Barron Gorge National Park extends from the coastal lowlands to the elevated regions of the Atherton Tableland and features rugged mountain scenery, tropical rainforests, diverse wildlife and a fascinating history. The park lies within the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area.
Smiths track is one of the major historical route linking the inland Hodgkinson and Palmer goldfields with the coast. In 1876 miner and mule team packer, William Smith, founder of the Cairns suburb of Smithfield, marked this route up the southern side of Stoney Creek valley. Smith mostly followed Bama walking pads and Smiths track was were well used, carrying up to 300 pack-horses at one time. The track features magnificent stands of tall rainforest along with open woodlands and grasslands on the higher more exposed ridges. Tobys lookout provides extensive views of Barron Gorge and the coastal lowlands. Birds, including spotted catbirds, orioles, sulphur-crested cockatoos, pheasant coucals and spangled drongos can be seen or heard as you walk the track.... more
Tell someone where you are going and when you expect to return. Stay on the walking track and stay clear of steep rock faces. Take care on uneven, slippery surfaces.
Grade: easy to very difficult.
Distance: 8.6 kilometres.
Time: allow 7-9 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.
The toilets and shower facilities at Speewah campground are wheelchair accessible. Assistance may be required in grassy areas of the campground.
How To Get There
The Smiths track begins in the Speewah Conservation Park. From Cairns, travel north along the Captain Cook Highway. Follow the Kuranda signs and turn onto the Kennedy Highway, which winds up the coastal mountain range. Continue past the Kuranda turn-off for 6.5 kilometres. Turn left onto Speewah Road and follow the signs for 5.2 kilometres. A steep, winding road leads through Speewah township to the conservation park. Some sections of this road may be in poor condition during the wet season (December to April). Speewah Road is not suitable for caravans.
Camping fees apply.
From the Speewah end: Turn left off the Kennedy Highway at Douglas Track Road (to Speewah). Take the next right onto Speewah Road and drive to Stoney Creek Road. Follow Stoney Creek Road past Kelly Road and across a small bridge. Shortly after the bridge turn left and follow the road to the National Park carpark. The track entrance is to your right. Pick up from the Kamerunga (Cairns) end: Drive to Kamerunga and turn off to Stoney Creek and the Rainforest Estate. Follow the road up the valley. You will see a signpost for the start of Smiths track on your left near the scout hut before you reach Rainforest Estate.
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