Mt Arapiles: A Rock Climbing Mecca
Mt Arapiles is a striking rock formation that rises from the Wimmera Plains in western Victoria. It’s situated within the Mount Arapiles-Tooan State Park and widely acknowledged as Australia’s premier rock climbing area. Birdwatching, walking and wildflowers, are just a few other attractions of this unique destination.
It’s certainly a rock climber’s – and abseiler’s – paradise with a wide variety of tracks leading to the 369 metre summit and catering to everyone from beginners (with a tour) to highly experienced climbers. For those not fond of vertical ascents there are two walking tracks starting at Centenary Park at the base of the cliffs. Whichever way you choose to make your way to the top, you’ll be rewarded with astounding views.
The park is valuable for nature conservation and boasts a huge variety of fauna and bird life. From Lookout Road you can follow a short nature walk, which will introduce you to some of the local native flora. Visit in spring for a spectacular display of wildflowers and to discover a huge variety of birds.
The Mount Arapiles-Tooan State Park covers 5060 hectares and includes other fascinating sites such as Mitre Rock, next to Mt Arapiles. There are several vehicle tracks in the park, ideal for both cars and bicycles. Picnics are also popular.
Camping is permitted in Centenary Park, and there are hotels and hostels at the nearby town of Natimuk, which makes a great base from which to explore the region. Natimuk Lake, 4 km outside the town, is another picturesque spot with a caravan park and a serene lakeside setting – the ideal spot to relax after a day of discovery at magnificent Mt Arapile.