Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Victoria specific bushwalking discussion.
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Victoria specific bushwalking discussion. Please avoid publishing details of access to sensitive areas with no tracks.

Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby bmak » Wed 20 Oct, 2021 10:29 pm

The photos above are from Werdug camp that looked complete when I took the photos a few weeks ago but the tracks were closed.

I’ve been checking it out due the build as it’s easy to get to.

The views from the 3 sleeping huts are spectacular and there is a communal fireplace and hut with lights and power.

The capacity for people is huge and I hope it never fills.

I do agree it’s probably out place but impressive.


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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby north-north-west » Thu 21 Oct, 2021 6:40 am

peregrinator wrote: Who loses?


The bush.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby CraigVIC » Thu 21 Oct, 2021 7:51 am

The inclusion of a fireplace seems odd. Are LTOs going to pack-in wood I wonder?
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Dexter » Thu 21 Oct, 2021 8:24 am

peregrinator wrote:Who pays? Who profits? Who loses? These are the key questions that arise in the long-term.


Spot on. I would have thought the tax payer paid/pays, and then the bushwalkers do again on top of that when they book a trip. Who profits? I'd be keen to know, and see a break down of the of income and spending. Surely this should be cost recovery.
Who loses? The general public who perhaps can't afford the rates. I definitely can, and you could argue most could. But out of principal I'm not sure I want to support this, and it's prohibitive for anyone who can't afford it. Enjoying our parks should be for everyone and not turned into a business.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Eremophila » Thu 21 Oct, 2021 10:08 am

So there is a maximum of 2 people per site, and it appears you can only pitch your tent on a platform.

If you are a noisy or restless sleeper, and prefer a little space, this means booking one site for each person - and consequently filling up the limited bookings.

GOW has a maximum of 3 people per site with generally more room. And costs around $17 per site per night.

I wonder if Parks will be keeping the water tanks topped up? With the expected crowds, especially it the trail opens in December, water supplies won't last long. There will be plenty of folks who don't realise they need to conserve water and not wash their hands under a running tap etc.

I'm keen to have a look, probably autumn next year.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby CraigVIC » Thu 21 Oct, 2021 11:45 am

If it's anything like Bugiga then it is flat out impossible to obtain any info from Brambuk about tank levels and if you have doubts then the Halls Gap guiding service does water drops. Quite different to the Prom and GOW who both provide water info.

When I was at Bugiga I've never seen so much water wasted before or since, but one third of the sites were occupied by car based campers.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Eremophila » Thu 21 Oct, 2021 1:09 pm

I've never come across anyone at Brambuk who knows the first thing about bushwalking or camping. They will just parrot whatever's in the brochure/printout. (Much like the COVID hotline :roll: )

Hopefully with the opening of this trail that may change, although their visitor interaction will be geared towards a different market. I imagine it will just be the usual disclaimer "do not rely on the water tanks and do not drink water from the tanks".

Interesting, although understandable, that they are not providing loo paper. GOW always has oodles !

Thanks for the info re water drops.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby jimjim » Sun 24 Oct, 2021 2:55 pm

At the Southern end the track up Signal peak is open from the Mt Abrupt carpark. Already quite popular and you are no longer guaranteed to have this lonesome peak to yourself. The carparks at Abrupt and Sturgeon have been very full on weekends recently.
The camp-site is ages off being finished. Dunkeld will have a great view of the toilet block.....
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby ggorgeman » Mon 25 Oct, 2021 7:36 am

Did a weekend overnighter last Fri/Sat in the Northern Grampians, including some of the new sections of GPT. Will post a report separately asap.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Eremophila » Mon 25 Oct, 2021 10:24 am

ggorgeman wrote:Did a weekend overnighter last Fri/Sat in the Northern Grampians, including some of the new sections of GPT. Will post a report separately asap.


Good timing - I imagine it will be crazy busy next weekend.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby ggorgeman » Mon 25 Oct, 2021 10:37 am

Eremophila wrote:
ggorgeman wrote:Did a weekend overnighter last Fri/Sat in the Northern Grampians, including some of the new sections of GPT. Will post a report separately asap.


Good timing - I imagine it will be crazy busy next weekend.


100%.... was very quiet up there, only saw a couple of other walkers for the entire loop. For our overnight stay at Coppermine there were 2 drive-ins. A couple of cars at Mt Zero midday Sat when we returned. Glad to have it pretty much to ourselves.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby nezumi » Mon 25 Oct, 2021 8:11 pm

Dexter wrote:
peregrinator wrote:Who pays? Who profits? Who loses? These are the key questions that arise in the long-term.


Spot on. I would have thought the tax payer paid/pays, and then the bushwalkers do again on top of that when they book a trip. Who profits? I'd be keen to know, and see a break down of the of income and spending. Surely this should be cost recovery.
Who loses? The general public who perhaps can't afford the rates. I definitely can, and you could argue most could. But out of principal I'm not sure I want to support this, and it's prohibitive for anyone who can't afford it. Enjoying our parks should be for everyone and not turned into a business.


Much the same for me. For the same reason I would favour doing the "Free Capes Track over the paid one.

Eremophila wrote:So there is a maximum of 2 people per site, and it appears you can only pitch your tent on a platform.


And if you are a hammock camper, well then... have fun?
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Gunner55 » Tue 26 Oct, 2021 5:40 pm

I have it on good authority bookings will open before December. To do the entire walk you/we will be paying about $600 as you are obliged to use a tent pad. The tent pad is for up to two people, so if solo it's the 600 and if as a couple it will be half that cost per person, obviously. The plan is to disallow off-track camping in the NP. Bookings will be compulsory. ATM a walker is obliged to stop one night at every designated campsite, which I have flagged with a Parks rep was ludicrous and will aggravate some, as why can't you walk two sections in a day if you see fit? Regardless, whatever itinerary you book, you'll be expected to stick to it. Don't you dare live in the moment!
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby spacemandave » Tue 26 Oct, 2021 8:32 pm

Gunner55 wrote:The tent pad is for up to two people, so if solo it's the 600 and if as a couple it will be half that cost per person


And if walking as a group of three, say a mum dad and kid or three friends, sharing a tent? Maybe such parties are not accepted, or asked to cough up $1200 for two platforms! I wonder how strictly all these rules will be enforced? Maybe zealously, and the commodification of parks and walking would continue down its elitist neo-liberal path.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Baeng72 » Tue 26 Oct, 2021 9:30 pm

Gunner55 wrote:I have it on good authority bookings will open before December. To do the entire walk you/we will be paying about $600 as you are obliged to use a tent pad. The tent pad is for up to two people, so if solo it's the 600 and if as a couple it will be half that cost per person, obviously. The plan is to disallow off-track camping in the NP. Bookings will be compulsory. ATM a walker is obliged to stop one night at every designated campsite, which I have flagged with a Parks rep was ludicrous and will aggravate some, as why can't you walk two sections in a day if you see fit? Regardless, whatever itinerary you book, you'll be expected to stick to it. Don't you dare live in the moment!

This is typical neo-liberal *&%$#! if true! Privatising wealth, making the public underwrite the bill.
The Overland, in all it's bucket-list glory, allows you to stay in huts without booking, and as required, camp at places like Frog Flats, or anywhere really.
If you like, walk from Ronny Creek to New Pelion in a day (legs permitting).
I like the idea that on the GPT, that people who aren't into roughing it, can have a patch to camp in, even if it chafes that they only carry day packs and get gourmet *&%$#! at the end of the day.
But paying for that (taxes used for construction/maintenance), and then being denied rights or access we currently have so some operator can charge through the nose. Stinks. I might need a chill pill.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby EGM » Tue 26 Oct, 2021 10:01 pm

I agree baeng. The overland model is definitely preferable over the 2/3 capes.

And whats the deal with the enforcement of booking all camps and not letting people go faster or maybe slower. It's ludicrous to make a first time multi day walker do the same daily distance as an experienced walker, not to mention people may want to walk it at different speeds. I assume this rule also outlaws shorter trips using the camps.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Baeng72 » Tue 26 Oct, 2021 10:06 pm

EGM wrote:I agree baeng. The overland model is definitely preferable over the 2/3 capes.

And whats the deal with the enforcement of booking all camps and not letting people go faster or maybe slower. It's ludicrous to make a first time multi day walker do the same daily distance as an experienced walker, not to mention people may want to walk it at different speeds. I assume this rule also outlaws shorter trips using the camps.

That's so annoying. Just have a fee, let people walk at their own pace, camp where it's reasonable, and let nut-jobs camp wherever they want if their not using GPT facilities (apart from the crapper, that facility I want to use if my meager tax paying dollars were involved).
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Dexter » Tue 26 Oct, 2021 10:27 pm

What a load of rubbish. If this is true, it's disgraceful. What's the fine for not paying and doing the walk anyway? Less than the $600?

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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby CraigVIC » Wed 27 Oct, 2021 8:03 am

EGM wrote:I agree baeng. The overland model is definitely preferable over the 2/3 capes.

And whats the deal with the enforcement of booking all camps and not letting people go faster or maybe slower. It's ludicrous to make a first time multi day walker do the same daily distance as an experienced walker, not to mention people may want to walk it at different speeds. I assume this rule also outlaws shorter trips using the camps.


Within the broader walk there are a number of two night walks (that must be booked as two consecutive nights) and I think there will be some overnight walks including Bugiga but that is less clear.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Dexter » Wed 27 Oct, 2021 8:31 am

I've seen loads of similar concerns throughout Tasmania. And I'm sure this isn't the first situation like this or similar. I'm guessing it's best not to jump the gun and wait till there's an official word on pricing and what is, and isn't allowed in the national park. But is there somewhere where these concerns can be voiced? Any idea what the best process is for the public having their say? I sent an email of concern a couple of weeks ago, but really have had no word back apart from 'We will pass this on to the GPT team' as a response. I'm not usually one to write angry letters, or complain about most things... but this just irks me.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Baeng72 » Fri 29 Oct, 2021 10:38 am

I just got an email from Parks saying the GPT is open for booking and the track will be open from 13th of Nov.
Not cheap!
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby Out_Walking » Fri 29 Oct, 2021 10:46 am

I saw the figure by B72 of $429 for the full hike. I looked at dates outside summer next year and got the figure of $524.70 for 12 nights. Appears it's subject to price increases outside the standard brutally expensive price.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby nofrills » Fri 29 Oct, 2021 1:17 pm

As somebody who has been waiting to return home from abroad for three years and reconnect with country by camping outside and experiencing my homeland landscapes on foot, I was excited to see the email from Parks Vic about the new trail. I have to admit, it didn't take me long to feel annoyed and frustrated with the steep price tag - even $25 p/ day I think would be reasonable - and probably more-so disappointed with the lack of flexibility in hiking the trail at your own pace. Suffice to say, these two things will mean I am much less likely to book this in.

I don't believe decisions about management of the park would have been taken lightly though - as a trail and project this large usually has to get several approvals and compliant with various plans including agreements with local city stakeholders, including the traditional owners. I also think while this *might* increase foot traffic - at least it will increase accessibility for those who might not otherwise feel inclined to enjoy the outdoors in this way, and hopefully divert it away from off-trail to protect the environment. Wishful thinking. :)
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby jimjim » Sat 30 Oct, 2021 9:15 am

nofrills wrote:..... at least it will increase accessibility for those who might not otherwise feel inclined to enjoy the outdoors in this way, and hopefully divert it away from off-trail to protect the environment. Wishful thinking. :)


This track is being constructed to footpath standard. It is not aimed at "bushwalkers" and it will certainly increase accessibility; for better or worse....

Off trail walking in the Grampians is a niche activity at best. Acacia prickleensis and Hakea spikeoides see to that. Those few who go off track won't stop so they can camp with the school groups and bucket listers....
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby nofrills » Mon 01 Nov, 2021 3:36 am

jimjim wrote:
nofrills wrote:..... at least it will increase accessibility for those who might not otherwise feel inclined to enjoy the outdoors in this way, and hopefully divert it away from off-trail to protect the environment. Wishful thinking. :)


This track is being constructed to footpath standard. It is not aimed at "bushwalkers" and it will certainly increase accessibility; for better or worse....

Off trail walking in the Grampians is a niche activity at best. Acacia prickleensis and Hakea spikeoides see to that. Those few who go off track won't stop so they can camp with the school groups and bucket listers....


My point is people enjoying the outdoors through hiking and bushwalking has been increasing pre-covid (Wild, instagram, etc.) and now maybe because of it. Putting infrastructure in place that supports sustainable usage is necessary as a long term step to maintaining and protecting the park.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby north-north-west » Mon 01 Nov, 2021 5:14 am

nofrills wrote:My point is people enjoying the outdoors through hiking and bushwalking has been increasing pre-covid (Wild, instagram, etc.) and now maybe because of it. Putting infrastructure in place that supports sustainable usage is necessary as a long term step to maintaining and protecting the park.


The GPT has nothing to do with sustainable usage and Covid. It's about monetiisatiion of the park. The project was underway for years before the pandemic.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby ggorgeman » Mon 01 Nov, 2021 8:33 am

jimjim wrote:
nofrills wrote:..... at least it will increase accessibility for those who might not otherwise feel inclined to enjoy the outdoors in this way, and hopefully divert it away from off-trail to protect the environment. Wishful thinking. :)


This track is being constructed to footpath standard. It is not aimed at "bushwalkers" and it will certainly increase accessibility; for better or worse....

Off trail walking in the Grampians is a niche activity at best. Acacia prickleensis and Hakea spikeoides see to that. Those few who go off track won't stop so they can camp with the school groups and bucket listers....



There are certainly pro's and con's re the GPT; my main gripe is that some of the really stunning trails/locations are being 'monopolised' by the GPT. But I must correct JimJim in that the sections I've walked on as part of generally being in the area aren't "to footpath standard". From my observations re Mt Stapylton area and Mt Difficult area the GPT uses existing trails but certainly some additional rock-steps added. JimJim may have been in areas that I've not so his experience may be different.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby CraigVIC » Mon 01 Nov, 2021 10:31 am

It's easy to slip into hyperbole talking about something so frustrating I guess, but there certainly are sections built to a footpath standard, eg the descent to Jimmy creek.

The broader point is if you have a look through the master plan it is peppered with references to appealing to a wide range of user groups including *people who do not bushwalk* The vision is they will complete the walk using one guiding service or another making them the 'high yield tourist' The intention is that an inexperienced walker should be able to complete the whole thing (carrying only a daypack).

Even if sections remain that are difficult they may be removed over time. Parks produce an official map for the GOW. Each edition has removed difficult alternates, eg around Franklin which is far superior to the cliff walk.
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby nofrills » Mon 01 Nov, 2021 12:45 pm

north-north-west wrote:
nofrills wrote:My point is people enjoying the outdoors through hiking and bushwalking has been increasing pre-covid (Wild, instagram, etc.) and now maybe because of it. Putting infrastructure in place that supports sustainable usage is necessary as a long term step to maintaining and protecting the park.


The GPT has nothing to do with sustainable usage and Covid. It's about monetiisatiion of the park. The project was underway for years before the pandemic.


Well, creating trails and managing public lands are what parks organisations do...
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Re: Grampians Peaks Trail - Open??

Postby north-north-west » Mon 01 Nov, 2021 4:06 pm

nofrills wrote:
north-north-west wrote:
nofrills wrote:My point is people enjoying the outdoors through hiking and bushwalking has been increasing pre-covid (Wild, instagram, etc.) and now maybe because of it. Putting infrastructure in place that supports sustainable usage is necessary as a long term step to maintaining and protecting the park.


The GPT has nothing to do with sustainable usage and Covid. It's about monetiisatiion of the park. The project was underway for years before the pandemic.


Well, creating trails and managing public lands are what parks organisations do...


Managing the land is part of what they're supposed to do. But their primary focus should be protection of the environment, while construction of these sorts of tracks and associated infrastructure is about monetary return.
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