Logging of Victoria’s Great Forest has ended! What better way to celebrate than by tackling a marathon while supporting the call to make it a national park and return the land to Aboriginal ownership.


If you didn’t hear about Victoria’s monumental decision to end native logging early, then you might want to check the Wi-Fi signal from the rock you’re living under. 

On 24th May the decision was made by the Victorian Government to end native logging by January 2024, significantly earlier than the previous target of 2030. This decision alone is expected to save the equivalent of the emissions from 730,000 cars every year! 

Victoria’s Great Forest region (based about 60km northeast of Melbourne / Naarm) is just one of the many regions that will benefit from the decision. The region is the mountain forests and rivers of the Gunaikurnai, Taungurung, and Wurundjeri Peoples – land on which permission to log was never sought nor given. 


The Great Forest, Victoria, Trail Running


Years of logging have seriously and detrimentally impacted the biodiversity of the forest, altering the composition of tree species and driving many once-common animals, such as the Greater Glider, to the brink of extinction. 

Where does the trail run come into it?

While we can all agree the exit from native forest logging is well overdue, the establishment of the Great Forest National Park and the return of the land to Aboriginal ownership is next on the agenda.

The establishment of the area as a national park will not only help reverse extinction trends and create a vast carbon sink, but also protect Melbourne / Naarm’s water source and help build a recreation economy to get others out there to enjoy the incredible region. 


The Great Forest, Victoria, Trail Running


The Great Forest Marathon is a trail running event to support the campaign to establish the Great Forest National Park and protect the biodiversity and cultural significance of the Yarra Ranges and Central Highlands forever.

Read more: Peek Inside What Could be the Great Forest National Park

You’ll traverse 22km or 44km of ancient Mountain Ash forests of the Yarra Ranges and Central Highlands alongside other trailblazers – with an aim to fundraise a whopping $120,000 for the cause. Each of the 120 runners is tasked with raising at least $1,000 each in order to race – but don’t worry, the crew has a heap of fundraising resources to make sure everyone hits the target. 

Keen? Get in quick!

The race will take place on Sunday 12th of November 2023. Registrations are now open for both races, but places are strictly capped at 120 between both the 44km and 22km trails. So if you’re keen, don’t delay! Once the list is full, additional runners will be added to a waitlist.

And just a heads up:

  • you must be at least 18 years old to race
  • if you’re running the 44km trail, you must be able to run a marathon in under six hours

Entry costs are $150 for the 22km trail and $200 for the 44km.

Sign Up Now!


The Great Forest, Victoria, Trail Running


The Great Forest Trail Marathon strongly encourage a take nothing but photographs, leave nothing but footprints approach to the event – so pack your reusable water bottles folks!

A trail run through an epic ancient forest that also protects the future of the landscape and its furry inhabitants? Sign us up!


Photography by Majell Backhauser