MacKenzie Falls is the most popular waterfall in the Grampians due to its height, its reliable flow and its relative ease of access close to the Northern Grampians Road.
Water flows powerfully over the chiselled, jet black wall of rock into a small, deep pool, with several smaller cascades directly upstream.
Above: The falls when it was still legal to swim there
(Order this image)
To reach the falls from the car park it is a steep walk down to the viewing area at the base of the falls. There are dozens of steps to negotiate.
When I visited you could stop at the viewing platform adjacent to the base of the falls, or hop down and wander around the edge of the pool to see
the falls from directly in front. Expect a fair bit of spray down here on a windy day.
From the MacKenzie Falls car park you can also branch off to Broken Falls, a few hundred metres upstream. They are shorter and with a more dissipated stream, but definitely
worth a look on the way back up to your car.
It was a fascinating time to visit the falls after the 2014 bushfires cleared away the vegetation along the river. This meant that you could see the falls
from more angles, as well as being able to see some of the smaller cascades upstream. Driving past in 2014 I could see the falls in full view from the Northern
Grampians Road, which was not possible prior to the bushfires.
Your Seasonal Guide:
|Reliable flow all year from regulated releases at Lake Wartook directly upstream
||Visit from mid-afternoon onwards to see the most sunlight on the falls|
Other Information Before You Go:
Wartook Road, Grampians National Park, 18 km west of Halls Gap and 270 km
(approx. 3.5 hrs drive) west of the Melbourne CBD.
Take the Western Hwy to Ararat then the Ararat-Halls Gap Rd to Halls Gap.
From Halls Gap take the Northern Grampians Rd for 18 km then turn right into Wartook Rd
and follow the signs to the falls nearby.
30 m Approx. width:
Swimming available at the falls:
Yes, but no longer permitted by the managing authority
Car park, public toilets, visitor centre
Will depend on extent of forest regrowth along the track. There is no shade at the base
of the falls.
No cats or dogs, no swimming
There is camping at unpowered sites throughout the Grampians National Park, with the closest to the falls at Smiths Mill. If you are planning to stay overnight
in the area you can try the following nearby options. All distances below are by road, not as the crow flies.
Lake Wartook, upstream on the MacKenzie River
Before you head out, make sure to read the
waterfall safety information
and check with the managing authority for any current change of conditions.
The marker indicates the approximate location of the car park at the falls. If the map is not zoomed in locally, as can occur with some browsers, simply refresh this web page.
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If you would like to leave a comment about this waterfall, please fill in the comment box below.
I'm particularly interested in your experiences after visiting, and any changes in conditions, etc.
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© Brad Neal 2021. All rights reserved.