Little Desert National Park is a great place for camping and is noted for its sandy ridges and springtime wildflower displays. It is the second-largest national park in Victoria. This area was ignored during the European settlement of the Wimmera. The first reserve was created in 1955 to protect the Mallee Fowl and the park was declared in 1968.
Despite its name, the dry hot summers and sandy soil, this is a desert in name only. The park receives 400 mm of rainfall per annum (mostly in winter) and supports a range of fauna and 670 plant species. With its scrubby woodland of yellow and red gum, as well as swamps and clay flats of bull-oak and melaleuca, it represents a remnant of the Wimmera's pre-colonial vegetation. It is regularly by scientists and botanists for over fifty years, particularly in September and October.
The park is essentially divided into three sections. The road to Goroke and Edenhope, which heads south off the highway just east of Kaniva, divides the western and middle sections of the park. Any exploration off this road will require a 4WD. Just east of the road is Broughton's Waterhole which features a bush camping ground. Also close by is Mt Turner, Sister Hills and the Crater. Heading back to the highway is the historic Bill's Gully Hall and Reserve featuring small waterhole and toilets. Merwyn Swamp is nearby and ideal for kayaking when there is water. Yanipy Nature Reserve off Kaniva Edenhope Rd, is also a great spot for orchids and bush camping. The far west section includes Mooree Reserve and Mount Moffat. For those on limited time or without a 4WD, the Billyho Bushwalk will give a good indication of the area.
This is a fragile environment and it warrants our care in every way. Please stick to the designated tracks and leave no trace to minimise your impact. Plan ahead and prepare. Dispose of waste correctly, Respect the wildlife. Be considerate of other visitors.
Caution: 4WD only. Tracks are un-maintained, tracks include deep sand and can be boggy in places. There are no rescue services that operate. Please be prepared and travel with another vehicle. 4WD info.