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About Mount Walsh

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Getting there and getting around

Access roads into the park are unsealed. Some areas are accessible only by four-wheel-drive. Photo: Ross Naumann.

Access roads into the park are unsealed. Some areas are accessible only by four-wheel-drive. Photo: Ross Naumann.

The northern tip of Mount Walsh National Park is approximately 5km due south of Biggenden township which is 83km west of maryborough and 47km south-west of Childers. There are three entry points into Mount Walsh National Park.

Mount Walsh day use area

Turn off the Maryborough-Biggenden Road 2km east of Biggenden or 80km west of Maryborough. Travel a further 5.3km along the signposted National Park Road to the picnic area.

Waterfall Creek

From Biggenden travel 22km along the Maryborough–Biggenden Road, then turn left onto Innooroolabar Road, travel about 2.5kms and then turn right onto the unsealed Utopia Road. Continue along this road for about 8kms until you reach the Waterfall Creek carpark. Utopia Road is a dirt road that is suitable for conventional vehicles only in dry weather and can be impassable to four-wheel-drive vehicles in the wet.

Coongara Rock

Coongara Rock is only accessible by four-wheel-drive. From Biggenden, travel west 7kms along the Isis Highway, take the left turn onto Lords Road and travel 14kms to Coongara Rock parking area.

Park features

Along the Rock Pool walk, impressive water gums, Tristaniopsis laurina, grow to over 25 metres high and wrap buttressed roots around rocks. Photo: Ross Naumann.

Along the Rock Pool walk, impressive water gums, Tristaniopsis laurina, grow to over 25 metres high and wrap buttressed roots around rocks. Photo: Ross Naumann.

Steep forested slopes, sheltered gullies, rugged ridge lines and mountain areas with spectacular exposed granite outcrops and cliffs support an amazing diversity of vegetation.

Mount Walsh and The Bluff Mount at the northern end of the park are prominent landmarks in the Biggenden area.

The park’s diverse vegetation includes vine forest in sheltered pockets, scrubland and heath on rock pavements and open eucalypt forest and woodland.

Common rainforest trees include tuckeroo, python tree, canary beech and the native witch hazel with its white perfumed flowers. The park is also home to rare and threatened species like the heart-leaved bosistoa (Bosistoa selwynii).

The park is a wildlife refuge for a large variety of wildlife including amphibians, reptiles, mammals and birds. Some rare and threatened species occur here including the powerful owl (Ninox strenua) and the grey goshawk (Accipiter novaehollandiae). Look for peregrine falcons soaring overhead, lace monitors sunning on rocks and saw-shelled tortoises in the creeks.

Camping and accommodation

Remote bush camping

There is no formal camping area at Mount Walsh National Park. Bush camping is available in remote areas of Mount Walsh National Park. Bush camping is only accessible by walking and no facilities are provided.

Camping permits are required and fees apply.

Remote bushwalking requires special skills. You will need to be physically fit, have bushwalking and navigation experience, and have an emergency plan in place with a responsible friend or family member.

Bushwalkers must be well prepared and carry:

  • a topographic map
  • first-aid kit, water and food
  • GPS and compass
  • EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon) recommended

Note: mobile phone reception within the park is unreliable.

For your safety always check the current park alerts to learn of any park conditions that could affect your planned trip or special operations such as planned burns that may be scheduled.

Other accommodation

Glengariff Bush Camp area is a private camping area approximately 4.5km along Lords Road on the way to Coongara Rock. A small range of holiday accommodation is available in Biggenden. For more information see the tourism information links below.

Things to do

Waterfall Creek section features a walk to the Rock pools. Photo: Brian Tighe.

Waterfall Creek section features a walk to the Rock pools. Photo: Brian Tighe.

Cabbage palms, Livistona decora, growing near the rock pools occur here at their most western limit. Photo: Brian Tighe.

Cabbage palms, Livistona decora, growing near the rock pools occur here at their most western limit. Photo: Brian Tighe.

Wedge-tailed eagles and other birds of prey are often seen soaring above the park. Photo: Ross Naumann.

Wedge-tailed eagles and other birds of prey are often seen soaring above the park. Photo: Ross Naumann.

Exploring Mount Walsh

Have a picnic or barbecue below The Bluff at the parks northern end. A shelter shed, toilets, barbecue and tank water are provided in the local authority picnic ground next to the park.

Mount Walsh day-use area

Have a picnic or barbecue below The Bluff Mount—a spectacular granite bluff—at the parks northern end. Sheltered picnic tables, gas barbecues, and non-potable water are provided. The local council provides toilet and shower facilities beside the day-use area. Experienced bush walkers can hike to the summit from here.

Coongara Rock Section

If you have a four-wheel-drive vehicle Coongara Rock is a spectacular place to visit. Featuring the stunning granite monolith of the rock itself surrounded by hoop pine vineforest and eucalypt forests.

Waterfall Creek Section

Sometimes referred to as the Utopia section, this beautiful part of the park is an excellent place to visit. The drive includes approximately 8kms of dirt road which is accessible with conventional vehicles in dry conditions. From the Waterfall Creek car park explore the area on the Rook Pool walk.

Talk to the Ranger before rockclimbing or abseiling in remote parts of the park.

Walking

Most of this rugged park is suitable only for experienced, well-equipped bushwalkers with sound bush skills. The park has limited developed walking tracks.

dangerGranite rocks are slippery when wet. Wear shoes with good grip or avoid walking during or after rain.

Key to track standards

Class 4 track:
  • Distinct track usually with steep exposed inclines or many steps.
  • Caution needed on loose gravel surfaces and exposed natural lookouts.
  • Moderate level of fitness and ankle-supporting footwear required.
Class 5 track:
  • Steep track with irregular surface and loose stones.
  • Requires high level of physical fitness. Considerable exposure to the elements may be experienced.
  • High-quality, ankle-supporting footwear with flexible soles and good grip should be worn.
The Bluff walking track (Class 4-5)

Distance: 3km return
Time: approximately 5hrs due to the steepness of the climb

Details: Access from Mount Walsh day-use area. The first 300m of the track passes through open forest to a rocky creek gully fringed with dry rainforest. Dry rainforests are important remnants of a forest type that has largely been cleared. Distinctive silhouettes of hoop pines emerge above the forest and vines are common in the understorey.

Continue 200m through open eucalypt forest to the treeline for views over the surrounding countryside.

From this point on only experienced bushwalkers should continue to hike on the Class 5 track to the summit of Mount Walsh. On the rocky summit a rich mix of plant species grow. Isolated montane heaths and shrublands are considered a hot-spot for rare and restricted plant species. Acacia pubicosta is rare outside this area, but common here on exposed rock and clifflines.

Rock Pool walk (Class 4)

Distance: 3km return
Time: 1 hour

Details: Access is from the Waterfall Creek section car park.

This pleasant moderate grade walk to the rock pool area—a nice place to picnic, cool off in the shade beside the rock pools or just enjoy nature.

The walk begins in hoop pine dominated dry rainforest and vine thickets fringing a moist gully. Further on, open forests and grassy woodlands feature and merge into shrubby heath along Waterfall Creek.

The creek cascades through a series of rock pools that have potholed into the granite by years of water erosion. Cabbage palms, (Livistona decora), growing near the rock pools occur here at their most western limit. Further along Waterfall Creek, impressive water gums, (Tristaniopsis laurina), grow to over 25m high and wrap buttressed roots around rocks.

Look for wildlife as you walk. You might see wonga pigeons in the dark shaded understorey of the rainforest or catch a glimpse of white-throated treecreepers in the open forest and woodland. Swamp wallabies also use the track and red-necked wallabies often feed around the rainforest fringes.

Caution is required when accessing the creek as rocks may be slippery and unstable.

Coongara Rock track (class 5)

Distance: 600m return
Time: 30mins

Details: Access from Coongara Rock parking area. The short steep 300m track heads directly up to the base of Coongara Rock.

There is no formal track that takes you around the base of the rock or up onto the rock.

Only experienced walkers with good fitness levels should explore beyond this point. Extreme care should be taken when walking on the uneven rocky ground at the base of the rock.

dangerDo not attempt to climb steep and rocky surfaces in wet conditions.

Things to know before you go

Essentials to bring

  • Plan your trip carefully, be self-sufficient and ensure your vehicle is in good condition.
  • Carry enough food, drinking water for your trip.
  • Walkers should take a topographic map and compass when exploring the park.
  • Pack a first-aid kit, sunscreen, insect repellent, sturdy shoes, hat and raincoat.
  • Rubbish bins are not provided. Remove excess packaging when you pack for your trip. Take all recyclables and rubbish with you when you leave.
  • Wear sturdy shoes and protective clothing for sun and bushwalking conditions.

Opening hours

Mount Walsh National Park is open 24 hours a day. For your safety, only walk in the daylight hours.

Pets

Domestic animals are not permitted in Mount Walsh National Park.

Climate and weather

The North Burnett area has a climate that is sub-tropical and sub-humid with rainfall tending to be more concentrated in the months from October to March. Frosts can occur throughout the region, mainly in June to August.

Average temperatures range from 5°C to 32°C, however temperatures as high as 40°C can be experienced over short periods during the summer months.

Fuel and supplies

Fuel and supplies are available at Biggenden and Ban Ban Springs Roadhouse.

For more information see the tourism information links below.

Staying safe

Walking wisely

Choose walks that suit the capabilities of your entire group.

  • Never walk alone.
  • Stay on track and obey all safety and warning signs
  • Be aware the forest is criss-crossed with tracks made by wallabies, bandicoots and brush turkeys. It is easy to get lost if you leave the track.
  • Help can be hours away.
  • Let a responsible person know where you are going and when you expect to return and what to do if you don’t return. Remember to let them know if you change your plans.
  • Plan your walk to avoid walking in the middle of the day during hotter months.
  • Avoid walking during wet weather.
  • Carry enough drinking water and food.
  • Carry a first-aid kit and know how to use it.
  • Wear a hat, sunscreen, insect repellent, comfortable clothes and sturdy shoes with good grip. Carry a mobile phone. Be aware that phone reception is unreliable.
  • For remote walking carry a topographic map, GPS and compass. An EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon) is recommended.
  • Explore in daylight hours only.

Rock pool safety

Slippery surfaces! Wet, smooth granite rocks can be treacherous.

  • Take extreme care around the rock pool as wet feet can make previously dry rock surfaces very slippery.
  • Be careful on slopes leading to the rock pools.
  • Don’t jump or dive into the rock pools.
  • The rock pools have submerged obstacles—rocks and logs—and can be deeper than you think.
  • Supervise children closely.
  • Swimming is not recommended.

See Walk safely for further information when planning bushwalking experiences.

Fire safety

Wildfires are a threat to walkers, campers and the forest community. They can occur without warning, so be aware of and prepared for the dangers.

If a bushfire occurs while you are out walking:

  • Follow the trail away from the fire to the nearest road or creek for refuge.
  • Large logs, a ditch or burnt ground can also provide protection.
  • Avoid areas of heavy fuel, such as deep leaf litter, and stay low to the ground where the air is coolest and contains the least smoke.

In high fire danger conditions, trails and other areas may be closed. It is essential for your safety to follow the instructions on signs in these conditions.

If you see a bushfire, please alert a Ranger or call Firecomm on 1800 354 621.

In an emergency

In case of accident or other emergency please:

  • call 000 or
  • if you have difficulty connecting to 000 from your mobile phone: try 112
  • advise the location and nature of the emergency
  • stay on the phone until you are told to hang up.

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

Looking after the park

Staghorns growing along the creek are just one of the many species protected in Mount Walsh National Park. Photo: Brian Tighe.

Staghorns growing along the creek are just one of the many species protected in Mount Walsh National Park. Photo: Brian Tighe.

Everything in the park (living or dead) is protected including wildflowers, wildlife and even rocks and timber. Help care for Mount Walsh National Park by:

  • Storing food away from foraging wildlife and not feeding wildlife—human food can harm wildlife and cause some animals to become aggressive.
  • Taking your rubbish away for appropriate disposal—do not bury rubbish in the park.
  • For toileting dig a pit toilet at least 50cm deep and 100m from water courses.
  • Not using soaps in the waterways to prevent pollution.
  • Avoid driving on firetrails and lesser tracks in wet conditions as this can cause considerable damage to them.

See the guidelines on caring for parks and forests for more information about protecting our environment and heritage in parks.

Park management

 Mount Walsh National Park was first gazetted in July 1947 and is managed by the Department of National Parks, Recreation, Sports and Racing under the Nature Conservation Act 1992.

Tourism information links

www.visitfrasercoast.info

Hervey Bay Visitor Information Centre

www.visitherveybay.info
Cnr Hervey bay and Urraween Road, Hervey Bay
Phone: 1800 811 728

Maryborough Fraser Island Visitor Information Centre

www.frasercoast.qld.gov.au
City Hall, Kent Street,
Maryborough
Phone: 1800 214 789

Tiaro Craft Cottage Inc and Visitor Information Centre

www.ourfrasercoast.com.au
Mayne Street, Tiaro
Phone: 07 4129 2599

Bundaberg Region

Bundaberg West Visitor Information Centre

www.bundabergregion.org
Bourbong Street, Bundaberg
Phone: 1300 722 099

Childers Visitor Information Centre

www.bundaberg.qld.gov.au
Palace Memorial Building,
72 Churchill Street, Childers
Phone: 07 4130 4660

Gin Gin Visitor Information Centre

www.bundabergregion.info
Mulgrave Street, Gin Gin
Phone: 1300 722 099

RM Williams Australian Bush
Learning and Visitor Information Centre

www.rmwilliamscentre.com.au
Burnett Highway, Eidsvold
Phone: 1300 696 272

For tourism information for all regions in Queensland see Queensland Holidays.

Further information

Contact us

Last updated
19 August 2013