Trek the Larapinta Trail

  • 5 days
  • Departs at 07:00am
  • Camping Tour
  • Alice Springs
  • Overview
  • What to Expect
  • Additional Information

Overview

Overview

If you’re looking to travel to the heart of the Australian Outback, then the West MacDonnell National Park is your place. And there’s no better way to experience and immerse yourself in this unforgettable landscape than the Larapinta Trail. Hike along the red rock slopes of the West Macs and enjoy the time to truly connect to Country and appreciate the importance of this place to the local people over thousands of years. Hike to shadowed gorges, snaking riverbanks, open plains and towering mountains filled with a rich diversity of animals and plants, taking in sights like Ormiston Gorge and a rewarding ascent of Mt Sonder. One of the world’s best desert treks is waiting for you.

Highlights

Why you'll love this trip

  • Experience the challenges and rewards of an active Australian adventure, with days of hiking and wild swimming, and nights around the campsite fire sharing Outback yarns.

  • Explore the majestic Ormiston Gorge, the most spectacular chasm in the West MacDonnell Ranges, and maybe cool off in the year-round waterhole.

  • Enjoy the unique experience of camping out overnight along the trail, making the most of the remoteness and the star-filled desert skies.

  • Cap your Larapinta Trail experience with a summit of Mt Sonder, the highest point in the West Macs, and the perfect place to look over the landscape and back at what you’ve achieved.

Inclusions

  • Meals - 4 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners

  • Transport - Private vehicle, walking

  • Accommodation - Swag Camping (4 Nights)

Operated By

Intrepid Travel

What to Expect

What to Expect

Day 1: Alice Springs - Ormiston Gorge
Begin this beautiful bushwalking track today by stretching your legs on Section 1 of the Larapinta Trail. We begin our walk from the official start of the trail at the historic Alice Springs Telegraph Station at 7am. The Station was founded in 1871 and used for relaying messages between Darwin and Adelaide. Follow the route of the old telegraph line through the rocky, rolling country that spreads out before you, winding along a path that makes its way over creeks and gullies. Walk along the scenic spine of the Euro Ridge and take in the excellent views of the surrounding Alice Valley, with the gnarled peaks of the West Macs out in the distance. Follow the trail downhill to Wallaby Gap, home to elusive black-footed rock-wallabies and a great place for birdwatching. After this, you’ll be met by your 4x4 vehicle and transferred to your campsite for the night in Ormiston Gorge, right in the heart of the Western MacDonnell Ranges. Sleep beneath countless stars in your swag tonight.

Accommodation

  • Swag Camping (1 Night)

Included Activities

Optional Activities

Meals

  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Day 2: Ormiston Gorge to Finke River
Today is your first full day of hiking, beginning at the beautiful Ormiston Pound, home to the most impressive gorge in the whole West MacDonnell region. There’s a near-permanent waterhole shaded by ghost gums and towering red rock walls that is more than welcoming to any walker. The trail weaves its way from Ormiston to the Finke River through rolling limestone hills filled with unique plant life. The Finke is one of the oldest river systems in the world, and the local Arrernte name for this waterway gives the whole trail its name – Lhere Pinte, which means a salty river. You’ll return to your camp in Ormiston Gorge tonight with time to enjoy a welcome, tasty dinner and swap stories around the campfire.

Accommodation

  • Swag Camping (1 Night)

Included Activities

Optional Activities

Meals

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Days 3-4: Davenport River - Redbank Gorge
The next two days are the most challenging but also rewarding section of your Larapinta hike. This trail and its views are dominated by Mt Sonder, the highest point in the West MacDonnell Ranges. It’s an undulating 26 kilometres across spinifex-covered hills, making your way through the foothills towards to the hulking mountain. Cross the Davenport River then make the climb up to Hilltop Lookout, an ascent that’s rewarded with panoramic views of the peak and its surroundings. Descend through mulga woodland and past distinctive knobbly black rock to shady Rocky Bar Gap and along the southern flank of Mt Sonder to Redbank Creek. You’ll have to sacrifice hot showers for the next two nights as you camp out overnight along the trail (with our transport truck meeting us each night), but the incredible scenery is more than worth it. You’ll finish Day 4 at a campsite in Redbank Gorge, in the shadow of the mountain itself.

Accommodation

  • Swag Camping (1 Night)
  • Swag Camping (1 Night)

Included Activities

Optional Activities

Meals

  • Breakfast (2)
  • Lunch (2)
  • Dinner (2)

Day 5: Mount Sonder - Alice Springs
Hopefully, you got an early night yesterday as today you’ll be up with the possums at 1 am for an early start to climb to the summit of the iconic Mt Sonder. The early start allows you to climb in the cool morning air before the sun begins to beat down. The mountain is known traditionally as Rwetyepme – in local Arrernte culture she's portrayed as a pregnant woman forever doomed to lay on her back and watch the sky. It’s not an easy climb, but the journey to the peak is worth the sweeping views in all directions of Central Australia, taking in the trails you’ve covered over the past few days, the Tanami Desert in the north, meteor craters in the south, and the NT’s highest mountain in the west. It’s the perfect way to cap off the trip. Afterward, you’ll make your return to Alice Springs, where you’ll enjoy a well-earned shower and time to rest and maybe celebrate your journey with a farewell dinner.

Included Activities

Optional Activities

Meals

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch

Additional Information

Additional Information

Is this trip right for you?

  • When travelling in Central Australia temperatures can range from very high in the day, to below freezing at night. Please ensure you pack appropriate clothing.

  • Accommodation for this trip is Swag Camping under the stars, which includes bedrolls containing mattress, pillow and sleeping bag. This is an amazing and authentic Australian experience!

  • There is a very early morning start on Day 5 to climb to the summit of Mt Sonder for an incredible sunrise. Though it will be difficult to get up early for this trek, it will be well worth it for the views.

  • It is required you have an excellent level of fitness and are prepared to trek for multiple hours a day through a variety of terrain.

  • This trip is new to our range this year. And while we have thoroughly researched every detail of the logistics, new destinations and working with new partners can sometimes throw us some unexpected surprises. More often than not, it’ll be a great surprise. But every now and again there might be a hiccup. We like to think that’s what puts the ‘adventure’ in ‘adventure travel’.

If you cancel some or all portions of your booking the cancellation terms set out below will apply. A cancellation will only be effective when we receive written confirmation that you have sent to your relevant sales representative of the cancellation. If you cancel a trip:

 (a) 21 days or more prior to departure, we will hold the deposit amount as a credit;

or

 (b) 20 days or fewer prior to departure:

  • we will hold 50% of the monies paid by you in connection with the booking as a credit and retain the remaining 50% of monies paid by you in connection with your booking; or
  • if the cancellation is due to you having COVID-19/ “flu-like symptoms”,  supported by a medical certificate, we will hold 100% of monies paid by you in connection with the booking as credit.

Any credit resulting from a cancellation under this clause 7 (Cancellation by you) does not have an expiry date and may be applied towards any other available trip offered by us. This credit is not transferrable or redeemable for cash. This credit excludes flights or insurance as they will have their own booking conditions.

Note that different cancellation conditions apply to some styles of trips and additional services as set out in the Special Conditions and the Essential Trip Information relating to your trip. Your booking consultant will advise if differences apply. You are strongly advised to take out cancellation insurance at the time of booking. If you leave a trip for any reason after it has commenced, we are not obliged to make any refunds for unused services. If you fail to join a trip, join it after departure, or leave it prior to its completion, no refund will be made. The above cancellation terms are in addition to fees which may be levied by accommodation providers, travel agents or third-party tour and transport operator fees. Please refer to clause 19 (Liability), which provides more information about your rights under Australian Consumer Law which may apply to your cancellation.