What's special?In the Blackbutt Range, hoop pines tower over subtropical rainforest in Benarkin State Forest and Forest Reserve. The forest contains hoop pine plantations established in the 1920s and open eucalypt forests with blackbutt, tallowwood, white mahogany, grey gum, blue gum and ironbarks.
The National Bicentennial Trail passes through the forest.
Exploring BenarkinHave a picnic then go for a scenic drive through the forest. The 13km forest drive starts east of Blackbutt on the D’Aguilar Highway and finishes at the camping areas. A small shelter shed, toilets, barbecues, firewood and picnic tables are provided in the Benarkin picnic area.
Camp or picnic beside Emu Creek, a tributary of the Brisbane River. Clancys camping area is beside the Bicentennial National Trail. The nearby creek is quite shallow making this an ideal family campsite. Emu Creek camping and picnic area, a further 2km along the forest drive, is set among tall trees near a large waterhole, a haven for wildlife.
Toilets, barbecues, firewood, picnic tables and tap water are provided at both camping areas. Emu Creek also has cold showers.
Follow the Bicentennial Trail through the forest. Tether your horses away from the camping area and water them downstream.
Trail bike riding, horse riding, cycling and four-wheel-driving are allowed along the logging roads by permit only. Dogs on leashes are allowed overnight at Clancys only and in the Emu Creek and Benarkin day use areas.
WalkingLook for wildlife along the track beside Emu Creek connecting the two camping areas. See goannas, water dragons, freshwater turtles, red-backed wrens and star finches.
AccessibilityThe toilets at Emu Creek are wheelchair-accessible.
Getting thereBenarkin is about two hours’ drive north-west of Brisbane off the D’Aguilar Highway.
Turn off at the Benarkin Day Use area, a popular stopover on the highway for travellers. The camping areas are 18–20km from Blackbutt along the forest drive. Conventional access is possible with care along 16km of gravel with steep, narrow, winding sections.