Misty Mountains wilderness tracks Tropical North Queensland

Photo credit: © Steven Nowakowski

Navigation skills required

Tracks are remote and can be indistinct in places—all visitors must be experienced and carry maps and navigation equipment. Photo credit: © Steven Nowakowski

Encroaching vegetation

Stinging trees, lawyer vine, guinea grass and giant bramble can encroach on tracks where the canopy has been disturbed—appropriate protective clothing should be worn. Photo credit: © Steven Nowakowski

Things to do

    View from Cannabullen Falls. Photo: Barry Schmith, Queensland Government.

    View from Cannabullen Falls. Photo: Barry Schmith, Queensland Government.

    Walking and mountain biking

    Some of the Misty Mountains wilderness tracks are suitable only for bushwalkers, while others are shared tracks with mountain biking permitted. Each track can be undertaken partially (by going to a point of interest and return), in its entirety (one way or return), or as part of a longer journey (linking two or more tracks together).

    Navigation skills required

    Tracks are remote and can be indistinct in places—all visitors must be experienced and carry maps and navigation equipment. See staying safe for more information.

    Encroaching vegetation

    Stinging trees, lawyer vine, guinea grass and giant bramble can encroach on tracks where the canopy has been disturbed—appropriate protective clothing should be worn. See staying safe for more information.

    Map: Misty Mountains wilderness tracks map (PDF, 918.0KB)

    Key to track grade classifications

    The classification systems are based on Australian Standards. While each track is classified according to its general overall condition, some segments (such as creek crossings and steep sections) may be more difficult. Track conditions will also change following heavy rain.

    Walking track grades
    GradeDescription
    Grade 3 walking trackGrade 3Suitable for most ages and fitness levels. Some bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may have short steep hill sections and a rough surface.
    Grade 4 walking trackGrade 4Bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may be long, rough and very steep. Directional signs may be limited.
    Grade 5 walking trackGrade 5Very experienced bushwalkers with specialised skills, including navigation and emergency first aid. Tracks are likely to be very rough, very steep and unmarked.

    Australian Walking Track Grading System

    Mountain bike track grades
    GradeDescription
    Intermediate grade mountain bike trackIntermediateModerate gradient, obstacles and some steep sections. For skilled mountain bikers.
    Difficult  grade mountain bike trackDifficultFor experienced mountain bikers. Challenging trail. Large, unavoidable obstacles and features. Long steep climbs or descents and loose surfaces.

    International Mountain Bicycling Association difficulty rating system

    Track notes:

    Koolmoon Creek track (orange track)
    TrackTrack notesDistanceGradeTime

    Koolmoon Creek track

    Bally Knob trailhead to Cochable Creek camping area

    The Koolmoon Creek track leads through Tully Falls and Tully Gorge national parks from Little Millstream Falls (near Ravenshoe) to Cochable Creek camping area (north-west of Tully). The track follows the ridges above Koolmoon Creek and features creek crossings, waterholes and panoramic views of Tully River valley and the coast.35.4km one way—Bally Knob trailhead to Cochable Creek camping area

    Grade 5 walking trackGrade 5

    Bicycles prohibitedNot permitted

    Walkers: 3 days one way (approx 8hrs per day)
    Bally Knob

    From Bally Knob trailhead or Tully Falls Road

    Begin at Bally Knob trailhead, in the carpark at Little Millstream Falls. Cross the road and walk to the top of Bally Knob for views of Ravenshoe and the western tablelands. Either return via the same track, or follow a steep descent down to Tully Falls Road. Alternatively, begin at Tully Falls Road, climbing to Bally Knob and return.
    • 8km return from Bally Knob trailhead
    • 5.9km one way from Bally Knob trailhead to Tully Falls Road
    • 3.8km return from Tully Falls Road

    Grade 5 walking trackGrade 5

    Bicycles prohibitedNot permitted

    Walkers:

    • Bally Knob trailhead and return: 3hrs
    • Bally Knob to Tully Falls Road: 2hrs
    • From Tully Falls Road return: 2hrs
    Rhyolite Pinnacle

    From Rhyolite Pinnacle trailhead

    Walk 1.7km and turn right at the junction with the main track. Rhyolite Pinnacle is 4.4km from this junction. However, there is a ‘false summit’ 4km from the junction. After reaching the false summit, continue for a further 460m, following the markers past a timber sign that indicates the final 100m steep ascent to the Rhyolite Pinnacle summit. Return to the main track then either retrace your steps or turn right and walk 1.3km before turning right again to walk 3.7km to Walters Waterhole trailhead, then 3.5km along Tully Falls Road to your starting point.
    • 12.4km return from Rhyolite Pinnacle trailhead
    • 14.8km return via Walters Waterhole trailhead

    Grade 4 walking trackGrade 4

    Bicycles prohibitedNot permitted

    Walkers:

    • Rhyolite Pinnacle trailhead and return: 5.5hrs
    • Rhyolite Pinnacle trailhead via Walters Waterhole trailhead: 5hrs
    Walters Waterhole

    From Walters Waterhole trailhead

    Walk 3.7km and turn right onto the main track. Continue 3.1km to an old bridge with views of Koolmoon Creek and Walters Waterhole. Return via the same track, or continue another 1.1km to Walters Waterhole camping area before turning right and walking 3.4km to Djilgarrin trailhead then 1.5km along Tully Falls Road to your starting point—vehicles use this narrow and winding road so care must be taken.
    • 13.6km return to Walters Waterhole trailhead
    • 12.8km return to Walters Waterhole trailhead via Djilgarrin trailhead

    Grade 4 walking trackGrade 4

    Bicycles prohibitedNot permitted

    Walkers:

    • Walters Waterhole trailhead and return: 4.5hrs
    • Walters Waterhole trailhead via Djilgarrin trailhead: 4hrs
    Djilgarrin trailhead to Cochable Creek camping area

    From Djilgarrin trailhead

    The track involves wide creek crossings and should only be undertaken by experienced bushwalkers. Creeks may be impassable after heavy rain. Because of the steep gradient, walking the opposite way (from Cochable Creek camping area to Djilgarrin) is not recommended. It is not possible to drive or walk between Cardstone Road and Tully Falls Road.15.3km one way (add 4.4km to visit Elizabeth Grant Falls)

    Grade 5 walking trackGrade 5

    Bicycles prohibitedNot permitted

    Walkers: 7hrs one way
    Elizabeth Grant Falls lookout

    From Cochable Creek camping area

    Follow Koolmoon Creek track for 3km, where the track to Elizabeth Grant Falls lookout branches off. Follow this track 2.2km to view the falls cascading 300m to Koolmoon Creek. The falls themselves are not accessible.10.4km return from Cochable Creek camping area

    Grade 3 walking trackGrade 3

    Intermediate grade mountain bike trackIntermediate

    Walkers: 5hrs return

    Mountain bikers: 2–3hrs

    Cannabullen Creek track (blue track)
    TrackTrack notesDistanceGradeTime

    Cannabullen Creek track

    Cochable Creek camping area to Hinson Creek trailhead

    This track follows the steep ridges above Cannabullen and Cochable creeks, with several stream crossings and views to the scenic Whispey Falls.13.6km one way

    Grade 5 walking trackGrade 5

    Bicycles prohibitedNot permitted except as access to Cardwell Range track

    Walkers: 2 days one way (approx 8hrs per day)
    Cardwell Range track (red track)
    TrackTrack notesDistanceGradeTime

    Cardwell Range track

    Cardwell Range trailhead to Hinson Creek trailhead

    This track follows the rolling slopes of the Cardwell Range. You will pass through rainforest typical of the uplands of the eastern tablelands and along the fringes of the Wet Tropics.19km one way (Cardwell Range track 16.9km, Cannabullen Creek track 2.1km)

    Grade 4 walking trackGrade 4

    Intermediate grade mountain bike trackDifficult  grade mountain bike trackIntermediate to difficult—see map (PDF, 918.0KB)

    Walkers: 2 days one way (approx 8hrs per day)

    Mountain bikers: 6–8hrs one way

    Majors Mountain

    From Cardwell Range trailhead

    Follow Cardwell Range track for 2.1km to the turn-off to Majors Mountain lookout where a 900m walkers-only track leads to panoramic views from Majors Mountain.6km return from Cardwell Range trailhead

    Grade 4 walking trackGrade 4

    Bicycles prohibitedNot permitted along the 900m walkers-only track into the lookout—see map (PDF, 918.0KB)

    Walkers: 3hrs return

    Cannabullen Falls

    From Hinson Creek trailhead

    Follow Cannabullen Creek track for 2.1km before joining Cardwell Range track. Follow the main track 2.5km to the turn-off to Cannabullen Falls where a 2.2km track leads you to the top of Cannabullen Falls—stay clear of the cliff edge.13.6km return (Cannabullen Creek track 2.1km, Cardwell Range track 4.7km to the viewing point, and return)

    Grade 4 walking trackGrade 4

    Intermediate grade mountain bike trackDifficult  grade mountain bike trackIntermediate to difficult—see map (PDF, 918.0KB) . Mountain bikes are not permitted all the way to the falls due to an extremely steep section; the final 300m must be walked.

    Walkers: 8hrs return

    Mountain bikers: 3–4hrs return

    Gorrell track (yellow track)
    TrackTrack notesDistanceGradeTime

    Gorrell track

    Gorrell trailhead (eastern) to Gorrell trailhead (western)

    The Gorrell (storm bird) track takes you through the Downey Creek catchment. The Downey Creek area has been used by the Australian army to test the durability of military equipment in tropical conditions. King ferns, bunya pines, epiphytes and giant strangler figs are features of the forest in this area.25.7km one way

    Grade 4 walking trackGrade 4

    Intermediate grade mountain bike trackDifficult  grade mountain bike trackIntermediate to difficult—see map (PDF, 918.0KB)

    Walkers: 2.5 days one way (approx 8hrs per day)

    Mountain bikers: 5–10hrs one way

    McNamee Creek

    From Gorrell trailhead (eastern)

    Venture into the rainforest and visit McNamee Creek near a tranquil waterhole with cascades over rock faces and clear pools.7.2km return from Gorrell trailhead (eastern)

    Grade 3 walking trackGrade 3

    Intermediate grade mountain bike trackIntermediate

    Walkers: 4hrs return

    Mountain bikers: 1–2hrs return

    Downey Creek camping area

    From Gorrell trailhead (western)

    Leave civilisation behind as you venture down the western end of the Gorrell track to the remote Downey Creek camping area.21.8km return from Gorrell trailhead (western)

    Grade 4 walking trackGrade 4

    Intermediate grade mountain bike trackIntermediate

    Walkers: 10hrs return

    Mountain bikers: 4–5hrs return

    Driving

    Map: Misty Mountains wilderness tracks map (PDF, 918.0KB)

    The Misty Mountains road network

    Take a scenic drive through picturesque rainforest between the Palmerston Highway (near Henrietta Creek camping area) and the Ravenshoe–Millaa Millaa scenic drive (Old Palmerston Highway). This drive is made up of a number of unsealed roads: Sutties Gap, Maple Creek, K-tree, Bora Ground and Maalan roads—four-wheel-drive vehicles are recommended for Maple Creek, Bora Ground and Maalan roads. All roads are unsuitable for caravans, motor homes or buses.

    Roads may be slippery when wet. Gates at the entrance to these roads may be locked to stop access during times of extremely wet weather or for road works—check for park alerts.

    Vehicles are not permitted off-road or on internal roads and tracks that are closed for management purposes. Drivers must be licensed and vehicles must be road-registered. For more information, see four-wheel driving.

    These roads are shared with walkers and mountain bikers—be courteous and careful.