The rocks are located approximately 1.5 km along a walking track that starts at the nearby Mt Erica carpark. The track climbs gently through picturesque wet forest, with tall Mountain Ash trees towering above. There are also pockets of cool temperate rainforest, complete with prehistoric-looking tree ferns and Myrtle Beech. The track can be slippery and muddy after wet weather so good walking shoes are recommended. Several sections include a boardwalk covered in wire mesh.
Once walkers have arrived at Mushroom Rocks, hours can be spent exploring and scrambling among the maze of moss-covered giant boulders. The 3 km round trip to the rocks and back would make a great short hike, particularly with adventurous kids. In spring and early summer there are also plenty of wildflowers to see, including gorgeous subalpine orchids.
The track continues on past Mushroom Rocks, and walkers can go further for a longer and more challenging hike. In fact, the track forms part of the Australian Alps Walking Track, and goes all the way across the high country of Victoria and New South Wales before finishing in the ACT! However, a satisfying day walk is to continue on to Mt Erica and Talbot Hut ruins before returning to the carpark, which is an out-and-back hike of approximately 8.6 km in total.
Snow Gums and wildflowers in the mist on the Baw Baw Plateau
There are lots of unofficial footpads around Mushroom Rocks, so make sure you find the one marked with the sign to Mt Erica. The track then climbs very steeply up to the Baw Baw Plateau. This is a much more difficult section due to the long steep climb, and the track is rocky underfoot. The scenery changes from tall wet forest to subalpine woodland dominated by the striking Snow Gums with their beautiful multi-coloured bark.
The track flattens out after around two kilometres and there is a sign to mark the summit of Mt Erica. There isn't a view but the surrounding area is beautiful – the mossy rocks and subalpine vegetation creating plenty of photo opportunities.
The track stays mostly flat and continues for around another 800 metres over a small creek to a short side track that leads to the ruins of Talbot Hut, the turnaround point of the hike. All that remains of the hut, which was destroyed in a storm in 1938, is a chimney. The little glade is a relaxing spot to rest and eat before the return hike back to the carpark. Care should be taken on the steep and rocky return descent.
The carpark at the start/end of the walk has picnic tables and a toilet. The walk is in a fuel stove-only area (i.e. no fires) and dogs are not allowed.
The walk departs from the Mt Erica carpark. It's about a 45 minute drive from Moe, the closest major town, located 47 km to the south on the Princes Freeway (M1). From Moe, take the Moe-Walhalla Road (C466) and follow it north. At the Walhalla turnoff, continue north on Thomson Valley Road (C481) before reaching Mt Erica Road on the left. The carpark is at the end of Mt Erica Road. It is a steep dirt road but is usually well maintained and suitable for 2WD in good weather. In winter when there is likely to be snow and ice a 4WD is recommended. The walk can be achieved in a long day trip from Melbourne, particularly in summer when there is more daylight. As an alternative, camping is allowed at Mushroom Rocks. The lovely tourist town of Walhalla – another option for an overnight stay – is 28 km away.
The walk is located in a subalpine mountain environment and the weather can change very quickly. All walkers – especially those taking the longer walk to Talbot Hut ruins – should be well prepared with walking shoes, food, water, a map and wet weather gear. Check weather conditions before you go.
Approximately 3 km return to Mushroom Rocks and back.
Approximately 8.6 km return to Talbot Hut ruins and back.
Remember to allow time and extra distance to explore around the rocks!