Australian Alps Walking Track: Tharwa to Thredbo

Introduction

We (Tom and Maddie) are very excited to announce that we are launching our own tour guiding company. When we first started this website, we wrote that, “We created The Adventure Gene to share our knowledge and experience, and hopefully convince people that their outdoor aspirations are more realistic than they think” (see About Us). After COVID-19, and our experiences working in the guiding industry, we believe there is an interest in authentic outdoor experiences that extend beyond the well trodden paths of traditional walking holidays.

Using our knowledge and expertise gained from over 30,000km of hiking and guiding, our goal is to combine modern hiking techniques with cutting-edge gear to facilitate adventures in new and exciting locations.

We are currently taking expressions of interest for guided hiking tours along the Australian Alps Walking Track (AAWT). Launching in late 2024, we will be the first guiding company to offer a hiking tour from Tharwa to Thredbo along the AAWT (with other parts of the track to come later). Read on to find out more about the AAWT and specific tour details.

Explore the Australian Alps Walking Track

Taken from our AAWT Track Guide for individual hikers:

The Australian Alps Walking Track (AAWT) is a remote 680km walk between Tharwa (ACT) to Walhalla (VIC). It traverses large sections of the nicest high country on mainland Australia, including the highest point in Australia, Mount Kosciuszko. Passing through terrain that is inaccessible by vehicle, the track offers the potential to explore some of the most remote and rugged areas within Victoria, NSW, and the ACT. Although the popularity of the AAWT is increasing, the remote nature of the track means it’s possible to spend days at a time without seeing other hikers.

Key features

This tour from Tharwa to Thredbo features:

  • An isolated and quiet wilderness walking experience.
  • Famous Australian alpine wildflowers and snow gums.
  • A variety of track types including firetrails, single track, and off track walking (guided by us of course!).
  • Many historic alpine huts (around 12 depending on side trips taken).
  • Walking through Namadgi and Kosciuszko National Park, including exploring Australia’s Snowy Mountains and summiting Mount Kosciuszko (the highest point in Australia).

Personal highlights

Having spent a lot of time around this region we can say that some of our own personal highlights covered in this tour include:

  • Summiting Mount Bimberi, the highest point in the ACT (optional side trip).
  • Exploring Blue Waterholes and the surrounding caves.
  • Summiting Mt Jagungal (optional side trip).
  • Visiting the head of Valentine Falls, which has a total drop of 120m (optional side trip).
  • Traversing the Rolling Grounds.
  • Walking past Australia’s highest alpine lakes including Lake Cootapatamba, Club Lake, Blue Lake, and Lake Albina.

Tour details

230 km
7150 m
14 days

This hiking tour is designed to provide a remote wilderness hiking experience. In fact, we only cross two sealed roads on the entire trip. It is a great way to take the next step in outdoor adventures and move beyond day hikes or other more established tracks.

If desired, it is also an excellent opportunity to develop the skills and knowledge to safely hike by yourself and lighten your pack (you are warned: it is dangerous to ask Tom about gear!).

Key information

Tour logistics:

  • Start and finish in Canberra.
  • Walk 230km along the AAWT from Tharwa (Canberra) to Dead Horse Gap (Thredbo), camping along the way.
  • A tour length of 14 days (average 16-17km per day plus many optional side trips).
  • Personally guided by both Tom and Maddie (who are qualified hiking, back country ski touring and rock climbing instructors).
  • Small groups with a maximum size of 6 (with 2 guides for a ratio of 1:3).
  • For a multi-day hiking trip, the difficulty is moderate to challenging. We can tailor the difficulty by adjusting which side trips each person does.

The following is provided:

  • Modern lightweight hiking gear including tents, sleeping bags, packs, mats, trekking poles, and kitchenware (plus a bunch of our other favourite little goodies). We estimate you can hike comfortably with a total pack weight under 10kg for nearly the entire trip. If you have sore shoulders, we aren’t doing our job!
  • All meals and snacks (plus we cook brekkie and dinner).
  • Access to a support vehicle around every 3-4 days (to resupply food and access your own personal drop bag).
  • Personal pre-tour online chat with Tom and Maddie to help you prepare for the trip (plus ongoing communication via email).
  • An excellent opportunity to improve your skills and knowledge for future trips and thru hikes.
  • Each group receives a personal map of virtual reality 360° photos and videos taken on their trip (e.g. see the map below or from our PCT hiking trip). We find this is the best way to remember and capture a trip – much more immersive than a normal photo, video, or action camera.

More details such as tour dates, price and itineraries are coming soon. Sign up below to receive the latest updates. In the meantime, you can explore the region by checking out our interactive virtual reality map below.

Virtual interactive map

You can explore this section of the AAWT in more detail by checking out our interactive virtual reality map below. This is similar to the custom ones we will produce for each group after the tour finishes.

Summary

We are both very excited to run trips on the Australian Alps Walking Track and share our love for our own backyard and local hiking trails. If you would like to be notified when further details are available, you can do so below. If you have any questions feel free to reach out via our Contact Us page, Facebook or Instagram.
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