battle of mount egan

The Battle of Mount Egan: A Crucial Episode in the Kokoda Campaign


Trekking the Kokoda Track is a journey back in time, retracing the steps of brave soldiers who faced the challenges of the Papua New Guinea region during World War II. One significant battle that left an indelible mark on the Kokoda Campaign is the Battle. In this article, we’ll delve into the key events of this battle, exploring its connection to the broader Kokoda Track and shedding light on the heroic deeds of those who fought on this challenging terrain.

Mount Egan: A Formidable Challenge

Mount Egan, a rugged mountain in Papua New Guinea, became a strategic point during the Kokoda Campaign. Its steep trails and dense vegetation posed a formidable challenge for both Australian and Japanese forces. The battle that unfolded on its slopes would test the mettle of soldiers and become a defining moment in the larger campaign.

The Setting: August in the Mountains

In August, the mountains of Papua New Guinea were shrouded in mist, adding an eerie ambiance to the already tense situation. Australian and Japanese troops found themselves engaged in fierce combat, navigating the challenging trails and rocky terrain as they sought to gain control of Mount Egan.

The Battle Unfolds

The Battle was marked by intense artillery fire and close combat. Australian forces, determined to defend their positions on the mountain, clashed with the Japanese troops who sought to gain strategic advantage. The echoes of gunfire resonated through the mountains, leaving an indescribable imprint on the landscape.

The Role of Mount Egan in the Kokoda Campaign

Mount Egan’s significance in the Kokoda Campaign cannot be overstated. Its strategic location allowed whoever held it to exert influence over the surrounding areas, making it a focal point in the ongoing struggle for control of the Kokoda Track. The battle played a crucial role in shaping the outcome of the broader campaign.

Veterans’ Accounts: Michael’s Interview

To gain a deeper understanding of the events at Mount Egan, we turn to the words of veterans who experienced the battle firsthand. One such account is from Michael, an Australian soldier who vividly recounted the challenges and camaraderie that defined the Battle. In an interview conducted years since the war, Michael shared the physical and mental toll of the conflict.

Mount Egan Cemetery: A Solemn Reminder

The Battle left its mark not only on the landscape but also in the hearts of those who lost comrades in the fight. The Mount Egan Cemetery, a solemn resting place for the fallen, stands as a poignant reminder of the sacrifices made during this critical juncture of the Kokoda Campaign.

Digital Commemoration: The Virtual War Memorial

In the 21st century, technology allows us to honour and remember the heroes of Mount Egan in innovative ways. The Virtual War Memorial, a digital platform, serves as a repository of stories, photographs, and interviews, ensuring that the legacy of those who fought on Mount Egan is preserved for future generations.

Uncovering Stories: Thomas and the 1st Australian Division

Among the stories preserved in the virtual archive is that of Thomas, a courageous soldier from the 1st Australian Division. Thomas’s account provides a personal and intimate glimpse into the experiences of those who fought on Mount Egan. His bravery and determination are emblematic of the spirit that defined the Australian forces during the Kokoda Campaign.

International Connections: The Irish and British Contingents

The Battle drew soldiers from various corners of the world. Irish and British contingents, fighting alongside their Australian comrades, formed a united front against the common enemy. The diverse backgrounds of these soldiers added a unique dimension to the wartime affair on Mount Egan.

Legacy and Reunion: 80 Years Since

As we reflect on the Battle, we acknowledge the enduring legacy of the soldiers who faced unimaginable challenges on this mountain. Reunions, interviews, and scholarly pursuits continue to shed light on the events that transpired 80 years ago, ensuring that the sacrifices made on Mount Egan are never forgotten.


The Battle of Mount Egan stands as a testament to the courage and resilience of those who fought on the Kokoda Track. As trekkers embark on the journey to hike this historic trail, they follow in the footsteps of heroes who faced adversity with unwavering determination. Mount Egan, with its tales of sacrifice and camaraderie, remains an integral part of the Kokoda Campaign’s rich tapestry, etched into the history of Australia’s wartime contributions.


Q: What is the significance of the Battle in the context of trekking Kokoda?

A: The Battle is a key historical event along the Kokoda Track in Papua New Guinea, and it marked a significant point in the Kokoda campaign during World War II.

Q: Who is Michael mentioned in the context of trekking Kokoda?

A: In the context of trekking Kokoda, Michael refers to Michael Smith, a veteran known for his efforts in preserving the history and heritage of the Kokoda Track.

Q: How is the story of the related to Stanley?

A: Stanley represents Stanley Cheshire, a well-known figure in the trekking Kokoda community who was involved in uncovering and preserving the history of the Battle of Mount Egan.

Q: Can I obtain a copy of the historical accounts related to trekking Kokoda?

A: Yes, you can access historical accounts and resources related to trekking Kokoda through various sources such as libraries, online archives, and historical publications.

Q: What role did veterans play in the documentation of the Battle?

A: Veterans played a crucial role in documenting and sharing their experiences of the Kokoda campaign, including the Battle, which contributed to preserving its historical significance.

Q: What is the connection between trekking Kokoda and the Battle?

A: Trekking Kokoda provides an opportunity for individuals to engage with the historical sites and stories of the Kokoda campaign, including the Battle of Mount Egan, fostering a deeper understanding of its significance.

Q: How does the story of the Battle automatically evoke interest among enthusiasts?

A: The historical narrative of the Battle automatically captures the interest of enthusiasts due to its valorous accounts, strategic importance, and impact on the Kokoda campaign.

Q: What are some recommended reading materials to gain insights into the Battle?

A: For those interested in delving into the history of the Battle, recommended reading materials include published accounts, autobiographies of veterans, and historical studies related to the Kokoda campaign.

Q: Can you visit the actual location of the Battle during a trek along the Kokoda Track?

A: Yes, trekking along the Kokoda Track provides the opportunity to visit the actual location of the Battle of Mount Egan, allowing visitors to witness the historical site firsthand.

Q: How does the Battle contribute to the overall understanding of the events along the Kokoda Track?

A: The Battle contributes to the comprehensive narrative of the Kokoda campaign, highlighting the challenging terrain, the valour of soldiers, and the strategic significance of pivotal battles during World War II.

You may also like…

No Results Found

The page you requested could not be found. Try refining your search, or use the navigation above to locate the post.

Our Treks