Little River Gorge Walk Trail Hiking Australia
  • Length: 7.5km

  • Duration: 3hrs

  • Grade: 4

  • Style: Circuit

  • Start: Little River Picnic Area & Walk-in Campground

  • End: Little River Picnic Area & Walk-in Campground

  • Location: Brisbane Ranges National Park

  • Closest Town: Staughton Vale

  • Distance from CBD: 81km

  • State: VIC

  • Latitude: -37.816532

  • Longitude: 144.26837

Keep the Trail Access info current...

2WD Access
Gravel Road
Winding Road
Small Car Park
Public Toilets
Untreated Water
Camping Area
4WD Access

Select items to indicate conditions for access to the trail.

2WD Access

4WD Access

Public Transport

Bitumen Road

Gravel Road

Steep Road

Winding Road

Speed Bumps

Vehicle Ford

Entry Fee

Large Car Park

Small Car Park

Accessible Parking

Accessible Toilet

Public Toilets

Drinking Water

Untreated Water

Picnic Shelter

Picnic Table

BBQ Facilities

Campfire Pit

Camping Area

Keep the Trail Features current...

Gravel Path
Rough Trail
Undefined Trail
Exposed Ledges
Rock Scrambling
Steep Terrain
Bush Bashing
River Crossings
Untreated Water
Scenic Viewpoints

Brisbane Ranges National Park...

Select items to indicate features found along the trail.

Concrete Path

Timber Boardwalk

Gravel Path

Sandy Trail

Rough Trail

Undefined Trail

Prams & Strollers

Manual Wheelchair

Motorised Wheelchair

Bicycle Trail

Mountain Bike Trail

Historic Rail Trail

Dog Friendly

Urban Walk

Coast & Beach

Historic Lighthouse

Waterfalls & Lakes

Rainforest Walk

Goldfields & Mining

Heritage Walk

Aboriginal Art

Alpine Region

Alpine Huts

Exposed Ledges

Rock Scrambling

Steep Terrain

Bush Bashing

River Crossings

Scenic Viewpoints

Well Marked

Drinking Water

Untreated Water

Fishing Spots

Swimming Spots

Overnight Campsites

Trail Running

Horse Riding


The Little River Gorge Walk is a 7.5km, grade 4 circuit hike, located in the Brisbane Ranges National Park, Victoria. The hike should take approximately 3hrs to complete.

Hike Summary

The Brisbane Ranges offers a fantastic variety of hiking opportunities through a range of habitats. This lesser known section, just off The Burchell Trail, explores a reasonably short yet dramatic gorge, the Little River Gorge.

This hike is not to be confused with the Little River Gorge, which is Victoria's deepest gorge, just north of Buchan in Victoria.

Commencing at the Little River Picnic Area (which is a walk-in camping ground only), follow The Burchell trail south as it twists and turns along Reilly Creek. After approximately 1km of multiple, but relatively easy, creek crossings you will leave the creek briefly at the foot of a steep spur. It is at this point that the Burchell Trail climbs away from the creek to the south but your journey does not follow this trail. Ignoring the spur, drop back down into the creek again and follow it initially north, then west as it winds into the depths of the Little River Gorge.

For the next 3km you will enjoy countless creek crossing, rock hopping, spectacular scenery and above all, a real sense of isolation on this off-trail section of the circuit.

At around the 4km point (from the start) you will note that you start to leave the steep walls of the gorge behind as they make way for the lower foothills of the Brisbane ranges and the farmlands beyond. Locate a spur to your left. You will know it is the correct spur when you see a dry stone wall that starts at the foot of the spur and continues to the top of the plateau. If you simply follow the stone wall you will find the going relatively easy, though steep.

On reaching the top of the plateau you will easily locate Echidna Track, a rough management track. There is a gate and private property to your right so turn east and follow Echidna Track approximately 2.2km (of easy walking) back to McLeans Hwy. Don't be fooled by the name, this is no highway as you would have discovered on the rough and bumpy drive in.

Turn right at the road junction and walk south west for around 1km back to the Little River Picnic Area and your vehicles.

Little River Picnic Area and Walk-in Camping Ground

This picturesque campground is at the junction of the Little River and Rileys Creek and makes a great spot for overnight walk-in camping. Note, no vehicle camping is permitted.

  • Access: Access is by walkers only along the Burchell Trail which traverses the length of the park. The camping area is situated 10kms from Boar Gully and 29kms from Steiglitz on the eastern side of the Little River.
  • Bookings: Advanced bookings and payment are required.
  • Campsites: There are 2 unpowered campsites available. This campground is suitable for tents only.
  • Facilities: Non-flush toilets, wood barbecue, picnic table and seat are provided.
  • Campfire: Firewood collection is not permitted. Campers should bring a fuel stove for cooking.
  • Water: Tank water is available but it is not suitable for drinking - supply your own drinking water.

About the region

Little more than an hour's drive from Melbourne takes you to the state's richest wildflower habitat. Set in a low range of mountains dissected by rocky gullies, the unusual geology of Brisbane Ranges National Park has preserved plants that have long since vanished from the region, together with a correspondingly diverse bird population and the greatest density of koalas in Victoria.

Getting there

The park is 81km west of Melbourne via the Princes Highway. Turn onto the Ballan Road from Geelong or take the Western Freeway to Bacchus Marsh and follow the Geelong Road. It is best to set your GPS to the coordinates provided or simply search for the Little River Picnic Area in Google Maps.

Please be mindful that this area is a walk-in campsite only so do not disturb overnight hikers who may be enjoying the peace and tranquility.

GPX File

Total distance: 7504 m
Max elevation: 365 m
Min elevation: 203 m
Total climbing: 410 m
Total descent: -409 m
Download GPX File

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5 thoughts on “Little River Gorge Walk (7.5km)

  1. We took this trail in reverse, and were very thankful for it when we got to the steep downhill/stone fence section! It’s a pretty walk, but it’s very hard on this joints, as much of it is off trail, and zig zagging along a rocky riverbed – I definitely don’t recommend for people with dodgy ankles/knees/back. There’s some river sections that require a bit of rerouting and climbing to get around (though I imagine this is a little dependent on recent rainfall), but all in all, a nice walk.

  2. We did this trail on Sunday and it was lovely and lots of fun! We especially enjoyed the rock hopping down and across the creek. I highly recommend using the gpx file to follow as some points weren’t that clear due to overgrowth / lack of markers (once you are off the Burchell Trail) and also taking screenshots of the above trail notes helped (no reception in the gorge). Would definitely do again 🙂 Oh and we even saw an echidna on Echidna Track.

  3. Hi Darren, First of all, thank you very much for sharing this trail (and all other trails in your web site) . My friends and I are planning to try this trail on the weekend 😊. I do have a question about the dry stone wall that you mentioned in the above hike summary note – do we have to climb up that stone wall to get to the top of the plateau (as it seems that in one of the pictures a person is climbing on a stone wall)? or there is a track leading up to the top? Thanks!

    1. Thanks for your message about the hike. Just confirming yoh don’t really have to climb the dry stone wall. There are a few sections where you may choose to cross past it but it’s nothing challenging or that would damage the wall. The trail up there is not really a trail but if you just follow the wall, that will take to to the top.

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