Douglas track, Barron Gorge National Park - This track follows one of the first trails linking the Hodgkinson goldfields (west of Mareeba on the Atherton Tableland) with the port of Cairns. In 1876 Native Trooper Sub-inspector Douglas founded a track down through the Barron Gorge valley, mostly following one of the original Bama (local Aboriginal people) walking pads. Later named the Douglas track, it was upgraded for drays and used extensively until the railway line from Cairns to Myola was opened in 1887.... more
Climbing above the northern side of Stoney Creek valley, the track crosses through both rainforest and open woodland. Landmarks including Red Bluff and Glacier Rock provide excellent panoramic views. The 4.7 kilometres McDonalds track links the Douglas track to Wrights lookout. A variety of animals can be seen along the track, including musky rat-kangaroos, skinks, butterflies and birds such as the spotted catbird, black butcherbird, emerald dove, sulphur-crested cockatoo, spangled drongo and southern cassowary.
You need to be fit, experienced and well-prepared to undertake this walk. Tell a responsible person where you're going and when you expect to return. Carry plenty of drinking water.
Distance: 7.8 kilometres one way.
Time: allow 4-6 hours walking time.... less
This one-way track can be walked in either direction. Arrange a pick up at the other end, camp overnight (Speewah) or consider the shorter return option mentioned. There are numerous links to other walks in this area, and it helps if you take a map.
Beware of cassowaries and stinging tree leaves. For your safety, do not walk along or below the railway line.
Some walks may be closed during the wet season, between October and May. Visit between April and October when the weather and track conditions are at their best.
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