Image courtesy of Melody Ayres-Griffiths, on flickr

If you’ve researched a trip to the Grampians you’ve no doubt seen pictures of The Pinnacle Lookout. Its spectacular rocky ledges jut out over Halls Gap, creating one of the region’s most iconic tourist attractions.

Unlike other lookouts in the Grampians – think Boroka Lookout or Reed Lookout – the only way to get to The Pinnacle is on foot. This serves to make those views over Halls Gap, Lake Bellfield and the surrounding mountain ranges all the more rewarding.

There are three routes to get to The Pinnacle – from Sundial Carpark, Wonderland Carpark, or Halls Gap township. Each of these requires a differing level of fitness and agility.

Sundial Carpark to The Pinnacle

The Pinnacle - Grampians National Park - Victoria - Australia

The quickest and least challenging route to The Pinnacle – and the one you’ll want to choose if you’re bringing small children along – is from Sundial Carpark. It may be easier than the other two routes but it’s nothing to be scoffed at. We did it with the kids when they were 5 and 7, and though they made the trip without too much whining, there were a few little falls and scraped knees along the way (to be fair, our children are a little accident-prone). The path is well signed and well-trodden, but it is very rocky and uneven in places.

The geological formations, the wildlife and the views along the way are incredible. Rock stacks beside the track make for some great little climbs for kids, keeping them entertained and not just walking to get somewhere. The only bummer is that you have to return via the same route, but I always surprise myself with how different everything looks from the different angle on a return trip.

Need to know

Length: 4.2 km
Time: 2 hrs
Grade: Medium / Grade 3 (according to the Australian Walking Track Grading System).
Style: Return
Access: The walk begins from Sundial Carpark. From Halls Gap (north of the shops), Take Mount Victory Road and turn left at Silverband Road (you will see a brown and white tourist sign pointing to Sundial Carpark). Take the next left onto Sundial Road (also signed) and you will find yourself at Sundial Carpark.

Wonderland Carpark to The Pinnacle

Grand Canyon (en route to The Pinnacle) - Grampians National Park - Victoria - Australia

Image courtesy of Jan Hecking, on flickr

If you’re looking for a little more challenge and an extra dash of adventure, but you still don’t have a lot of time, take on The Pinnacle from Wonderland Carpark. As if The Pinnacle itself isn’t amazing enough, this route takes in Grand Canyon, Cool Chamber, Bridal Veil Falls, and Silent Street along the way.

This walk requires a little more direction since it follows sections of other trails. After crossing the bridge into the Grand Canyon, climb the steps and turn left to ascend the rocky path past Bridal Veil Falls (best after rain) and through Silent Street to The Pinnacle.

Return on the Wonderland Forest Loop Track, which meets the track you ascended on just north of Bridal Veil Falls. Continue descending into the Grand Canyon, then take the track on your left which will lead you around the opposite side of Grand Canyon and back to the carpark.

Need to know

Length: 5.5 km
Time: 2.5 hrs
Grade: Medium – Hard / Grade 4 (according to the Australian Walking Track Grading System).
Style Circuit
Access: The walk begins from Wonderland Carpark. From Halls Gap (north of the shops), Take Mount Victory Road, turning left after about 2.5 km into Wonderland Road (signed as Wonderland Carpark) and continuing on for another 1 km to the carpark.

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Halls Gap to The Pinnacle

The Pinnacle - Grampians National Park - Victoria - Australia
Make a day of getting to The Pinnacle by hiking an 11.5-kilometre circuit from Halls Gap. This is one for the fitter and more experienced hikers visiting Grampians National Park. Naturally, it takes in even more of the Central Grampians than the other two routes and provides more opportunity to encounter the region’s wildlife.

Follow the Venus Baths trail, continuing along the signed trail to Splitters Falls and on to Wonderland Carpark. From here the path taken is the same as the Wonderland Carpark to The Pinnacle route above. When you return to Wonderland Carpark, head back to Halls Gap via the Splitters Falls and Venus Baths Trails.

Need to know

Length: 11.5 km
Time: 5 hrs
Grade: Medium – Hard / Grade 4 (according to the Australian Walking Track Grading System).
Style: Circuit
Access: Park in the main carpark at Halls Gap (across from the shops) and walk past the pool. The walk is signed from here.

How high is The Pinnacle?

The Pinnacle sits at 720 metres above sea level. Sounds high, right? Don’t fret. The vertical ascent from Sundial Carpark is only 110 metres, from Wonderland Carpark it’s 280 metres, and even from Halls Gap it’s only 400 metres.

When to hike The Pinnacle

Due to the popularity of The Pinnacle, it’s best to start hiking early in the morning to avoid crowds, especially in peak times like long weekends and school holidays.

Whichever of the three routes you choose The Pinnacle makes a good year-round hike. Autumn is a good time weather-wise, and Spring is the same except with bonus wildflowers. Obviously, summer and winter come with their dangers. Avoid the hottest part of the day in Summer (there’s not much shade up there) and beware of snakes, In winter you’re more likely to encounter rain and the slippery rocks that come with it.

Have you hiked The Pinnacle in the Grampians? Which route did you choose? Got any questions, comments, updates or corrections? Let us know by commenting below.

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