An Honest Alpine Beauty

With over 450 hectares of pristine National Alpine Park, Falls Creek is Australia’s largest Alpine resort. After World War II the Kiewa Valley Hydroelectric Scheme was commissioned and the first toe rope was built in 1951 to keep the workers entertained across the winter months. The first chairlift was built in 1957, making it Australia’s first chairlift.

In the warmer months Falls Creek remained open for cattle crazing from 1851 until 2005 when the Victorian government called an end to it for environmental reasons. Since then Falls Creek has transformed itself into a true 4 seasons paradise for the thrill seekers and lovers of natural beauty.

The Falls Creek Mountain Bike Park is an absolute belter, with over 46km of trails plus a hell of a lot of backcountry tracks to shred up. The Mountain Bike Trail is mostly designed for XC, it is nice and flowy with a great mixture of terrain to suit all levels. Shuttle buses operate frequently during the busy seasons with multi stop options.

Falls Creek also offers some of the best alpine hiking tracks in Australia. A base for some wonderful short walks to the local Waterfalls and Rocky Valley Lakes, the highest lake in Australia. There are some more challenging multiday hikes such as the such as the 2-night 3 day Falls Creek to Mt Hotham crossing.

The old drovers Huts dotted throughout the Alpine National Park provide great shelter and refuge for hikers and skiers alike whilst also playing an important part in the history of the area. Of the 106 huts throughout the National Park, the oldest hut and the closest to Falls Creek is Wallace Hut, built by the Wallace brothers in 1869 and remarkably survived the bushfires of 2003.

As winter rolls in and snow begins to replace the wild flowers and blankets the peaks around Falls Creek, some world class back country, side country and cross-country terrain opens up. The slopes around Mt Bogong provide great back country for those thrill seekers who want to avoid the crowds and chop some powder. Cross Country trails are extensive throughout the area all around Falls Creek with an incredible 85km of trails. Since 2011 these XC trails have been free to the public resulting a huge increase in XC skiers coming to the area. Falls Creek prides itself as a world XC destination and celebrates this with the annual Kangaroo Hoppet, Australia’s International XC Marathon Race.

As for Downhill skiers and boarders, Falls Creek provides the largest area of downhill trails in Australia, with the majority of the mountain blue runs, for the intermediate skiers, making it a very comfortable resort. Falls Creek being the furthest Alpine resort from Melbourne (approx. 4.5 hours) has its advantages in terms of crowds. You will have more room to shred at Falls Creek then you will at Hotham or Mt Buller. Famous runs such as Scottys and the Summit provide the steep terrain to satisfy the need for speed, whilst local favourite, Fox Trail is a great little bumpy tree run to get lost in on the way home.

Most of the Accommodation in Falls Creek is ski in ski out, which is a great advantage. The accommodation is stacked to suit those travelling on a budget as well has high end luxurious accommodation. Most pubs, cafes and restaurants are open in Winter only, however with the emergence of MTB and Hiking, bringing in strong crowds all round, more and more operators are opening the doors throughout the year. During the winter months the iconic Frying Pan is perfectly situated at the bottom of the Summit and provides cold beer, hot food and the perfect atmosphere to relax and watch the punters tackle the Summit, after a hard day on the slopes.

Falls Creek is quiet simply a cracker in snow, rain or sunshine. An Honest Alpine Beauty that doesn’t pretend to be anything it’s not –  a must see for any visitor coming to Victoria.

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