• Length: 21.4km

  • Duration: 9-10hrs

  • Grade: 4

  • Style: Circuit

  • Start: Mountain Creek Camping Area

  • End: Mountain Creek Camping Area

  • Location: Alpine National Park

  • Closest Town: Tawonga

  • Distance from CBD: 364km

  • State: VIC

  • Latitude: -36.70056732

  • Longitude: 147.2514706

Keep the Trail Access info current...

2WD Access
Drinking Water
Public Toilets
Bitumen Road
Camping Area
Picnic Table
Large Car Park

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...

Overnight Campsites
Gravel Path
Alpine Huts
Alpine Region
Well Marked
Scenic Viewpoints
Rough Trail
Exposed Ledges
Untreated Water

Alpine 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


Mount Bogong - Staircase Spur is a 21.4km, grade 4 circuit hike, located in Alpine National Park, Victoria. The hike should take approximately 9-10hrs to complete.

Hike Summary

At 1986 metres high, Mount Bogong is Victoria's tallest mountain, dwarfing all its rivals. The Mount Bogong - Staircase Spur Trail is the direct route up, beginning at the Mountain Creek Picnic Area and ending at the summit of Mount Bogong.

The track to the summit begins at the Mountain Creek Picnic Area and follows a vehicle track to the foot of the Staircase Spur, where the ascent begins through a forest of Peppermint Gums. Bivouac Hut, about halfway along the climb, offersa welcome resting place before the track passes through Snow Gums and out onto the steep rocky ridge leading to the summit plateau.

The exposed treeless plain of the summit offers little shelter in poor weather. Strong winds, fog, freezing temperatures, rain and snow are all common at this altitude. Navigation can be extremely difficult in these conditions so we will turn back at the tree line if conditions are poor or deteriorating.

From the summit, steeply descend via Eskdale Spur, via Michell Hut to Camp Creek then follow the Mountain Creek and Tree Fern Tracks back to Mountain Creek. The alternative option is to return via the staircase which makes this approximately a 16km return hike.

This is a challenging hike that should not be underestimated. During the winter months you should consider this a Grade 5 hike.

Overnight Camping

If you intend on making this an overnight hike, camping is available outside the following huts.

  • Bivouac Hut. Staircase Spur, approximately 6km from the trail head and 3km from the summit. This is a small hut with pit toilet but no water tank.
  • Cleve Cole Memorial Hut, approximately 4km south of the summit (this will add to your overall hike length as a return trip is required). This is a small hut with pit toilet and water tank.
  • Michhelle Hut, approximately 2km from the summit down Eskdale Spur. This is a small hut with pit toilet and water tank.

Note: Huts in alpine areas are intended for emergency use only and you should not plan to sleep in them or use the emergency firewood.

Be Prepared

This hike requires that you have a sufficient level of equipment (in good working order), fitness and self-reliance.

About the region

The Alpine National Park is a national park located in the Central Highlands and Alpine regions of Victoria, Australia. The 646,000-hectare national park is located northeast of Melbourne. It is the largest National Park in Victoria, and covers much of the higher areas of the Great Dividing Range in Victoria, including Victoria's highest point, Mount Bogong at 1,986 metres and the associated subalpine woodland and grassland of the Bogong High Plains. The park's north-eastern boundary is along the border with New South Wales, where it abuts the Kosciuszko National Park.

Getting there

The hike starts and ends at Mountain Creek Camping Area. From Melbourne, drive to the small town of Tawonga (4km north of Mount Beauty). From Towonga, Mountain Creek Roads heads east for 10.5km to the camping area. There are pleasant campsites and a pit toilet here.

GPX File

Total distance: 21402 m
Max elevation: 1975 m
Min elevation: 595 m
Total climbing: 1541 m
Total descent: -1542 m
Download GPX File

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24 thoughts on “Mount Bogong – Staircase Spur (21.4km)

    1. Hi Sam,
      I am not a experience hiker but I am fit. Just want some advice of preparing for the climb. I do have a camel pack, torch, fit aid kit, good hiking shoes, and food. What would be the best time to go sun rise? I believe it is 19km, however is it cold up there? Do we need to pack for warm cloths up on the top? We are planning to go first week of Jan 2017

    2. Thanks for your questions. All of he gear you mention sounds suitable. As this is an alpine hike you should always take clothing that is suitable for cold weather and even snow (yes, even in summer). Less likely to snow in Victoria in summer but it is better to be prepared for he worst. As it is a 19k hike I would suggest starting no later than 9am in the summer months. Earlier if you can do that you are walking in the cooler air.

  1. My friends and I are keen to do this hike in a couple weeks.
    Just wanting to clarify, is it 19km one way? or 19km up and back?

    1. Hi Emily. If you refer to the Map and elevation profile on this hike you will not that it is a circuit, not a return hike. The 19.3km is for the total circuit.

  2. Did this hike at the start of May 18 – awesome hike
    All went well, fantastic sunny day until about 4pm, close to the top got hit with high wind, whiteout – no visibility.
    Missed the turnoff to Michell hut and ended up at the Cleve Cole Hut where we set up camp for the night.
    There were a few groups of day walkers unprepared and got stuck on the mountain with no gear.
    Tips: be prepared for all conditions and know where options are for refuge in the area

    1. Could not agree more about being prepared. It is nothing but foolish to head out without the necessary gear, particularly in an environment like this. People have died and will continue to if we all don’t take responsibility for ourselves.

  3. Hi Darren/or Anyone with info

    it says it’s a 21.4 Hike but everyone in the comments is saying 19.3, has that been updated or is that just a shorter trail? Because I’m interested in the 19.3 to be honest.

    Also when it comes to gear, I know the obvious like proper clothing and water+Food. what else should I take, we are a group of around 13 Men/Boys.

    your response will be much appreciated 🙂

    Thanks Omar

    1. Hi Omar. The length I recorded was on my GPS. Devices can produce different results and there is also the possibility that I walked a bit further looking at view points and checking on the group. You could split the difference and say it’s around 20km. If you happen to take a recording yourself I’d be happy to update the length.

      Re gear. All depends on when you are going. If you are heading up before mid-November there will be plenty of snow and ice around so you will need Snow shoes, ice axe and crampons for each member of your party. Some form of emergency shelter is also advisable in case you get caught due to weather or tough conditions.

  4. I just did this yesterday. From Mountain Creek campground to the staircase and down via Eskdale spur. I’ve done some difficult hikes and this one surprised me a little. It was quite some work. Well worth it, but a hard day out. Quite cold and windy at the top. For parts of the descent it was quite slow progress, checking your footing and pole placement is pretty critical. Great day out.

  5. Hey folks, wondering if anyone can give me some advice regarding hiking in the alpine regions. A mate and I are looking at doing this hike and Feathertop this summer. But we are wondering when does the snow melt reach a point that snow/ice equipment isn’t necessary?

    Appreciate any information you can send our way.


    1. Hi Michael. Sounds awesome, both are great areas to hike in. Typically I would wait until early November to ensure that most of the snow has gone. A lot of roads are closed in the alpine area until after the Melbourne Cup which is 5 November in 2019 which can make access to some areas impossible. Feathertop and Bogong aren’t typically impacted by road closures but it worth checking with Mansfield Police or Parks Vic. If heading to Feathertop you may want to check when Hotham Resort officially close or you may be up for vehicle access costs. Hope this helps. Cheers, Darren

  6. The staircase trail is a bit rougher than I remembered it. No tourists for last 18 months; it has a lot of loose stones and rocks along the path and although big tree trunks have been removed there were a few unexpected short stumps and lots of stones along the way especially between the Bivouwac hut and the tree line. It was very windy and cold along the top and there was still some melting snow on 28.11.21.
    A very important note coming back down the staircase: Once you have descended the staircase and are coming along the mountain creek path there are 4 bridges along the creek before you arrive at the camp ground.
    After tossing the 3rd bridge the path to cross to final bridge is off to the left and NOT SIGNPOSTED . Do not follow the 4 wheel drive keep to the left and you will see the path to cross the final bridge ( unless you want to cross the creek by foot.)

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