Pyrenees Shire is located in the Central West of Victoria, about 130 kilometres Northwest of Melbourne and comprises an area of nearly 3,500 square kilometres.
The region of Pyrenees falls within the boundaries of four Aboriginal Traditional Custodians including the Wadawurrung (towards the South and East of the Shire), Dja Dja Wurrung (towards the Northeast of the Shire), Djab Wurrung (towards the Northwest of the Shire) and Wotjobaluk (in a Northwest corner). A further Native Title Claim by the Eastern Maar is under review.
In the early 1840s most of the land throughout the Shire had been taken up by pastoral squatters. The greatest proportion of the old Avoca Shire was held by James Cameron who occupied the land to the west of the Pyrenees ranges and William Stawell and his cousin Leslie Foster who held the land in the east.
These arrangements had followed the pattern of Aboriginal occupation with the Pyrenees providing a natural dividing line for the Dja Dja Wurrung to the east and the Djab Wurrung to the south west.