Australia: The Land Where Time Began

A biography of the Australian continent 

Main Range National Park

What's special?

In the Central Eastern Rainforests Reserves Australia World Heritage Area, Main Range National Park forms the western part of a semi-circle of mountains in south-east Queensland known as the scenic rim. The park extends from Mt Mistake south to Wilsonís Peak on the New South Wales border and includes Mt Superbus, southern Queenslandís highest peak.

The parkís open forests, rainforests and montane heath provide habitat for many animals, including the eastern bristlebird, Coxenís fig parrot and black-breasted button-quail, which are threatened with extinction.

Spicerís Gap is believed to be a traditional pathway for Aboriginal people travelling between the inland and the coast. In 1828, Allan Cunningham discovered the route through the mountains now called Cunninghamís Gap. Stockman Henry Alphen discovered Spicerís Gap in 1847. The Spicerís Gap Road, used to carry supplies to and from the Darling Downs, is the best remaining example of sophisticated 19th century engineering in Queensland.

Exploring Main Range

Picnic facilities and walking tracks at Cunninghamís Gap, Spicerís Gap and Queen Mary Falls help visitors enjoy the parkís special attractions. The rest of the park is trackless and rugged wilderness suitable only for experienced, well-equipped bushwalkers.

Have a bush picnic beside West Gap Creek near Cunninghamís Gap, at the Pioneer Picnic Area at Spicerís Gap, or at Queen Mary Falls. Picnic tables, wood barbecues and toilets are provided. West Gap Creek also has a shelter shed and tank water. Boil the water before drinking.

Re-discover the past on the Spicerís Gap Road ó the route taken by early pioneers still shows evidence of early road construction. A small cemetery marks the resting place for a number of early travellers.

Enjoy spectacular views from Governorís Chair, Sylvesterís or Fassifern lookouts or the summits of Mts Cordeaux and Mitchell.

Go birdwatching along the Box Forest track. Hear bellbirds calling. See satin bowerbirds, Australian ground thrush and king parrots. See spear lilies and flowering orchids in spring.

Camp at Spicerís Gap. Bookings are required for all public holiday long weekends. Toilets, picnic tables, tank water and wood barbecues are provided.

Bush camping is allowed in the more remote areas of the park by permit from the ranger at Cunninghamís Gap.


Enjoy short or half-day walks in the park or go hiking. Check for ticks in spring and summer. WARNING: Anyone hiking in undeveloped parts of the park must be physically fit and have sound navigational skills. Leave your trip details with someone reliable and advise your safe return. Take a positioning beacon, topographic map, compass, mobile phone, first aid kit and plenty of food, water and warm clothing.

Getting there

Main Range is 116km south-west of Brisbane or 50km east of Warwick on the Cunningham Highway. Cunninghamís Gap is on the highway. Spicerís Gap camping area is on the Spicerís Gap Road, which is unsuitable for camper trailers and caravans. Turn off the Cunningham Highway 5km west of Aratula and follow the signs. The western approach leaves the highway 1∑5km past the park headquarters and ends 1∑6km before Governorís Chair carpark. (There is no through route.) This western approach is suitable for four-wheel-drive vehicles only and closed in wet weather.

Sources & Further reading


Journey Back Through Time
Experience Australia
Aboriginal Australia
National Parks
Photo Galleries
Site Map
                                                                                           Author: M.H.Monroe  Email:     Sources & Further reading