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Hollow Mountain Walk, Grampians: The Complete Guide

Hollow Mountain Walk, Grampians: The Complete Guide

With intrepid cave exploration, an exhilarating hiking trail, outstanding views and breathtaking indigenous wall art, the Hollow Mountain Walk has it all. In fact, given the length of the Hollow Mountain Walk in the Grampians, it’s incredible bang for buck, easily leaving you time in the day to explore more of the Grampians National Park. So, in this guide, we’ll tell you everything you need to know to hike Hollow Mountain in the northern Grampians.

For more walks in the Grampians, check out 15 Best Hikes In The Grampians: The Complete Guide

What Is Hollow Mountain?

Hollow Mountain is one of the Grampians’ best-kept secrets. On the northern fringes of the national park is an adventurous hike to an area of hollowed-out rocks of the most vibrant oranges and browns. Certainly, from below, you’d have no idea such incredible caverns were hiding within the mountainside.

Reaching these interesting caves, which offer extraordinary window lookouts across the Wimmera Plains and beyond, involves a short 2.5km hike and a bit of steep scrambling. But, the exhilarating Hollow Mountain hike will be sure to end up one of your favourite walks of your entire Grampians trip – it was definitely one of our favourites.

The Hollow Mountain Walk is pretty straightforward. But, there are a few technical rock scramble sections to take into account. Certainly, they’re nothing too taxing, and you’ll find many people completing this out and back with no problem. Also, just be aware that in wet conditions you may find the track surface to be slippery in parts.

Where Is Hollow Mountain, Grampians?

Hollow Mountain sits at the northern end of the Grampians National Park in western Victoria, Australia. To help get your bearings, please click on the image below to access an interactive map of the area on Google Maps.

Hollow Mountain Map

Hollow Mountain Map & Preview

  • Type: Out & Back
  • Distance: 2.5km
  • Time: 1 hour
  • Accumulated elevation gain: 180m
  • Difficulty: Moderate–Hard
  • Trailhead: Hollow Mountain Car Park
  • Map: Wikiloc

Hollow Mountain Walk Description

From the car park, the initial trail is open and switches from a sandy path to a steady incline over rock. As you approach the side of Hollow Mountain, the rock scramble and steep climb begins as you start to wind around the mountainside. The trail then opens up onto an exposed mountainside, where you’ll traverse the rock wall at a steep incline. So take care. It’s these sections that require caution, especially when hiking in wet conditions.

There are yellow arrows sprayed on the rock to lead your way. Follow these arrows as they spiral your path to the top. There’s another rock scramble needed to access the upper sections of Hollow Mountain. But all in all, it’s a short and exhilarating hike.

You’ll find plenty of lookout spots and cosy hangouts as you access small ‘hollow’ sections of the mountain. Indeed, we saw plenty of hikers who had snuggled down in comfortable holes for their tea break. And who can blame them?

From the summit of Hollow Mountain, you’ll find awesome views of neighbouring Mount Zero and Mount Staplyton (more on those below), as well as the rest of the mighty Grampians in the distance. As this was our last hike of the trip, it was nice to be able to look back and survey all we had conquered in the previous days.

Hollow Mountain Caves

If you’ve looked into Hollow Mountain, you’ll have seen the iconic orange-walled cave shot, like in the image below. This cave lookout is really easy to access and enjoy. The trouble Dan and I had was knowing we’d even found it.

Basically, the cave window is found about halfway up the Hollow Mountain walking trail. In fact, the trail leads you straight past the opening, which will be on your left. Somehow we missed it. In fact, we actually saw more people on the top of the Hollow Mountain, enjoying the panoramic views, rather than in this excellent natural shelter.

So, you might find you have this place to yourself. Keep an eye out to your left as you hike up, and you shouldn’t miss it. Or, just do as we did, and visit it on your way back down. It just looks like a large opening and isn’t very deep. But, it’s once you climb inside that you realise how spectacular it is.

But, as we mentioned, there are plenty of little caves and crevices to enjoy along this hike, so you can explore the ‘hollow’ mountain as much as you like.

To complete the Hollow Mountain Walk, return the way you came. Just be sure to take care on the steep scrambly sections. They can be more difficult on the way back down.

Hollow Mountain Caves

Useful Things to Know Before You Go

Below, we’ll touch on a few useful things to know about walking to Hollow Mountain in the Grampians.

How to Get to Hollow Mountain

To start the Hollow Mountain Walk, you’ll need to get to the Hollow Mountain Car Park, just off Mount Zero Road in the northern Grampians. From Halls Gap and the central Grampians, it’s around a 45-minute drive away.

You’ll need your own set of wheels to get to this trailhead and a 4WD is advisable, if possible. If not, it’s fine. We made it to the car park in a 2WD and just took it easy on some of the corrugated roads.

Hollow Mountain Car Park

The Hollow Mountain Car Park is located here on Google Maps. At the car park, you’ll find parking for plenty of vehicles, as well as drop toilets and picnic sites for your convenience.

How Long Is the Hollow Mountain Walk?

The Hollow Mountain Walk is around 2.5km long and takes around an hour to complete. But, that’s moving time. You’ll likely find you spend twice as long at Hollow Mountain as you soak in the views and explore the caves.

Hollow Mountain Walk Difficulty

Although not a long hike, the Hollow Mountain Walk is technically demanding in parts. There are a few sections of mild scrambling, though nothing too difficult – just a little physically demanding. In addition, the trail is not defined for the entire route to the summit. Instead, you’ll need to look out for painted yellow arrows to guide your route to the summit. Exploration of the caves is at your own risk and involves leaving the official way-marked route in parts.

Still, this is an enjoyable hike that is more than doable for those with some degree of hiking experience, basic physical fitness and ultimately a sense of adventure. Enjoy!

Hollow Mountain Grampians
Views across to Mount Stapylton

Where to Go After Hollow Mountain

After hiking Hollow Mountain, there are a few other interesting places as well as other walks you can do in the immediate area. Let’s take a look.

1. Visit Gulgurn Manja Rock Art Shelter

From the Hollow Mountain Car Park, you should certainly visit the Gulgurn Manja Shelter. It’s just an easy 15 minute walk to reach. Here, you’ll find some unbelievable examples of rock art. The site is fenced off to protect the indigenous artwork, whose name means ‘hands of young people’. The images painted on the walls include handprints and emu tracks. It’s quite wonderful.

2. Visit Ngamadjidj Shelter

If you enjoy Gulgurn, then head round to Ngamadjidj Shelter, where you can view more rock paintings. The paintings here are quite different as they’ve been painted in white clay, whereas the majority of the rest of the Grampians rock art is painted in red. You can find the shelter at Stapylton Campground. Again, it’s been fenced off to help preserve it.

3. Hike Mount Zero

  • Type: Out & Back
  • Distance: 2.8km
  • Time: 1 hour
  • Accumulated elevation gain: 150m
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Trailhead: Mount Zero Picnic Area
  • Map: Wikiloc

Mount Zero is a short but steep hike to the north of Hollow Mountain. Its rocky trail winds its way to the summit, from where you can look over Hollow Mountain and Mount Stapylton beyond.

4. Hike Mount Stapylton

  • Type: Out & Back
  • Distance: 5km
  • Time: 2 hour
  • Accumulated elevation gain: 330m
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Trailhead: Mount Zero Picnic Area
  • Map: Wikiloc

Mount Stapylton is a fantastic mountain hike next door to Hollow Mountain. You’ll see cool attractions like Taipan Wall, which is popular for rock climbing, as well as Bird Rock, which incredibly looks like an emu sitting down.

Other Grampians Walks

Certainly, there’s an absolute wealth of outstanding walks in the Grampians National Park. Below is a handful of some of our favourites.

Read more: 15 Best Hikes In The Grampians: The Complete Guide and 12 Must-See Grampians Waterfalls: The Complete Guide

Mackenzie Falls, Grampians
Mackenzie Falls

How to Get to the Grampians

To hike Hollow Mountain, you’ll need to get to the Grampians in the first place. The Grampians lie around 250km west of Melbourne and take around three hours to drive to. For those that don’t have a car, it’s possible to take public transport from Melbourne to the Grampians. But, you’re looking at an extremely long journey.

Instead, it’s best to have access to your own set of wheels. If you need a car, we recommend using DiscoverCars.com. It’s a fantastic search engine for finding the cheapest car hire. Search for cheap car hire in Melbourne today. A 2WD will suffice for this adventure.

Getting to Melbourne

Of course, you’ll first need to fly to Melbourne to visit the Grampians if travelling from abroad. We recommend using Skyscanner to search for the cheapest flights. When flying abroad, we always get the ball rolling with a Skyscanner search. Check out cheap flights to Melbourne today!

Where to Stay in the Grampians

Certainly, the most popular place to stay in the Grampians is Halls Gap. This main hub of the Grampians is just 35km from Hollow Mountain. So, it’s the perfect place to base yourself. Below, we’ve put together the best budget, mid-range and luxury accommodation options to help plan your trip.

  • Budget Grampians Eco YHA: the main hostel in town is the Grampians Eco YHA. Here, you’ll find clean facilities, tidy common rooms and spacious accommodation.
  • Mid-range Halls Gap Lakeside Tourist Park: after a day hiking in the Grampians, relaxing in the pool at Halls Gap Lakeside Tourist Park is a great way to unwind.
  • Luxury Grampians Chalets: watch the local kangaroos out in force at dawn and dusk as you soak in the beautiful scenery and lake views at the Grampians Chalets. Additionally, the Marwood Villas offer a wonderful and memorable stay in Halls Gap.

Hollow Mountain Camping

There’s no camping so to speak at Hollow Mountain. But, you can camp at the nearby Stapylton Campground. You can even begin the Mount Stapylton Loop Walk from here. Pitches need to be booked in advance on the official Parks Vic website. Amenities include drop toilets and shared firepits. By all accounts, Stapylton Campground is a wonderfully quiet alternative to camping in Halls Gap.

But, if you prefer your camping experience to come with a few more amenities and facilities, then you’ll be best heading into Halls Gap. Here, you’ll find Halls Gap Caravan Park, Lake Fyans Holiday Park and Breeze Holiday Parks, which all offer a comfortable experience.

More Grampians Accommodation

Emu's in the Grampians

Five Hiking Gear Essentials For Hollow Mountain

Osprey Skarab 30
Osprey Skarab 30

The Osprey Skarab 30 is our go-to hiking backpack for day hikes. This well-designed unisex backpack is comfortable and spacious, so you’ll have plenty of space to pack everything without feeling the strain on your upper back.

Osprey Ultralight Raincover
Osprey Ultralight Raincover

A waterproof backpack cover is an absolute must when you’re adventuring outdoors. The Osprey Ultralight Raincover Medium is a high-quality waterproof cover that’ll keep your backpack bone dry.

GRAYL Reusable Water Bottle
GRAYL Reusable Water Bottle

The GRAYL GeoPress is the best water filter bottle that allows you to purify 710mL (12 ounces) of water. This bottle will make water safe to drink wherever you’re hiking.

BUFF Original Ecostretch
BUFF Original Ecostretch

The BUFF Original Ecostretch is a great option when it comes to multifunctional headwear. We use the Ecostretch as a neck gaiter to keep the sun off our necks and it helps us keep warm in cooler climates.

Sony Cybershot RX100 VII
Sony Cybershot RX100 VII

Capture epic photos and videos with the Sony Cybershot RX100 VII. This is hands-down the best compact camera. We love using this simple point-and-shoot camera when we’re hiking as it’s lightweight and durable.

To find out more about all of the gear that we use and recommend, read our guides about our favourite hiking gear, travel gear and camera gear. Otherwise, read our comprehensive travel packing checklist.

Bonus Tips

  • Beat the crowds: to walk to Hollow Mountain with fewer people, consider hiking early or late in the day, and during the week. Weekends and school holidays will likely be much busier.
  • Weather: remember to take care in wet weather as the rocks can become slippery.
  • More of Victoria: certainly, some of our favourite places in Victoria include exploring along the Great Ocean Road, Mornington Peninsula and of course, Wilsons Prom (guides coming soon).

Bookmark or save this post ready for your trip to the Grampians.

Beck Piggott

With an art and design based background, Beck uses photography and writing to help inspire readers to climb mountains, hike coastal trails and chase waterfalls around the globe.

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