11 days/ 10 nights – Trekking & Camping
Future Tour departure: TBA
Highlights include: The 9 day trek is a selection of highlights of the Larapinta Trail. Starting in Alice Springs, we hike along scenic ridges, gorges and mountain peaks, including the glorious Mt Sonder, the highest point on the Trail.
Carrying only a day pack as you walk, you’ll experience Serpentine, Ormiston and Redbank Gorges; Finke River; Standley Chasm, Counts Point, Brinkley Bluff and more.
This trek has the international grading of EPIC which means it is extremely hard and only for very fit people. Total 176km in nine full days (107 miles)
Day 1: Arrive Alice Springs
Today you’ll be greeted at Alice Springs Airport by charity founder Brian Penfold to our hotel. Brian will be your host for dinner this evening before our early start the next morning for our trek of a lifetime. Trek briefing and last supper before an early night for an early start.
Day 2: Alice Springs departure, Hike Standley Chasm to Birthday Waterhole
Very Hard – 9 hours – 17.9km – Section 4 is one of the best sections along the entire trail. The views from Brinkley Bluff reinforces why the Larapinta Trail is one of the worlds most spectacular trails. The trek from Standley Chasm to Reveal Saddle is relatively good going. The tricky part starts from the saddle to the Bluff because the ground starts to become very rocky with a couple of false summits. The descent from Brinkley Bluff has been vastly improved with switchbacks after significant track work in 2016 and 2017. From Stuarts Pass it’s easy and smooth going.
Excellent & breathtaking views from Brinkley Bluff
Standley Chasm to Brinkley Bluff is very scenic
Birthday Waterhole is a nice campsite
Stuart’s Pass to Birthday Waterhole is flat, easy going
Day 3: Hike Birthday Waterhole to Hugh Gorge
Very Hard – 10 hours – 16km – Section 5 is definitely one of the most visually spectacular and best sections of the entire Larapinta Trail. The entire section offers great views, particularly between Linear Valley and Hugh Gorge. It is also one of the most difficult sections involving ridgetop walking, steep climbs, clambering over dry river beds and boulders, negotiating waterholes and snaking through thick vegetation and thick river debris in narrow gorge areas.
Excellent views on the high ground around Razorback Ridge
Linear Valley is breathtaking
Hugh Gorge Junction is a nice campsite
Spencer Gorge is rough but beautiful and shady
Day 4: Hike Hugh Gorge to Ellery Creek
Moderate – 11 hours – 31.2km – Section 6 is the longest section of the Larapinta Trail, but much of the trail winds up, around and over undulating and boring terrain for no particular reason. That said, it is a pleasant walk across Alice Valley and a welcoming change after the rugged mountainous terrain of S5. An excellent walk for bird watching. Rocky Gully is a nice halfway campsite.
Views from the Saddle are impressive
Excellent bird life along the entire trail
Ghost Gum Flat campsite. Nice overnight camp option.
Rocky Gap is a nice halfway point. There are also water tanks
Day 5: Hike Ellery Creek to Serpentine Gorge
Hard – 5.5 hours – 13.8km – One of the most mundane sections of the trail, Section 7 can be at times a frustrating walk because the trails wind up small pieces of jagged high ground unnecessarily. Scenically this section does have some impressive views of diverse geological formations and a rich array of typical Central Australian colours. Great walk for bird watchers.
Great geological formations and impressive rocks
Good bird life in the area
Rich array of typical Central Australian colours and shades
Nice views of MacDonnell Ranges to the south
Day 6: Hike Serpentine Gorge to Serpentine Chalet Dam
Hard – 5.5 hours – 13.4km – Section 8 is a great scenic walk with nice viewpoints along the high ground of the trail. Some parts of the section will require steep ascents and descents, but most of these are supported by well-constructed rock steps and trail clearing. The views from Counts Point are magnificent. Easy vehicle access to Serpentine Gorge trailhead.
Counts Point and surrounding views – Excellent
Excellent step construction with slab rock ( on descents)
Great expansive views along the high ground
Day 7: Hike Serpentine Chalet Dam to Ormiston Gorge
Hard – 12 hours – 28.6km – Section 9 is a long walk, with a number of rocky and loose ascents and descents, particularly from Waterfall Gorge to the Mt Giles Lookout. It is, however, one of the most impressive and scenic sections along the trail. From Mt Giles Lookout onwards there are excellent 360-degree views, particularly impressive views of Mount Giles to the north and Mount Sonder to the west.
Spectacular 360 views from Mt Giles Lookout
Nice campsite at Waterfall Gorge
Inarlanga Pass and the cycads
Great expansive views of Heavitree Range
Day 8: Hike Ormiston Gorge to Finke River
Moderate – 4 hours – 9.1km – Section 10 is a pleasant day walk offering nice scenery and views. The best scenery along this section is at the start (Ormiston end) of the walk. It is also a windy and undulating walk from the gorge to Hilltop Lookout. From the lookout onwards the area flattens out a little. There are a number of creek and river crossings to complete, but these almost always dry. The views of Mount Sonder in the distance are great. Ormiston Gorge is magnificent and offers some nice sidewalks such as the Ormiston Pound Walk.
Ormiston Gorge ( & Ormiston Pound Walk. Connected walk)
Views of Mount Sonder along the trail
Nice trailhead shelter at Finke River
Typical Red Centre creeks/rivers lined with old Red Gum tree’s
Day 9: Hike Finke River to Redbank Gorge
Hard – 9.5 hours – 26km – Section 11 is a relatively comfortable but long and scenic walk. From Hill Top Lookout to Rocky Bar Gap there are superb views of Mount Sonder. Sunrise views of Mount Sonder from the Hill Top Lookout are just breathtaking. The steep ascent and descent parts of the trail to Hill Top Lookout have been constructed ( in 2013) exceptionally well making the climbs easier on the knees and ankles.
Spectacular 360 views of Mt Sonder from Hilltop Lookout
Excellent trail construction for the ascent to Hilltop Lookout
Great views of Mt Sonder between Hilltop and Rocky Bar Gap
Day 10: Hike Redbank Gorge to Mount Sonder (return), return to Alice Springs.
Section 12 is an uphill walk the whole way to Mt Sonder. Expect a good physical workout even during the descent off the mountain. The trail is a rocky, loose and occasionally a disappearing track (from the Saddle onwards). The views from the summit are superb and well worth the effort of the climb. No camping at the Mount Sonder summit. On arrival to Alice Springs we’ll transfer to our hotel for a little pampering. Brian will be your host this evening for a special dinner to celebrate our achievement.
Day 11: Depart Alice Springs.
Free time in Alice Springs today before your onward flight. Alternatively, you might also like to transfer to Uluru to spend some time in the world famous national parks.
Escorted by Brian | 2 nights accommodation in Alice Springs | Welcome and Farewell dinners (with drinks) in Alice Springs | All transfers, food & food drops | Camping fees | Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) for the group| Stove fuel is provided for the duration of the trek | water throughout the trek is available from campsites | Maximum group size: 5 participants (including Brian)
international & domestic airfares | travel insurance (compulsory) | trekking equipment, a complete requirement list is available | any other incidental of personal nature or items not listed above.
Cost Per Person:
Inclusive HERO360 Adventure price:
AUD $999.00 per person
Enquire for more information: email@example.com
No single supplement for adults willing to share a room