Visiting Smithfield safely
Smithfield Conservation Park is approximately 16km north of Cairns via the Captain Cook Highway.
McGregor Road entrance (trailhead)
This is the primary entrance to Smithfield Conservation Park and the only entrance with a car park. From Cairns, travel north along the Captain Cook Highway for 16km and turn left at the McGregor Road roundabout near James Cook University. Drive 1km along McGregor Road, past the university, to the Smithfield Conservation Park car park. This entrance provides access to the start of the ‘easy’ mountain-bike trails.
Mountain biking safety guidelines
- Wear appropriate safety gear—a helmet approved to Australian Standards (AS 2063), gloves and cycling glasses.
- Stay on formed trails and take care on loose and uneven surfaces especially when wet as trail conditions are subject to change.
- Select the appropriate trail grade for your skills and experience.
- Inform someone of your itinerary including start and finishing times.
- Ride at precautionary speeds—always expect that walkers or mountain bikers may be around the next corner.
- Give way to walkers—slow down, establish communication, be prepared to stop if necessary, and pass walkers at a slow speed.
- Follow the International Mountain Bicycling Association rules of the trail.
- In an emergency phone Triple Zero (000). If you have difficulty connecting to Triple Zero (000) from your mobile phone, try dialling 112.
For more information, please read the guidelines on safety in parks and forests.
Essentials to bring
To ensure a safe and enjoyable visit always bring:
- a hat, sunscreen, sunglasses and insect repellent
- sturdy, reliable footwear
- drinking water
- rubbish bags
- appropriate safety gear for mountain-bike riding—a helmet approved to Australian Standards (AS 2063) and protective gloves and cycling glasses.
Smithfield Conservation Park is open 24hrs a day but riding at night is not recommended.
Permits and fees
Permits may be required for commercial or organised group activities. View permits and fees for further information.
Dogs on leads are permitted on all shared access trails. Dogs are not permitted within the declared Restricted Access Area . All other domestic animals are not permitted in the conservation park.
Climate and weather
Smithfield Conservation Park has a tropical climate. In summer, maximum temperatures range from 27°C to 38°C with high humidity. Between December and April there are frequent heavy downpours of rain and the possibility of thunderstorms and tropical cyclones.
Although you can visit the park all year round, the cooler drier months of the year (from May to September) are the best times to visit. The weather is pleasantly warm with reduced humidity, lower rainfall and average maximum temperatures of 26°C.
For more information see the Bureau of Meterology.
Fuel and supplies
Fuel and supplies are available nearby at Smithfield, Palm Cove and Cairns.
For more information see the tourism information links.
- Temporary closure: Stingers (the Nationals) mountain bike track, Smithfield Conservation Park 24 March to 30 November 2022
- World Cup Downhill track maintenance and event: Smithfield Conservation Park 25 July to 14 October 2022