Wallaman Falls Section, Wet Tropics Great Walk Tropical North Queensland | Townsville

Photo credit: Photo: Robert Ashdown © Qld Govt

Walking

    There are a number of creek crossings along the Wet Tropics Great Walk. Photo: Queensland Government.

    There are a number of creek crossings along the Wet Tropics Great Walk. Photo: Queensland Government.

    Walking options

    There are three walking tracks in the Wallaman Falls Section of the Wet Tropics Great Walk. Each track has been given a language name by the Traditional Owners, the Warrgamaygan Aboriginal people.

    Buujan Quiinbiira walk — 37.5km one way (allow 2 days) Grade: Difficult

    The Buujan Quiinbiira (Boo-jun quin bee-rr-ar) walk starts at Wallaman Falls and winds its way through open forests and past palm-filled gullies before crossing the Herbert River to reach the Yamanie pick-up point.

    Day 1 Wallaman Falls to Pack Trail campsite

    Day 2 Pack Trail campsite to Yamanie turn-off

    Yamanie-turnoff to Yamanie pick-up point

    Djagany (goanna) walk — 56.8km one way (allow 3 days) Grade: Difficult

    Starting at Wallaman Falls, the Djagany (Jar-gar-nee) walk follows an old forestry track through she-oaks, open forest and rainforest. Cool, tranquil creek crossings provide a welcome respite from the heat on your way to the Henrietta gate pick-up point.

    Day 1 Wallaman Falls to Pack Trail campsite

    Day 2 Pack Trail campsite to Yamanie turn-off

    Yamanie turn-off to Stony Creek campsite

    Day 3 Stony Creek campsite to Henrietta gate pick-up point

    Gugigugi (butterfly) walk — 37.5km one way (allow 2 days) Grade: Difficult

    The Gugigugi (Goo-ji-goo-ji) walk starts at the Henrietta gate pick-up point travelling through open forest and lush creek crossings. This walk crosses the Herbert River before reaching the Yamanie pick-up point.

    Day 1 Henrietta gate pick-up point to Stony Creek campsite (reverse track notes below)

    Day 2 Stony Creek campsite to Yamanie turn-off (reverse track notes below)

    Yamanie turn-off to Yamanie pick-up point.

    Track notes

    The track notes are written from the Wallaman Falls end. Reverse the notes if starting from either Henrietta gate or Yamanie pick-up points.

    Wallaman Falls to Pack Trail campsite — 23.3km (allow 1 day)

    From Wallaman Falls, follow an old forestry track through a range of landscapes including she-oak dominated country, open forest and rainforest.

    From the Wet Tropics Great Walk information shelter, wander down the road and across the Stony Creek bridge to the start of the walk.

    Small gullies teeming with ferns and palms are scattered throughout the forest. If you look carefully, you might catch a glimpse of the brilliant blue Ulysses butterflies fluttering through gullies or forest kingfishers perched on branches in the shade.

    About 5km along the track you will come to a large clearing. This was once a forestry quarry. The department is rehabilitating the area. In time this scar on the landscape will disappear.

    The remains of an old forestry camp can be seen a further 7.2km down the track. For about 10 years this camp was home to the road gangs, forestry officers and timber cutters, who worked here. Just past the forestry camp is Garrawalt Creek, a perfect spot to stop for lunch. Spend a moment peering into the rock pools and be rewarded with a glimpse of a platypus or hear the plop of a water dragon seeking refuge in the stream.

    After lunch, you will cross over three more creeks. Flagstone Creek is the last creek crossing for nearly 14km, so fill up your water containers. Continue on a further 4.4km to the Pack Trail campsite, your home for the night.

    Pack Trail campsite to Yamanie turn-off — 4.7km (allow 3–4hrs)

    After a peaceful night sleeping under the stars this morning’s walk will take you back in time.

    Re-live the past by walking part of the Dalrymple Track forged in the 1860s by George Dalrymple and his team. The track provided an essential route for bullock teams hauling basic supplies from the Port of Cardwell to the frontier homesteads.

    Be prepared for a steep decent on unstable surfaces. Part way down the steep hill, there is a break in the canopy. Enjoy the sensational views across the Herbert River Valley.

    At the base of the hill you will pass through a big scrubby gully.

    Note: Not far past this point, those doing the Buujan Quiinbiira walk will need to turn-off to the Yamanie pick-up point, at the signpost. Refer to the track notes for the Yamanie turn-off to Yamanie pick-up point for the final section of the Buujan Quiinbiirra walk.

    Yamanie turn-off to Stony Creek campsite — 9.2km (allow 2.5–3.5hrs)

    Note: Visitors walking the Djagany and Gugigugi walks continue on through the open forest towards Stony Creek.

    About 1.8km along the track, keep watch for a grove of cycads. These ancient plants were part of the landscape when dinosaurs roamed the land. They were the dominant form of vegetation about 193–136 million years ago and have changed very little since that time.

    Garrawalt Creek is only another 3km away. This is a great place to stop for lunch or just for a rest under a shady tree. The creeks along this part of the walk run into the Herbert River which is not far from the track. Crocodiles can be found in the Herbert River. Be aware! You are now in croc country.

    Estuarine or saltwater crocodiles are an important part of north Queensland’s wetlands, freshwater and marine areas. They are one of the largest predators in these habitats and help to maintain the overall health and balance of these ecosystems. They live mainly in the tidal reaches of rivers, as well as in freshwater lagoons, swamps and waterways — up to hundreds of kilometres from the sea. Crocodiles are most active at night. Remember to be croc wise in croc country.

    Continue on for another 4.4km till you reach the Stony Creek campsite. Set up camp, and enjoy a well-earned rest for the night.

    Stony Creek campsite to Henrietta gate pick-up point — 19.6km (allow 1 day)

    Fill your water bottles before leaving the campsite. Water is not available for nearly 13km.

    As you wander the track, you will see that some areas are not the pristine natural environments you expect to find in a national park. Despite the presence of pest plants and animals, this area is special.

    Previously, most of the area was used for grazing. It was purchased by the Queensland Government in 1994, and is now part of Girringun National Park. The area is protected habitat for the endangered mahogany glider and work is underway to control the spread of pest plants and remove pest animals.

    Henrietta Creek is the ideal spot to stop for lunch and to fill your water bottles before tackling the last section of the track. Another 6km and you will pass Lemon Tree Gully, aptly named for the lemon tree that still bears fruit.

    Only 5.2km of walking remains until you reach the Henrietta gate and your pick-up point.

    Yamanie turn-off to Yamanie pick-up point — 9.5km (allow 2.5–3.5hrs)

    Enjoy a pleasant walk through open forest, along the high banks of the Herbert River. Keep your eyes and ears open for resident wildlife. This section of track is marked with trail markers. Listen for the noisy chatter of scaly-breasted lorikeets or the deep, gruff call of the wompoo fruit-dove.

    Scattered throughout the open forest are small gullies filled with riparian rainforest including large fig trees. The transformation in the vegetation is sudden, affected by changes in soil quality and moisture levels.

    Spend a moment peering into the river and be rewarded with a glimpse of a platypus. Freshwater turtles can be seen basking on logs or peeking through the surface of the water. The river is also home to many different fish such as barramundi and mangrove jack.

    In a big, long, deep waterhole in the Herbert River, you will find another of the locals — a large estuarine crocodile took up residence here years ago. Remember to be croc wise in croc country and only cross the river where marked.

    Fishing

    Fishing is permitted in Girringun National Park. Size, take and possession limits may apply. Contact Agriculture and Fisheries for further information. Always remember to be croc wise in croc country.

    The Herbert River is home to estuarine crocodiles. Photo: Queensland Government

    The Herbert River is home to estuarine crocodiles. Photo: Queensland Government

    Walk safely

    Remember to tell a responsible person where you are going and when you expect to return. Let them know your route and contact them on your return. Have a contingency plan in place if you fail to contact them by the agreed time. If you change your plans, inform them.

    • Never walk alone. Small groups of four are ideal.
    • Carry adequate drinking water. Treat water collected from creeks and rivers and know how to be croc wise in croc country.
    • Protect yourself from the sun. Wear sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses and a long-sleeved shirt, even on cloudy days.
    • Creek beds and rocky surfaces can be slippery. Always cross where the water is shallowest.
    • Wear insect repellent, clothing and shoes to protect yourself from stings, scratches and bites.
    • You may encounter feral cattle and pigs along the walk. Never startle or approach these animals and ensure they have a clear path to the scrub.
    • Arrive at your camp well before dark. For your safety do not walk at night.

    Be weather-aware

    To ensure your walk is comfortable, be prepared for wet weather. After rain, creeks and rivers along the Great Walk may flood. Always check the weather forecast before you begin your walk. Contact the Bureau of Meteorology for the latest weather reports.

    Snake safety

    Watch out for snakes. Though rarely seen, they are always around. If you do see a snake, calmly walk away without disturbing it. Some snakes are more active at night, so always use a torch, wear shoes and watch where you walk. Remember, all native wildlife, including snakes are protected.

    Be croc wise

    Be aware that estuarine crocodiles may be encountered in waterholes, creeks and rivers along the Great Walk. Crocodiles can be dangerous. Do not take unnecessary risks and remember to be croc wise in croc country.

    Take the opportunity to observe crocodiles from a distance. Stay well back from crocodiles or croc-slide marks. If you are approached by a crocodile move away from the animal.

    Creek safety

    Along the Great Walk you will need to cross creeks or access water from them. To ensure a safe and enjoyable walk, always follow these guidelines.

    • Water should only be collected from shallow, flowing rapids. Treat water before drinking.
    • Only cross the river at shallow areas. Be careful, rocks may be algae covered and extremely slippery.
    • Wear sturdy shoes when crossing. Sharp rocks can cause discomfort and bullrouts (freshwater stonefish) live in the river. If stung, seek medical attention.

    In case of emergency

    In the event of an emergency, communication equipment is vital. You should carry at least one form of communication equipment. Many options are available such as mobile phones, satellite phones, personal EPIRBs (emergency position indicating radio beacons) and UHF radios.

    Satellite phones and EPIRBs are the most effective emergency communication equipment in remote areas.

    Mobile phone coverage is very limited and should not be relied upon as the only form of emergency communication. In case of an emergency, if network coverage is available, dial 000 on your charged mobile phone. If 000 does not work, you can dial 112.

    Always follow your progress on a map. All creeks are signed along the track and marked on your trail guide. This can help you to accurately pinpoint your location.

    Carry a good first-aid kit and know how to apply first aid. It may save someone’s life.

    For more information, please read the guidelines on safety in parks and forests.

    Walk softly

    We need your help to protect this area and keep it in its natural state. Please aim to leave no trace.

    • Never chase, scare or feed animals.
    • Take all rubbish home with you including food scraps.
    • Use fuel stoves only. Open fires are not permitted — they may cause wildfires and degrade the environment.
    • Always stay on the track. Never cut corners or create new tracks.
    • Wash at least 50m from creeks and rivers. Use gritty sand, hot water and a scourer instead of soap to clean dishes. Avoid allowing soap, detergents, toothpaste and cosmetics to come into contact with water resources.
    • Where toilets are not provided use a trowel to bury toilet waste and biodegradable paper. Dig a 15cm deep hole at least 100m away from watercourses and tracks. Take all sanitary items with you as they do not decompose.

    Remember, this is a national park — everything is protected.

    See caring for parks for more information about protecting our environment and heritage in parks.

    • There are currently no park alerts for this park.