Nice hikes to see the rainforest? (Cairns/Townsville area)

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Nice hikes to see the rainforest? (Cairns/Townsville area)

Postby Araucaria » Tue 21 May, 2019 3:25 pm

Hi,
We've recently moved to Melbourne for one year and would love to see some of the Australian landscape while we're here. We've recently done two great hikes in Tasmania (incredible place!) and are heading to the Larapinta Trail in July. However, we'd also love to see the rainforest and the coral reef, and according to our friend the best place to see these two things is the Cairns/Townsville area. Could any of you recommend some nice hikes around there? Our priorities are:
- overnight or multiday hikes
- beautiful rainforest, beach and/or mountain views
- not crowded
- can be challenging, but no serious bushwhacking please (I'm not very fond of ants, spiders, leeches etc.)

Also:
- if possible, accessible by public transport or shuttle bus companies (we'd prefer not to rent a car if we can avoid it - can we?)
- we'd rather stay in one area so that we don't have to drive/take a bus to a new place every day (unless we'd really miss out on something)

I've read some travel blogs of course, but they weren't really written with hikers in mind. Any recommendations would be most welcome!

Cheers
Janka
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Re: Nice hikes to see the rainforest? (Cairns/Townsville are

Postby ofuros » Tue 21 May, 2019 3:54 pm

Just to get you started.
I'm slightly biased :wink: ...above Cairns, best during the cool season. Bus to Lions Den, Rossville then walk under 4km to HomeRule riverside campsite, starting point for walk.
https://ofuros.exposure.co/cedar-bay-track

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Last edited by ofuros on Thu 23 May, 2019 10:07 am, edited 2 times in total.
Mountains view are good for my soul...& getting to them is good for my waistline !
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Re: Nice hikes to see the rainforest? (Cairns/Townsville are

Postby rowdy » Tue 21 May, 2019 4:33 pm

There's the Thorsborne Trail on Hinchinbrook Island roughly halfway between Townsville and Cairns. Though it does have fees and the access is by boat so there are more costs with the commercial charters that ferry hikers to the trailhead. Ticks a few of your requests though.
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Re: Nice hikes to see the rainforest? (Cairns/Townsville are

Postby ofuros » Tue 21 May, 2019 5:00 pm

Wet tropics Great walk? ...4wd transfer(northern end), bus transfer (southern end) or helicopter access(northern end)

Not sure if there's a shuttle to Mount Bartle Frere track(eastern approach).
Mountains view are good for my soul...& getting to them is good for my waistline !
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Re: Nice hikes to see the rainforest? (Cairns/Townsville are

Postby nq111 » Fri 31 May, 2019 5:41 pm

Lots of trails now around the Paluma area. A great source for walks in the Townsville area is here: https://wanderstories.space/. Lots of historical posts to look through.
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Re: Nice hikes to see the rainforest? (Cairns/Townsville are

Postby Araucaria » Tue 16 Jul, 2019 10:58 am

Thanks for the replies! I managed to secure a booking for the Thorsborne trail, we're also heading to Cape Tribulation for five days to see the rainforest and the reef. We won't have a car, but I hope we'll find some nice walks from the village, or perhaps join someone with a car for a day trip. If any of you has some ideas on nice hikes/walks to do, we'll be grateful for tips. Also, has anyone camped at Cape Tribulation (in a tent) and can share some advice on which campground to choose, or if I should be concerned about spiders/ants? (I have an insect-phobia; I'm usually fine when hiking but it will be my first time camping in a tropical rainforest, so I was also considering a cabin to keep the insects away). Thanks in advance!
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Re: Nice hikes to see the rainforest? (Cairns/Townsville are

Postby trekker76 » Sun 21 Jul, 2019 9:38 pm

Hi, most of us in the tropics don't like insects either so its okay :) Not sure on your exact camping knowledge but its generally suggested to have an enclosed 'tent inner' at least to keep bugs out. Cabin of course is even easier, but if you do use a normal tent with some sort of enclosed inner protection you will be fine from crawlies. Just remember to store your food separately from pack and tent as white-tailed rats can chew through the material to get at food smells in the night. I put my food in a plastic screw top can and hang them off the ground away from the tent. Dont worry the rats don't bother people sleeping, they just want to nibble food.

I dont know a lot about whats up at Cape tribulation. It and the Daintree are a northern lighter types of Rainforest, very nice, more open. The southern type is much heavier. If you want to say you have been in forest thick as the Amazon drive about an hour south of Cairns between the towns of Babinda, Innisfail and Tully.

I'll jot it down for interests sake. Campsite hikes in this area are the Innisfail/Palmerston Misty Mountain tracks. These were old bullock routes connecting coastal towns to half a dozen inland towns 60km west on the Atherton Tablelands.Elevation change is 3000ft or so, mixture of mountain bike and walking tracks, with some creeks at campsites, a couple days worth.No bushwhacking needed or climbing skills, but up to grade 5 trail difficulty.

https://parks.des.qld.gov.au/parks/mist ... about.html

Directions:
There are probably shuttles doing the run from Cairns to the Gorrel trailhead where they start, but if not.
1.Regular greyhound bus from Cairns to Innisfail, about a 90min-2hr ride( or an hour by hire car)
2. A 35km taxi ride or drive from Innisfail to the end of Mena Creek Road, the start of the Gorrel Trailhead.

Also there is the Mt Bartle frere mountain walk, which is QLD's highest mountain. Takes about a day to get up and down, no technical climbing, just steep walking. Its about 75km south of Cairns, or about 30 km north of innisfail. There is a well known swimming hole and waterfall at the bottom called Josephine falls which is pretty popular with the tourists.
https://parks.des.qld.gov.au/parks/bart ... about.html
https://parks.des.qld.gov.au/parks/wooroonooran/
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