Visiting Riversleigh safely
Riversleigh D Site is the only part of the Riversleigh Australian Fossil Mammal Site open to the public.
By road, D Site is 156km north of the Barkly Highway. Only the first 57km of this route is sealed. Access is unsuitable for conventional vehicles and caravans.
D Site can also be reached via Gregory Downs. The entire 143.5km from Gregory Downs is unsealed. Although a four-wheel-drive vehicle is recommended, this is the only route that is suitable for conventional vehicles and off-road caravans.
Access from the north is via various unsealed routes through Hells Gate or Doomadgee.
The unsealed sections of road can be rough, with patches of bulldust and corrugations. Sections of the roads can also be impassable for extended periods after rain. Always check road conditions before you enter the area.
Unsealed roads in the area provide unpredictable access. It is strongly recommended that visitors take precautionary steps by being well-equipped and self-sufficient, as there is limited communication and mobile phone reception. Contact the Department of Transport and Main Roads to find out about local road conditions and the Bureau of Meteorology for weather reports and forecasts.
During the wet season (October–April) it is recommended that visitors travel by four-wheel-drive and carry an over-supply of food in case of becoming stranded. The wet season can bring dramatic rises in creek levels within a short time and with little warning, cutting off road access. Visitors may find themselves stranded for a number of days.
There is an airstrip at Adels Grove, about 50km from Riversleigh. Contact Adels Grove for details and permission to land.
The information shelter is accessible for wheelchairs.
- Stay on the track and take care on uneven track surfaces.
- Protect yourself from the sun. Wear sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses and a long-sleeved shirt, even on cloudy days. Rest often in the shade.
- Ensure you carry plenty of drinking water.
- Make sure someone knows your destination and route and never leave your vehicle if it breaks down.
Freshwater crocodiles occur in the Gregory River. They can become aggressive and cause injury if disturbed.
- Do not approach or interfere with freshwater crocodiles.
- Take care if swimming.
For more information, please read the guidelines on safety in parks and forests.
Essentials to bring
To ensure you have a safe and enjoyable visit, make sure you bring:
- ample fresh water and food in case of delays caused by bad weather, flat tyres or breakdowns
- two spare tyres in good condition
- UHF radio, if possible (channel one repeater), or satellite phone
- food, camping supplies and vehicle spare parts
- a fuel or gas stove for cooking
Boodjamulla (Lawn Hill) National Park is open 24 hours a day.
Permits are required for all commercial or organised group activities. Contact us for more information.
Camping permits are required and fees apply
Domestic animals are not permitted in the national park.
Climate and weather
Two seasons occur in north-west Queensland, the 'wet' and the 'dry'. During the dry season (May to September) the sky is generally clear and the humidity is low. The wet season (October to April) brings heavy rain and high humidity. January is the wettest month, with an average rainfall of 147mm.
Temperatures in July range from an average minimum of 12°C to a maximum of 28°C. Nights can be cool with temperatures occasionally falling to single figures. During the wet season the temperature can range from 25–45°C.
Fuel and supplies
Fuel and basic supplies are available at Adels Grove, 60km from Riversleigh D Site and 10km from Lawn Hill Gorge. The nearest major centres with a full range of supplies and services are Burketown (275km) and Mount Isa (285km). For more information, see the tourism information links.