The Jardwadjali (pronounced Yard-wa-jali) people lived in the northern and western Gariwerd ranges, and on the Wimmera Plains to the west. The Jardwadjali language shares 90 percent common vocabulary with Djab wurrung. Sub-dialects include Jagwadjali, Mardidjali, and Nundadjali.
The Jardwadjali people have lived in the area for up to 30,000 to 40,000 years, certainly with evidence of occupation in Gariwerd many thousands of years before the last ice-age. One site in the Victoria Range (Billawin Range) has been dated from 22,000 years ago.
In 1989 there was a proposal by Victorian Minister for Tourism, to rename many geographical place names associated with aboriginal heritage in the area. There was much opposition to this proposal by European descendants. The Brambuk centre, representing five aboriginal communities, advocated a dual name for the main area: Gariwerd/Grampians.
Some of the changes included:
- Grampians to Gariwerd (mountain range)
- Mount Zero to Mura Mura (little hill)
- Hall’s Gap to Budja Budja
The Brambuk National Park and Cultural Centre in Halls Gap is owned and managed by Jardwadjali and Djab Wurrung people from five Aboriginal communities with historic links to the Gariwerd-Grampians ranges and the surrounding plains.