Melbourne or Orbost, there is Latrobe Valley Bus Service to Churchill from Morwell Railway Station. Alternatively, a car hire can be made at Traralgon through Budget, Hertz and Avis Car Rentals.

At the eastern end of the Track, the three loop walks radiate from the township of Balook, where the Tarra Bulga National Park Visitor Centre is located. This network can also be accessed from Tarra Valley accommodation area, Tarra Valley Picnic Area within the Tarra Bulga National Park or Macks Creek Hall and Bird Road Bridge. Public parking is available at all of these places except the Tarra Valley accommodation area (unless you are a patron).

If travelling to Balook via the Princess Highway, continue until the exit sign to Yarram / Loy Yang, then at the traffic light just before Loy Yang Power Station, turn right following the brown tourist signs to Tarra Bulga National Park and Balook. Balook is 2.5 hours east of Melbourne via the Princes Highway or 3 hours via the South Gippsland Highway to Yarram. From Yarram, follow the signs north through Tarra Valley to Balook. The Traralgon-Balook Road from Loy Yang and the Tarra Valley Road from Yarram are bitumen, other roads are gravel. Macks Creek Hall is 15 minutes north of Yarram with gravel for the last 2 km, and a further 12km gravel to Balook.

There is no train service to Yarram but V/line run regular coach services from Melbourne to Yarram. There is also a bus service between Traralgon Railway Station and Yarram.

Transport storage, mini bus tours and transport (minimum 28 seats) is available through Mountain-Top Experience. Phone +61 3 5134 6876 www.mountaintopexperience.com

 

 

 

BROCHURE DOWNLOAD

Download Inspired by Gippsland’s brochure about the Tarra Bulga National Park and the historical township of Balook. Also includes information about The Grand Strzelecki Track, Duff Sawmill Heritage Trail, Tarra Valley and more.

Tarra Bulga NP and Balook Brochure

 

 

THERE IS A NO WOOD FIRE POLICY ON THE GRAND STRZELECKI TRACK

Persons sighted or caught lighting a campfire will be reported and may face arson offences.