• Distance 11.2km
  • Altitude max 1234m
  • Altitude min 948m
  • Duration 3.5 hours
  • Trail type Return
Three Stars

Three Stars

Worth Doing

The Australian Hiker Experience Rating is a measure of the overall quality of a walk. It is intended to help you decide whether to walk a trail, not to measure anything objective. Consider this our personal take on the walk.

Grade Three

Grade Three

Suitable for most ages and fitness levels. Some bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may have short steep hill sections a rough surface and many steps. Walks up to 20km.

The Australian Grading system is based on the australian standard for measuring trail hikes.

Rubbish Bins
Camping Grounds

Pallaibo Walking Track NSW (11.2km)

Kosciuszko National Park

Nearest Town

Jindabyne, NSW

Best Time of the Year to Travel

  • For newer hikers – November to late March
  • For experienced hikers who can cope with snow conditions and navigation off trail – year round

Starting Location

Kosciuszko Tourist Park picnic area, NSW. You can also start and Finish this trail from the Thredbo River Campground

Finish Location

Kosciuszko Tourist Park Picnic Area, NSW. You can also start and finish this trail from the Thredbo River Picnic Area

Pallaibo Walking Track Track Review

The Pallaibo Walking Track offers a lot of variety including open forest, creek and river frontage and grassland. The walk can be done in a couple of different ways. If you don’t feel like doing the full 11.2km you can start at the Sawpit Creek Picnic Area and finish at the Thredbo River Picnic Area for a distance of 5.6km and have someone pick you up otherwise you can start at either picnic area and do the return walk. The advantage of starting at the Thredbo River Picnic Area is that you do all the hard work on the first half of the walk and have an easier finish. Your choice!

This walk includes a good chunk of the Sawpit Walking Track but rather than turning off to do a loop you continue to follow Sawpit Creek down the valley until you hit the Thredbo River and then the halfway mark at the Thredbo River Picnic Area. If only doing half the distance, this is where your pick up pick point will be. If doing the full walk, this is where you’ll turn around and head back to the Sawpit Creek Picnic Area.

The trail tread on this walk is formed single file and I must admit prior to starting the walk, I had a different idea of what it would be like and it ended up being better than I expected. The walk on the way down is very much a downhill walk with the occasional small uphill and flat section but its when you start the return that it becomes harder and makes the legs and lungs burn just that bit more.

Vegetation wise the trail is mainly Eucalyptus forest with the occasional section of grassland as you approach the halfway mark. Animal wise there were lots of Wallabies but as usual as soon as they saw walkers they disappeared pretty quickly. On the day we did this walk in mid February we also came across a Tiger Snake just off the edge of the trail. Usually when we walk Gill will walk in front of me and I bring up the rear 10-20 metres behind snapping away with my cameras. On this occasion I was fairly close to Gill and she startled the Tiger Snake on the edge of the trail which proceeded to escape immediately behind her before realising it was now in the middle of the two of us. I must admit I had never seen a Tiger Snake in full threat mode before with the head raised and flattened, hissing and facing-off at us. Most other snakes will try to get away from us as quickly as possible but not this one. We left it in peace and continued on with our walk with no other sightings. We did come across a number of other hikers starting the walk from the Thredbo River end and one we talked with indicated she had regularly seen snakes before during the warmer months.

This is a great walk that provides plenty of versatility with the option of doing the shorter or longer version. It is well worth doing!

Entry to the tourist park on the left side of the road if approaching from Jindabyne

Trail signage

Trailhead information kiosk

Close up of Sawpit information signage

Crossing Sawpit Creek at the start of the walk

Follow the signs

Pallaibo information sign just after the trail starts

Trail example

Trail example near the start

Panorama image of the track

Crossing the creek again

Trail directional signage – these are few and far between but the trail is relatively easy to locate

Trail example


Follow the signs

Looking down to the creek below

Alternate track option

Wallaby in the bushes if you look closely


Trail example

Scribbly Gum

Another creek crossing

Bushland off the side of the trail

Angry Tiger Snake near the base of the tree in the centre of the image

Epicormic growth

Lake Jindabyne down below

Red bark

Not quite in flower

Approaching grassland near the river

Another trail example

Approaching Thredbo River Picnic Area

Barbecue facilities at Thedbo River

Gill at Thredbo River Picnic Area

Bridge crossing Thredbo River

Trailhead signage at Thredbo River

Car park at Thredbo River

Thredbo River

Heading back

Heading back uphill

Steps on the way back

Back at the trailhead

Walk Video

This short video contains photos and video from our walk to show you the walk from start to finish

Getting There

Travel to Jindabyne via Cooma and head towards Charlotte Pass. There is a park entry fee which you can pay for as a day or annual pass at the visitor centre in Jindabyne or at the toll gates on nearing the park. The visitor centre  in Jindabyne opens at 8:30am most days but check the timings on the website just in case.

Follow Kosciuszko Road and turn into the Kosciuszko Tourist Park. Take the first turn on the left to the picnic area

Entering the National Park

Park entry point

Approaching Sawpit Creek with the trailhead on the left

Entry to the tourist park

Turn left on entering the tourist park

Trailhead car park

Entrance to the Thredbo River Picnic Area just after you cross the bridge over the river when coming from Jindabyne. This can be an alternate start site

Things to Know

  • You can start this walk at the upper trailhead at Sawpit Creek or at the lower trailhead at the Thredbo River Picnic Area (which is immediately after crossing the bridge over Thredbo River)
  • If you only want to walk this track in one direction start at Sawpit Creek because the views will be better and you will be walking downhill for most of the walk
  • There is some phone signal on this track but its minimal
  • You need to bring your own water. There are some locations to draw water on the trail but if doing so you should filter
  • The are two sets of toilets on the trail located at each trailhead
  • The March Flies can be ruthless from mid November to mid March so wear long sleeves and long pants. They don’t care about insect repellent
  • No dogs allowed
  • Snakes are likely during the hotter months

Trail elevation graph


This walk was undertaken by the team from Australian Hiker

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