Black Mountain Road

Black Mountain Road


There are lots of small creeks to cross, all of which have concrete bridges. You can still see a few of the original old log bridge crossings. You may find old, overgrown logging and telecom tracks that lead into the rainforest in several locations along the route, both before and after the pine plantation. These are wonderful quick strolls, and can often spot cassowaries along these trails. There are several unofficial hiking tracks off Black Mountain Road that leads to the beaches of Clifton and Kewarra as well as along the ridge to Saddle Mountain. These routes are unmaintained and navigate the dense rainforest. Navigation can be extremely difficult. The Twin Bridges side track, where the bridge burned many years ago, is now solely open to hikers and mountain bikers. Black Mountain Road or other forestry tracks access The Quaid Road, which is gated at both ends. From Wangetti on the coast (Cook Highway) to the Mulligan Highway just south of Mount Molloy at the dam. It was built without permission on Southedge Station in the 1980s by George Quaid. Quaid was attempting to market it as a location for a multi-function polis.

Wangetti Road

The Wangetti Road descends the steep slopes of the MacAlister Range, it has suffered substantially from erosion due to improper engineering. However, if you continue driving from the intersection with Black Mountain Road to the area's easternmost point, a footpath leading to Hartleys Creek Falls may be found near the base of the range near Wangetti. Hartleys Creek Falls has a top-notch swimming hole below. The right turn onto Black Mountain Road is a straightforward drive to reach the southern starting point; it is 20 minutes from Smithfield Shops along Kuranda Road and 500 metres from the bridge to cross the Barron River up near Kuranda. After crossing a bridge into the tree-logging region, the first kilometres of the route are sealed roads and residential areas. Watch out for blind bends and approaching trucks over this 20-kilometre stretch.

Kuranda to Julatten

Next on the track is a gentle gradient. The 30 km of rocky and gravel roads are a lot of fun to drive in the morning. You will be dropped off at the turning with 3 kilometres to Mossman and 76 kilometres to Cairns. If you want to test out any modifications you have made to your four-wheel drive, this is a good track to use. It runs from Kuranda to Julatten, and if you have the time and would rather go on a track than a freeway, you may include it in your journey up north (or back down south). You do need high clearance, but not always four-wheel drive, as the Black Mt Road is more like a gravel road with some uneven sections. It passes through several pine plantations and tropical rainforests, crosses a few creeks with little bridges, enters Kuranda National Park, and then leaves it.

The Bump Track

The Bump Track, one of Cape York's best bushwalks, is also nearby. The notorious Bump Track, created by Christie Palmeston when the Hodgkinson goldfields were fed from Pt. Douglas prior to the formation of Cairns, is located close to the Julatten end. The Bump Track is a fantastic three-hour walk to the seaside that passes through various woodland types, offers breathtaking views, and includes a detour to the charming Mowbray Falls. It is wide and accessible, yet in certain places it is steep. The Bump was mined in case of invasion after World War II, but instead of deactivating the mines, they were detonated after the war. Mountain bikers are welcome to use it, and it is a part of the national park. You can continue on the interior route north from Julatten by turning left towards Mount Molloy.Also in the area is Big Mowbray Falls, Harris Peak, and Pease Lookout, if you like hiking.

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