Feel wild and free as you wind your way through river valleys, encounter rustic stockman’s huts and climb to stunning heights in the Pilot Wilderness zone of the Kosciuszko National Park.


  • A relatively easy 20km return walk in the one of Australia’s most beautiful national parks
  • Visit a stockman’s hut built in 1935
  • A mountain biker’s paradise

The Lowdown

Into the wild: straight away your mind slips to Emile Hirsch surviving in the Alaskan wilderness, right? Well sorry to disappoint you but my microadventure in Pilot Wilderness isn’t quite so raw and tremendous. It does involve retro 80’s ski jackets, an insanely amazing day hike and that feeling we all love.. a feeling of being wild and free.

Park yourself up at Dead Horse Gap on the Alpine Way & follow the track beyond the “Cascades Trail” sign. The walk is easily mapped out and you will primarily follow a gravel track over the Thredbo River and past Bob’s Ridge. We set off just before 7am catching a gorgeous sunrise over the snow-capped mountains. It took us exactly 3 hours to arrive at Cascades Hut – taking time out to try & skate on frozen lakes and capture it on our phones!

The walk winds through gum forests & into mystic valleys. It bends and inclines, taking you to great heights with expansive views. We chose to walk in the month of June and I would perhaps recommend sticking to the earlier summer months unless you’re prepared with snowshoes and cross country skis.

Pilot Wilderness Kosciusko National Park Hut Tiffany Hulm, hut, shack, shelter

Cascades Hut is rustic & cosy, with a fire inside if you’re sleeping over. If not then pop your bottle of bubbles, gorge on cheese and take in the serenity. Two options from here; take the same 10km track back for a return journey or continue to follow the path deeper into Pilot Wilderness past Tin Mine Huts to Nine Mile Trail which will spit you out at Barry Way – where you’ll need to be collected.

Note: Kosciuszko’s Alpine Huts are only for emergency use. You should bring a tent and not rely on the huts. More here.

Essential Gear Required

  • Water
  • Camera
  • Sun protection
  • Snow friendly hiking boots (waterproof, thick, grippy soles)
  • A sleeping mat, sleeping bag and tent if you’re staying out for a night
  • Snacks

How To Get There

Pilot Wilderness is part of the Kosciuszko National Park

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  • Hiking
  • Photography
  • Camping
  • Mountain biking
  • Picnicking

Skill Level

Intermediate – you’ll need to be fit to walk 20km in a single day.

Distance Covered

20km return track, 1793m elevation.


More awe-inspiring day hikes in NSW…

Half Day Sunrise and Waterfalls in the Blue Mountains (NSW)

America Bay Microadventure // Ku-ring-gai National Park (NSW)

High Country Wilderness (NSW)

The Big Hole & Marble Arch // Deua National Park (NSW)