• Distance 5.63km
  • Altitude max 1935m
  • Altitude min 1733m
  • 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 Hiker Difficulty Grading System is based on the australian standard for measuring trail hikes.

Parking
Toilets
Rubbish Bins
Camping Grounds
Showers

Porcupine Walking Track NSW (5.7km)

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

Porcupine Walking Track car park

Finish Location

Porcupine Walking Track car park

Porcupine Walking Track Review

As I work my way through the walks in Kosciuszko National Park I was looking forward to doing the Porcupine Walking Track having previously done it during wintertime as a snowshoe trip. While I knew I would enjoy this walk it surprised me and from my perspective ranks as one of the best walks we have done over the past year.

First up this walk really is one for the warmer months but it does share some common trail tread with the ‘Porcupine Trail’ which is the snowshoe version for the snow covered months. Probably the hardest part of this walk is getting to the trailhead (see details below). Take the first turn on the left past the Man From Snowy River Motel which you will come across as you enter the Perisher township. There are signs at this turn and others along the way that will take you through to the trailhead adjacent to the local water supply dam. Parking is limited consisting of two small pullout areas that will suit about seven cars providing everyone has parked straight.

There is a small interpretive sign at the trailhead and then you will cross a small metal bridge to commence your trail. The trail tread is a well worn single pathway interspersed with the occasional metal mesh or small wooden bridge that takes you across small creek crossings and wet areas. Along the way you will come to two turnoffs, both on the left hand side. The first is well sign posted as a link trail and the second takes you off the main walking trail onto the wintertime snowshoe trail. The snowshoe trail (Porcupine Trail) has its own signage (see below) but if you feel like going off track, this trail is well worth a visit.

To stay on the Porcupine Track ignore both of these turn offs and continue on the well worn path. Your destination is the saddle at the top of the hill and at this stage you will come across directional signage that takes you to the Porcupine Rocks which is the high point of the trail and provides great views across the valley you have walked up as well as the valley on the other side of the ridge line.

On the day I visited this peak the wind gusts were reaching 40km+ so I opted for the nearby adjacent rock outcrop that provided good views but also some protection from the wind gusts. After taking in the views I wandered over to the main rock peak and took in the views from the differing vantage points. The return journey is much quicker and follows the same track you followed on the way out but it does provide views down the valley as you go. While there were plenty of people on the trail the weekday I did this walk it still has that primal almost wilderness feel about it and combined with the shadowing created by the incoming cloud cover, this walk just had a really good feel.

Wildlife was non existent on this day which isn’t surprising and given the wind gusts the birds were also nowhere to be seen. Vegetation consisted of heathland and eucalyptus mallee but what I really loved were the wildflowers spread along the trail including trigger plants which are a favourite of mine.

This is a great walk that also allows you to go off track if you feel so inclined – it is well worth doing.

Close up of trailhead sign

Trail start

Trail sign

Off we go

Trail example near trail start

View to the side of the trail

View on the way up

Link trail turnoff

Snowshoe Track – this is not the walking track

Yellow wildflower

Trail post

Trail markers

Trail example

Grasshopper

Mesh over wet areas on the trail

 

Summit direction signs

Direction to the summit

Trail sign near the summit

Yarrow, looks pretty but is actually a weed

Approaching the summit

Epicormic growth on a eucalyptus

View to the main summit. On the day I walked this track it was too windy to climb the final summit

Panorama coming off summit

Summit image

Orange wildflower

Yam Daisy

View across the valley on the way back

Leek Orchid on the side of the trail

View on the way down

Vehicle acess to the pumphouse

Trigger plants (Stylidium)

Millipede

Returning to the car park

Walk Video

This short video includes still images and video  showing this 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

Once you have entered the park follow Kosciuszko Road until you come to Perisher Valley. The turn to get to the trailhead car park is on the left hand side immediately as you pass The Man from Snowy River Hotel

Entering the Kosciuszko National Park

Approaching Perisher

Perisher Valley

The Man from Snowy River Hotel

Turnoff to the trailhead car park immediately as you go past the Man From Snowy River Hotel

Turn right at this turn

Approaching the trailhead

Turn right to the trailhead

Car park 2

Turn right again

Car park

Car park at the trailhead

Things to Know

  • Phone: There is limited phone signal on this track, mainly at the high points
  • Water: You need to bring your own water. There are limited locations to draw water on the trail but if doing so you should filter
  • Toilets: There are no toilets at this trailhead with the closest being at Perisher Valley or at the Sawpit Creek Picnic Area located at the Kosciuszko Tourist Park shortly after you enter the park
  • Dogs: No dogs allowed
  • Other: There are two turnoffs on this trail. The first is a link trail and the second is the snowshoe trail. DO NOT take these turnoffs unless that is your plan

Disclaimer

This walk was undertaken by the team from Australian Hiker

Australian Hiker Newsletter

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