Mt Kosciuszko, Australia

Australia's highest mountain - 13 km, 4 hrs return

Walkers starting out on the Summit walk to Mt Kosciuszko (2228 m)MOUNT KOSCIUSZKO is Australia’s highest peak at 2228 metres. Yet it is accessible to just about everyone. We have seen 75 year olds taking their 6 year-old grand children on the fabulous walk to the summit. The 13 km walk takes four hours along a track which is well maintained and clearly marked.

KOSCIUSZKO HISTORY: From the valley of the Murray River, the polish explorer Paul Edmund Strzelecki ascended these Australian Alps on 15th February 1840. A 'pinnacle, rocky and naked, predominant over several others' was chosen by Strzelecki for a point of trigonometrical survey. 'The particular configuration of this eminence', he recorded, 'struck me so forcibly by the similarity it bears to a tumulus elevated in Krakow over the tomb of the patriot Kosciusko, that although in a foreign country, but amongst a free people, who appreciate freedom and its votaries, I could not refrain from giving it the name of Mount Kosciusko'. in 1997 the Geographical Names Board of NSW changed the spelling to KOSCIUSZKO.

Your mountain guide pointing the way to the summit RAWSON PASS lies at the junction of the Summit Walk (goes to Charlottes Pass) and The Kosciuszko Walk (from Thredbo). Until 1976 it was possible to drive through Rawson Pass to within a few metres of the summit. The walking track to Mount Kosciuszko from Charlotte Pass is now that road, which was closed to public motor vehicle access due to environmental concerns. This track is also used by cyclists as far as Rawson Pass, where they must leave their bicycles and continue onto the summit on foot.

KOSCIUSZKO NATIONAL PARK: One of the Australian Alps national parks, this park is nationally and internationally recognised as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. It contains nine wilderness areas, and its alpine and sub-alpine areas contain plant species found nowhere else in the world.

Map of walking Route of Mt Kosciuszko

ITINERARY for Mt. Kosciuszko - 13 km

  • HOW TO GET THERE: Arrive in Thredbo N.S.W by bus or car. Closest main towns are Jindabyne and Khancoban.
  • WHERE TO START: Thredbo Village chairlift
  • WHEN TO GO: This is a good all year-round walk except when the weather is bad or snowed under. Spring, summer and autumn.
  • THE WALK: We start with a ride up to the top of the Kosciuszko Express or Crackenback chairlift. From the top of the chairlift there is a raised mesh walkway to the summit to protect the native vegetation and prevent erosion. Once disembarked we follow a footpath, passing the Kosciuszko and Cootapatamba lookouts (which are good spots to take in the views and a rest). Then onto Rawson Pass. At Rawson Pass, the walk meets the old Kosciuszko road. From here, the walk continues up the footpath to the top of Mt Kosciuszko.
  • FACILITIES: Thredbo has a full range of services. If you’re there for the day, you’ll need a National parks day pass (around $16). There are a range of walks in the area, some being overnight. An amazing experience if you have the time. There are toilets at the top and bottom of the chairlift. Also a welcome rest stop at Rawson’s Pass, which has the highest toilet in Australia.
  • FOOD & WATER: Always take about a litre of water and some snacks to keep you going and enjoying your walk.
  • WALKING GEAR: Good walking boots and socks are critical. Your shoes should have been broken in. Also important is what rain gear to take. Make sure it’s made from a breathable material.
Our Take:

If you are visiting Thredbo or the Kosciuszko National Park, this walk is a ‘must do’ for all of you. Remember to take your camera! You'll be able to tell your friends that you walked to the top of Australia's highest mountain.