Site of the World's Tallest Tree – Thorpdale, Australia - Atlas Obscura

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Site of the World's Tallest Tree

Thorpdale, Australia

The massive mountain ash that once stood at this site was cut down in an effort to prove that it was, indeed, the tallest of its kind. 


In Thorpdale, a small memorial commemorates a mountain ash that grew to 114 meters in height. Unfortunately, the tree itself no longer stands here. In 1884, to find out exactly how tall it was, the property owner decided to chop it down so that he and his brother could officially measure it.

The tree grew on the property of Bill Cornthwaite. Known as the Thorpdale Tree or the Cornthwaite Tree, it remains the tallest Eucalyptus regnans ever measured. The trunk was 114.3 meters (375 feet) when felled in 1884. Bill’s brother George, a government surveyor, measured the tree, giving it official status over a similar tree in the Otway’s region of the state that was measured and unofficially recorded as being slightly taller.

Now all that remains is a sign, unveiled in 1976. Over time there have been several conditions added to the phrase, “the site of the world’s tallest tree.” It is now referred to as “the site of the world’s tallest flowering tree.”

Since European settlement, enormous areas of mountain ash forest have been cleared throughout the state of Victoria. With no sign of the actual tree to be seen at the site. Some very impressive, standing and still-growing examples of mountain ash and large tree ferns can be found at the nearby Tarra-Bulga National Park.

Know Before You Go

Approximately one kilometer east on McDonalds track off the Thorpdale Rd

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May 3, 2023

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