The Capricornia Bicyle Route is in the state of Queensland, Australia. It's 712 kilometre fully sealed length starts at Rockhampton on the Tropic of Capricorn and terminates at Ipswich, a westerly suburb of Brisbane, the capital of Queensland.Return to Table of Contents
The Capricornia Route connects to The Barrier Reef Bicycle Route at Rockhampton and the Pacific Bicycle Route at Ipswich.
As well as being part of the Bicycle Australia Around Australia Bicycle Route, it is also a loverly ride in its own right and provides the opportunity for an interesting and enjoyable bicycle tour.
The surrounding country is a mixture of agriculture and mining, with patches of interesting natural areas and features. There is a good representation of historical features as well and the area has a number of festivals related to the above.
You can choose to treat the ride as a challenge, covering considerable distances each day, or take a more leisurely trip, stopping at many places of interest along the way.
Again, depending on your preferences, there is a choice of accommodation from caravan/camping grounds to pubs and motels. These are usually located at suitable distances throughout the length of the route.
In either case, it is advisable to book in advance, particularly during peak holiday times. The distances shown in the guide are as accurate as possible.
We have not provided full details of food supplies as there are stores and eating places along the way. It may be possible to have all your meals catered for, if you wish, but the maximum food you will need to carry is for a couple of days. Water may be a problem and you should ensure you start each day with enough for the day.
Being fully sealed and with only a few, comparatively small hills, this route might seem a bit tame for the rugged, off-road tourer or rider. In this case, dig out your maps and consider using the route to get to some of the more interesting rough country around.
In summary, this is ride can be highly recommended for moderate and beginning bicycle tourers. Apart from a few reasonable climbs, it is mostly undulating. It is fully sealed which reduces bicycle requirements and by using accommodation, you can reduce the load you carry. If you have ridden on a long weekend tour, then this route is a nice one to try in whole or part.
This guide was first prepared by Bicyle Australia in 1986 and actively issued by Bicycle Australia until 1988. Some additional comments have been added by Terry Collins who ran the Bicycle Australia in 88 trip and from other riders.Return to Table of Contents
However, it is greatly in need of updating and feedback from users. If you have something to contribute, please do so. Email. This guide is only as good as the contributions received.
Table Of Contents
- When To Ride
- North-South or Vice Versa?
- How Hard Is It?
- Getting There and Back
- Equipment Requirements
- Food Supplies
- Sun Protection
- Route Description
- List Of Suggested Equipment
- Suggested Itinerary
- Tour Planner
- Bicycle Shops On The Route
- Further Reading
- Other Routes
- Warning and Disclaimer
- Route Development
When To Ride The Route
This route takes you from the borders of the tropical country into cooler temperate climate. As such, it can probably be ridden most times of the year. The temperature ranges for all seasons will increase as you move away from the coast, becoming very hot in summer and quite cold in winter. On the other hand, you can have some wonderful weather anytime of the year.Return to Table of Contents
Apart from temperature, the other consideration is wind. Do not travel in winter unless you are equipped to handle wet, cold and windy weather. The open country in places could make progress miserable and hard on such days, but a gentle breeze in summer could be a blessing.
North-South or Vice Versa?
This route guide has been written with a north to south bias. There is no reason for it to be ridden either way.Return to Table of Contents
How Hard Is It?
The Capricornia Route is probably one of the easier routes to ride. It is fully sealed and offers the basic choices of accommodation (bed or camp) along its full route. It is one of the few routes that can be undertaken without camping equipment.Return to Table of Contents
Campers will have the greatest freedom as they can follow their impulses for interesting side trips. A "head down - bum up" ride will take nine days or less, but we recommend at least ten days allowing for one rest day, say around Gayndah. It would be very easy to make this a fortnight trip and have another four days for side trips.
It is possible to book accommodation for every night, although this may require a couple of longer days, but these should be easily achievable as you will not be carrying the weight of camping equipment. Accomodation will vary from basic Aussie pub accomodation to quality motels. Basic means good food and clean, but generally older spring beds. Some caravan parks will offer onsite vans, which may be a more economical alternative to some motels.
This route also allows for giving it ago and as many of the major towns have travel agents, if you need to withdraw for any reason there should be no major problems. Check the WWW Information links under Tourist Information for each town, or search Yellowpages. Most towns have a bus service that can be used to withdraw.
If you get the impression that we are recommending this route, you are correct. If you can do a weekend trip, then you can ride this route. It is the muscles in your head that are important.
At the least, you will need a standard road map which you can pick up from most service stations, but most of this will be irrelevant as the route is only a small section of Queensland. At least look for a map that has the state spread into an upper and lower section. Compare the offerings at each brand of service station and at local newsagents.
Far better maps are the SunMap series from which you will require two. The Central Queensland covers Rockhampton to Monto/Abercorn. The South East Queensland map picks up the route at Monto and takes you through to Brisbane.
The route from Gayndah to Goomeri is also covered on the Wide Bay - Burnett map, but this map adds little to your route information and is of limited use unless you like reading maps out of interest, so you can safely skip it.
The SunMap series should be available from most tourist centres and newsagents in the area. You can look at very small gif images of the area covered by these two and some other SunMaps. The actual map is much more useful.
If you like the topographic style map, then you will need the following 1:100,000 series maps from NatMaps:
? 9051 Rockhampton 8950 Mt Morgan 8949 Banana 9049 Biloela 9048 Scoria 9148 Monto 9147 Eidsvold 9146 Mundubbera 9246 Gayndah 9145 Murgon 9245 Goomeri 9244 Nanango 9243 Esk 9343 Caboolture 9342 Ipswich 9442 Brisbane
Return to Table of Contents
Getting There And Back
First a warning to overseas visitors, just as there as creeks marked on maps do not mean that there is water available, similarly a rail line does not mean that there is a passenger rail service, or if it exists, that you and your bicycle will be welcome on it. Unfortunately, public transport outside major urban areas has been greatly savaged throughout Australia and are largely non-existent. The deep runmbling as you traverse the Capricornia Route is most likely an export coal train passing.
However, both route ends are serviced by passenger services. The better service is to Ipswich as it is effectively a far western suburb of Brisbane and is part of Queensland Rail's CityTrain Service. Bicycles can travel on this service except during directional peak hours.
Rockhampton is a major stop on the Brisbane to Cairns line and is part of Queensland Rail's TravelTrain Service, which means the service is rather poor as country passenger trains in Queensland seem to be largely tourist orientated. The Queensland Rail website can be searched for timetable and fare details, but there is no information on the carriage of bicycles on TravelTrain services. Another interesting site is here. It provides a schematic of the Brisbane - Rockhampton secton.
No passenger services exists for other parts of the route.
Did you know that Greyhound Buses started in Australia, before the name went to the USA and became famous in US movies? They have extensive information on their WWW pages. It is easy to find Rockhampton services (Cairns to Brisbane and other Cairns services). Ipswich is also mentioned on such routes as Brisbane to Adelaide.
McCaffertys is another bus company that provides services in the area, and much of the rest of middle and eastern Australia as well. Their WWW provides a number of additional services in the area compared to Greyhound Pioneer services. McCaffertys have now advised that their services stop at Biloela, Jambin, Dululu and Mt Morgan, as well as Rockhampton, Ipswich and Brisbane.
Brisbane Bus Lines provides a (weekly?) service through some of the towns along the route. Tourist pages may reveal a few other regional bus companies servicing some of the towns along the route.
Air ServicesReturn to Table of Contents
The new airlines Impulse Airlines and Virgin Blue only offer services to and from Brisbane.
Qantas fly to Brisbane and Rockhampton and most likely Ansett does as well, but their WWW site was off air when we went to check.
Regional air services exist and we suggest you consult the Yellowpages for current and further information. This will usually generate a telephone number at least.
The Yellowpages produced the following regional service providers;
Rockhampton Air Capricorn (07) 4922 9336 Dululu Westair Qld@Rockhampton (07) 4939 6383 Biloela Flight West Airlines (07) 4992 1799 Monto Ansett Air (07) 4161 1688 Gayndah Ansett Australia (07) 4161 1688
Where it exists, we have given a WWW link to Queensland Tourism pages for each town along the route. This will give you better details of the transport services available. These will be particularly handy iIf you need to take advantage of these in an emergency, or only wish to undertake a shorter ride.
Bicycle: As the route is fully sealed, there are no specific reccommendations as to your bicycle. If you are a slower rider attempting long days, we recommend a lighting system and safety vest.Return to Table of Contents
Bicycle Helmet: The Australia Medical Association, in its wisdom, has read the bones and decided that wearing a helmet will reduce head injuries for bicyclist, thus saving lives. It has consequently managed to convince our useless crop of politicians to mandate the wearing of bicycle helmets. This rule is usually arbitarly enforced, but you should be aware of it. We think a good sun hat is a better item to wear on your head when touring, but do recommend wearing a helmet in towns and cities.
It is also noted that the British Medical Association has recently rejected similar moves in the United Kingdom and pointed out the falicy of the logic in the claim.
Spare Parts and Tools: There are four bicycle shops on the route, but you should still carry the standard basic spares. If your bicycle has exotic parts, you should also carry the contact details of a reliable bicycle shop (usually in capital cities). Most towns will have some one who sells some bicycle bits, usually standard tubes and puncture kits at least.
Racks and Panniers: Standard touring racks and panniers should be fine.
Tent: No special reccomendations.
Cooking Gear: A stove is necessary and a basic reccomendation by Bicycle Australia as popular camping sites are often devoid of suitable wood. Methylated spirits and kerosene should be easily obtainable along the route. Camping fuel can be hard to come by.
Fishing Gear: This route has not been mentioned as recommended for fishing as no one has given us any feedback. Although a light hand line would not go astray if you find a likely stream or river and have the inclination. Please check the current state regulations at a fishing shop at one of the trail ends.
Other Useful Items: A number of water bottles are recommended. the number depends on the season, but water can be in short supply during the day along this route.
Water filtration/purification should be considered as the route is largely grazing and cropping, especially cotton crops with their chemical overload of the local environnment.
The guide lists known sources of tank water along the route. In many cases, you will need to ask (schools, etc). Unfortunately, grazing activites and spraying of cotton crops may render many creeks suspect.Return to Table of Contents
Human refuse has become a substantial problem at the popular camping and picnic spots. Too many motor vehicle drivers are too lazy to take home their garbage.Return to Table of Contents
Cyclists are of course different.
Do yourself and your fellow travellers a favour by cleaning up the camp site before you get settled. Rubbish should be collected in a garbage bag and deposited in the rubbish disposal bins you will find around.
There are plentiful food supplies along the route and you will not need to carry the full trips worth of food unless you have specialist requirements. It may be possible to have all your meals provided if you are using accommodation, or even if you are not.Return to Table of Contents
The major obstacle will be shop hours for purchasing supplies.
Bicycling along the Capricornia Route should be no more dangerous than bicycling anywhere in Australia. When surveyed it was one of the quieter routes, although it can still have peak hour traffic around major country towns or industrial sites like the mines on the northern end. Towards the southern end, the overall traffic level tends to pick up as you approach Esk and Ipswich.Return to Table of Contents
Bities And Other Nasties
Despite what you may have been told, the Capricorn is a rather safe place as far as the wildlife is concerned. If you are eaten by a crocodile, goanna, snake or koala, then your name will live forever in the record books. Dangers tend to be the standard ones.Return to Table of Contents
Motor Vehicles - These are by far your greatest danger. Locals are usually not a problem as they drive carefully and know the road, even if they do seem more interested in what is over the fence. The greatest problem is usually city people rushing to the dude ranch/rodeo or other relaxing holiday destination. Watch out for flashy four wheel drives.
Sea Wasps and Box Jelly Fish - if you go swimming in the season on the coast. We understand the lifesavers wear pantyhose/stockings to overcome the danger, but we are unable to confirm this by experience.
Snakes - Avoid walking through long grass and be very wary around creek banks and waterholes. Generally quietness is not the way as the snakes will hear you coming and move away. Snakes only attack if you transgres against them like insist on taking their close up photograph or wanting to stroke their tummies. Back off and let them go away. Killing snakes is illegal in Australia. Snakes will also come out onto the road on cooler days to warm up on the road, so be careful not to injure the wildlife.
If one of your party is bitten by a snake, please give a stiff whisky to the snake. The recommended treatment for the bitten party is first to sit them down and calm them down (a piece of 2"x2" should suffice), then bandage the bitten limb on the single bone part (upper arm and leg), away from the heart with a tightly wrapped bandage. Do not forget to release the bandage every ten minutes for a few seconds to restore circulation otherwise limb cells will die, which could lead to a worse problem. This treatment is to reduce the influx of venon through the lymphatic system to a level that the body can handle. Arrange for transportation (not by bicycle) of the bittten person to a source of snake bite serum. The snake will recover if left to its own devices.
Tics - These little blighters, usually picked up from grass in summer, are the worst as they can bury into skin folds and pump toxin into your blood as they gorge themselves on your blood to mature their eggs. A daily inspection and removal with long fingernails or tweezers (make sure you get the head) will suffice. You can also try insect repellant to dislodge them. Unless you have an allergy, death is unlikely, but a few days of toxin injection is definitely not recommended for good health.
Leeches - Another blood sucker that favours moist, grassy areas in warmer weather and requires blood to mature their eggs. Again check shoes and skin folds daily. Salt will cause most to shrivel up and drop off. Opinion is divided about the resultant blood flow from the puncture wound. Some let it contine to flow to flush out as much of the anti-coagulant as possible. Bicycle Australia doesn't know of anyone who has died from a leech bite and there are some good side effects apparently. Australian leeches are used in some medical treatments such as reducing brusing and increasing blood flow in certain areas.
Mosquitoes are more of an evening nuisance pest in some areas after rain. Generally long legged pants and shirt, with rub on insect repellant such as citronella (avoid spray cans and lighter to carry, one bottle does a month easily) is sufficent. Personally, I think spray on insect repellant contains an attractant so that mosquitoes keep buzzing around your ear reminding you to keep topping up the application.
Apart from packing citronella, tweezers, salt and a gauze bandage as safeguards, you will usually have nothing to worry about.
The Capricornia Trail between Rockhampton and Ipswich follows the Burnett Highway for most of its route. This route offers the rider historical towns and buildings, good scenery, National Parks with forest drives and scenic walks, an amazing variety of soil types, a diversity of agricultural crops, including peanuts, cotton, grain, sorghum, citrus, etc, geological oddities including the singing Mountain; bitumen roads all the way, and a variety of accommodation including caravan parks and camping grounds at all centres.Return to Table of Contents
It should be pointed out that the direct route to Brisbane is via the Bruce Highway and closer to the coast. This route for bicyclists is strongly not recommended. Traffic and road conditions are very dangerous and unfortunately, accidents involving bicyclists have occurred.
Note on Distances: Two Distances are given following the town place name. The first is the distance from the last town, the second is the culmulative distance along the route. Both are in kilometres. Distances given in the text refer to the last town centre and acculmulate until the next town centre is reached.
0 0Tourist Information: Curtis Park, Gladstone Road, Tel: (079) 27 2055, WWW information
Rockhampton is the Beef Capital of Australia as a series of large statues of various breed of Beef Bulls (yes - all well endowed) along the main road through town reminds you. So if you are interested in Bull, they are well worth a ride to view as they represent different beef breeds.
It was established in 1854 and is located on the Fitzroy River and the Tropic of Capricorn. The Tropic of Capricorn is the south most lattitude reached by the sun. An attractive spire adjacent to the Information Centre marks where the Tropic of Capricorn crosses the Bruce Highway.
This town naturally has a tropical flavour with some wonderful palms and bird life which are not so evident further south. It has a population of 75,000, making it one of the larger Queensland country towns, so you should have no trouble obtain services and supplies.
We are reliably informed that it has 42 pubs! The town has a large and varied selection of restaurants. The railway station has good shower and toilet facilities. The main street is named East Street and houses the main shopping area. The Post Office is situated on the corner of East and Denham Streets and has telephone facitlities next door.
Accomodation: numerous hotels, caravan (on-site vans) and camping parks.
Warning - Local Hazards: No give-way to the right rule. Railway lines run next to the road and trains have right of way! Storm water drains in the kerb guttering have large grates parallel to the road and swallow bicycle wheels.Return to Table of Contents
Leave Rockhampton by William Street, turn left onto Gladstone Street. continue straight ahead on a wide four laned road (there are a few shops selling fruit and vegetables along this stretch), the ranges can be seen dead ahead.
After approximately 1.5kms the Tropic of Capricorn Information Centre is on the right hand side and a sign on the left indicating the Bruce Highway and Mount Morgan 37kms. Fork left at the roundabout. There is a Lions Park on the right just prior to the roundabout.
After crossing a small creek, the route enters Fitzroy Shire and shortly after approaches an intersection where you turn right to Mount Morgan. There is another intersection at 11kms that you continue across.
The route is straight and flat for the next five kilometres.
Bouldercombe is a small township under devlopment for hobby farms. Numerous blocks of land are for sale. There is a pub, the Royal Hotel, on the left (no accommodation, food 10:00-20:30) and a park with shade trees. Good tank water. One kilometres further on, there is a service station combined with a well stocked general store (open seven days) and toilet facilities.
27kms from Rockhampton you cross Poison Creek (no water) on Stopford Way. The winding ascent them commences. The route is very steep in parts with hairpin bends and you may need to walk. At 30kms there are good views to the north over Rockhampton. The road surface improves as you enter Mount Morgan shire and the climb ends shortly after. Then it is a two kilometre not so steep descent, then another steep ascent and descent prior to entering Mount Morgan.
Cross over Dee River at Carmody Bridge. The town centre is at the intersection ahead and the route continues straight ahead to Dululu.
15 38Tourist Information: School of Arts Building, Morgan Street, WWW information
A town nesting amongst the ranges. Steeped in history. Gold discovered in 1882, one of the richest finds in the world and Mt Morgan's famous Open Cut Mine is the largest man-made hole in the world. This mine financed the start of British Petroleum (BP). Many homes and buildings of historical interest date well back into last century, e.g. the Court House and Town Hall. Of interest is the Goldmount Historical Museum.
Main shopping street is Morgan Street which crosses the route. The main shops are to the east of the route, however there is a bakery to the left. No laudromat or bicycle shop.
Accommodation: Five Hotels, of which the Leichhardt Hotel can be recommended. The Q and N Hotel also looks acceptable. There is a local council camping area on Rockhampton side of the Dee River, down Byrnes Parade by the dam which has toilet and shower facilities. No counter meals on Sundays, but Gus & POl's Eats is open seven days.
From the intersection in the middle of town, take the road south heading for Dululu. Initially the road is hilly with short sharp pinches prior to re-entering the Dee River valley. Cross Horse Creek (1.8kms) and Hamilton Bridge (4.3kms) with a golf course to the east and corn crops to the west (seasonal of course).Return to Table of Contents
At 11.3kms, cross small railway line and almost immediately thereafter a small bridge. The road surface is good and winds through pasture country with gum trees beside the road. Ranges can be seen ahead to the south and west. At 17.7kms you cross Pennyroyal Bridge and 2kms further on Oaky Creek. The route becomes more undulating, passing through bushland. 4Kms later you cross Slater Creek.
At 22kms, you leave Morgan Shire for Banana Shire and 2kms later pass through the settlement of Boorargen. The railway line is to the east as the winding road passes through the ranges and the scenery gradually changes to cotton farms.
At 25.3kms, cross Bonds Gully Creek (no water access) and 0.5kms further, you cross the railway line.
At 28.0kms, Calthrop Vines, of legendary evil for puncturing bicycle tyres. Thornproof tubes and tyres were developed for these little blighters. These evil little needles have small yellow flowers and can be found along the side of the road at different times of the year. There is no shade along this part of the road, but stay on the bitumen at all costs. A group of three bicyclist punctured their tyres 10 times along this stretch of road.
Aboriginal word for "soft". A hotel offering accommodation and counter meals. There is a shop, but five days open only. Population 52.
Public telephone outsied hotel and Post Office is nearby.
100 metres past the hotel is an intersection where you fork left. On the right is a rest area off the road with toilet facilities, tables and chairs. Rain water is available from a tank by the tennis courts. Camping is possible here.Return to Table of Contents
At 18.5kms cross over the Dee River again and continue ahead for Jambin and Biloela.
The route from Dululu to Biloela is flat with a few minor rises and very open. It now continues almost due South through mixed farming crop country interspersed with Brigalow and crosses Alma Creek, Don River and Bell Creek. There are no shade trees and the road is prone to flooding after rain. A school on the left after 41kms signals the approach of Jambin.
44 114Accommodation: Hotel/Motel - recomended for Bed and Breakfast and counter lunches/teas.
A very small settlement with hotel/motel and general store combined with post office. The later stocks amongst other things handbags, confetti and ballroom chalk - all necessities for the average bicycle tourist! Groceries are also available from the store which is open seven days a week. It is possible to camp behind the hotel with permission in an emergency, but the tank water is not accessible from outside the hall.
Update - Obviously they hold dances at the hall. The real question is when?
Leave Jambin heading South on the same road, cross over the railway and a little later under it. The road is narrow and the surface can be bad after local heavy rain and flooding. Within the next 15kms, the frequency of houses increases amongst the cotton fields. At an intersection at the 21kms mark, follow the main road to the right for Biloela and Monto.Return to Table of Contents
Approximately 1km further on, at the outskirts of Biloela, is a fork in the road. The right fork takes you to Biloela Caravan Park (250 metres up on the left towards Banana, where the on-site shop is open twice seven days a week. The left fork is the main route and enters Biloela.
28 142Tourist Information Centre:: Yellow Cross Chemist, Kariboe Street, WWW information.
Aboriginal for "white cockatoo". Of interest are Callide Valley Cotton Festival, held every two years in April in alternate years to Thangool's festival. The Cotton Ginnery, Agricultural Research Centre, Callide Dam and power station are out of town. There is also open-cut coal mines at Callide and Moura, featuring enormous drag lines and Greycliffe Homestead which is situated 6kms out of town.
There are full shopping facilties with supermarket on the corner of Gladstone and Kariboe Streets. The Post Office is on the corner of Kariboe and Melton Streets. There is a coin operated laundromat situated in Rainbow Street.
Accommodation: 6 Hotels/motels, 3 caravan/camping parks (Biloela CP to west of town, Boomerang near town centre off Dunn Street).
Depart heading south east, taking the Thangool/Monto road (turning right at the service station before the town centre and the railway crossing), and then passing the Countryman Motel on the right. The road is flat and open to both sides and exposed to winds. Take care crossing Kroombit Creek bridge 2kms further on. enter Thangool (5.5kms) with Airport on the right.Return to Table of Contents
12 154Accommodation: One hotel and one hotel/motel. No camping facilities.
Aboriginal word for "O'Possum". Gateway to the Banana and Calide Valley Irrigation Area for cotton and lucerne. A small town with one main street; shops on one side and a rest area with toilet facilties, plus tables and chairs on the other.
Of interest; Mt. Scoria, one of only three 'musical' mountains in the world and well worth a visit to see this phenomenon (6kms out of town).
Warning: There is no food, water or accommodation available until Monto.Return to Table of Contents
Depart east for Monto (signposted 85kms). 1.7kms at fork, bear left. Cross South Kariboe Creek at a low level bridge (15.4kms) and commence climb to top of Lawgi Hill (top of climb is 17kms and there is a locked water tank in exposed position by a hall). Road continues to climb gently along top of range until descent at 25kms. Good views of many peaks to east.
Cross Grevillea Creek (35kms) and enter Monto Shire 5kms further on.
Cross Cattle Creek (50kms) and commence ascent of Mt. Margaret. This climb lasts for 14kms with a couple of minor dips and is steep in parts (allow two hours if riding a loaded bicycle). There is a rest area at the top of the second climb with toilet facilities, water tank and covered eating shelters. Camping is possible away from the road at the back of the reserve under power lines in the state forest.
Following a descent of 6kms, the road widens at Cania Gorge and Dam turn-off (turn left for the Gorge 13kms and Dam 26kms) with good surface. The Gorge provides good camping and picnic facilties. Camping is prohibited at the dam itself.
Continuing on, the road undulates with some short tight pinches, crosses a concrete bridge, breasts a rises and enters the outskirts of Monto, passing the hospital on the right and Lions Park and rest area on the left. Turn left, heading east, and cross the railway bridge for the town centre. Turn first left and proceed parallel to the railway line with the shopping centre the second road on the right.
85 239Tourist Centre: Shire Office, 51 Newton Street, Tel: (071) 66 1155, WWW information
Aboriginal for "Ridgy Plains". Estalished in 1824 at junction of Three Moon and Monal Creeks, town is situated in rich agricultural area where sorghum, lucerne, wheat and sunflower are the main crops. Of interest is Cania Gorge, which is one of the most spectacular and colourful areas in southern Queensland, towering Castle Mountain, which overlooks the picturesque Cania Dam, gold panning, Old Monal Goldfields and Coominglah Scenic Drive.
The district is rich in geological features including 200 million year old coral reef, old gold, copper and coal mines. The town offers basic shopping facilities with two supermarkets. Their is a Bike shop opposite the Albert Hotel and basic spare parts and puncture repair kits are stocked by the Caltex service station adjacent to the railway line. There is a laundromat open to the public at the caravan/camping park.
Accommodation: Three hotel/motels, caravan and camping park. The Albert Hotel (diagonally opposite Shire chambers) has been recommended as good value and has meals available.
Leave town heading for Mulgildie and Eidsvold. Continue past turnoff to Jaycees Park. At 4kms, take right fork and continue south east for Mulgildie.Return to Table of Contents
Commence climb (7.3kms). Good views at top of climb (8.8kms) followed by good descent. Pass state school on left, railway on right and enter Mulgildie.
Town centre has four general shops and take-away food outlets. Hotel offers counter meals. Camping is possible at the showground 50 metres past supermarket on left.
Leave town from intersection in the centre by supermarket. Leave highway and turn right across railway line for Warum Dam and Abercorn, then immediately left onto bitumen single laned road. Road undulates for 5kms before short climb.Return to Table of Contents
The countryside changes from pastoral to bush and after descent, returns to pastoral and continues heading south. At 'T' intersection with dirt road (signposted Dareen) keep to the bitumen by turning left and heading east. At 22.5kms pas a churh on the right and eter Abercorn.
Major feature are numerous tennis courts with two water tanks and sports centre (soft drinks) with Post Office attached. There is a Country Womens Association (CWA) hall with facilities for hire.
Continue through settlement, just past CWA hall, turn left at intersection crossing railway line for Eidsvold. Road undulates through bush ranges. At 10.1kms, turn right and rejoin Burnett Highway. The country opens up over the next 5kms into wide grazing country.Return to Table of Contents
There is a rest area by Burnett River with tables, shelter, tank water and toilet facilities at 19.3kms. The route continues to undulate. Passing service station on left, you enter Eidsvold.
29 304Tourist Information: Warren's Motel, Tel (071) 65 1209. WWW information
Named after Eidsvoll in Norway. Eidsvold Station was established in 1848, the original slab building has been restored. Also noted for gold discovery in 1887 and an Australian record for cattle yarding of 7,482 head in 1932.
Of interest Waruma Dam on the Nogo River, the Geo Schafer Collection of Rocks, Minerals and Bottles, and Knockbreak Cottage.
full facilities including rest area in centre of town. Warrens carries basic bicycle parts.
Accommodation: One cafe/motel (Warrens and recommended), One hotel/motel, one caravan/camping park, which is situated on the left in Esplanade Street (one street back from main street) and has laundry and good showers.
Turn left at Hodgkinson Street and cross Harkness Boundary Creek passing the showground on the right, then cross the railway line. BP Service Station on left, then take right fork in road heading for Munduberra. Road surface is good and the road continues along the top of small ranges. At 4kms, road descends onto flat pastoral land.Return to Table of Contents
Caution - cattle trucks operate on this section of the route.
Approaching Munduberra there are two notable climbs and descents. At 35kms leave the main road, turn right, signposted Munduberra, and 1km further on you pass the Big Mandarin, Citrus Caravan Park on the right. 40 metres further on you take the right fork to the town centre and then turn left intoLyons Road - the town's main street.
36 340Tourist Centre: Big Mandarin, Citrus Country Caravan Village. WWW information
Aboriginal for "Step marks in trees". Situated in large citrus and agricultural area. Of interest; The Enormous Ellendale (Big Mandarin) with Ceratodus Lung Fish on display, Auburn Falls National Park with balancing rocks, falls and caves.
The town has full facilities.
Accommodation: Four hotels/motels, and one caravan/camping park with laundry facilties.
Retrace your steps to the Big Mandarin, leave the caravan park on the left and rejoin the highway heading for Gayndah. For the next 1kkms there are six reasonable climbs and descents through the ranges before a steady climb to the Binjour Plateau. Cross Philpott Creek at 15.5kms and Fox Creek a little later.Return to Table of Contents
The top of the climb is at 19.2kms and descends into Binjour Valley with general purpose shop open seven days a week with mechanic on call. Take the right fork at the shop and commence a gradual climb. Top of the climb is 27kms. There is the Binjour Range rest area 200 metres off the road with full facilities (?) and commanding views.
Following a steep descent into valley, road undulates through general crop growing country. At 44kms pass quarry on left and Kelly's Citrus Centre on right, before entering Gayndah.
There is a caravan park and motel on the right. 0.5kms further on, turn right at the intersection and cross bridge over Burnett River, then short steep ascent before turning left into the main street at the Burnett Hotel.
46 386Tourist Information: Historical Museum Complex, Simon Street, Gayndah, Tel: (07) 4161 1698, Fax: (07) 4161 1689, WWW information
Home of the famous Gayndah Oranges. Once considered as a possible site for the capital of Queensland. First Queensland Derby held here in 1868. Of interest; the Big Orange, Folk Museum. The town has full facilities.
Accommodation: Four hotels/motels of which the Burnett hotel can be recommended, and two caravan/camping parks.
Follow main street parallel to river past supermarket on left and you are heading for Ban Ban Springs. 1km further on you pass the Shire swimming pool on the left. After two short climbs the road flattens and passes through pastoral country with good views. At about 11kms, at Baramba Creek, emergency camping is possible.Return to Table of Contents
About 12kms, there is short hill before the Mt. Perry - Goomeri junction.
26 412Accommodation: Motel with shower facilities for campers. Camping in rest area is possible, but watch out for cane toads and snakes.
Permanent bubbling spring. Gateway to the Central Burnett and turnoff to Biggenden and Coulston Lakes with their Mt Walsh National Park and Crater Lake. Good rest area by the Springs. 24 hour service station and restaurant.
Continue straight on through the intersection with Isis Highway, heading south east, then south for Goomeri. The road is flat and gently winding through varied and attractive scenery. Cross Gravelly Creek (10.2kms) and Bolts Creek (13.0kms). A gentle climb for 3kms follows. Cross Marcella Creek (30.7kms), Tomine Creek (36.3kms) and Boonara Creek (38.3kms) for the first time.Return to Table of Contents
Lawless Park rest area with water tank (41.3kms) signified by "Booubijan 1847-1947". Commence ascent for 6.3kms. Good views of ranges at top of climb and a good downhill section. On approach to and after Booubijan, the road is very narrow and and poorly surfaced in plarts.
At 52.9kms pass the intersection with Oakfield Road, then two kilometres of climbing followed by a fast descent into a valley. Cross Billabong Creek (56.6kms) and Banarra Creek (57kms) and pass through Tansey (rest area on left with toilets).
Two medium climbs follow on leaving Tansey. Pass through Boonara at 63.2kms (church and homesteads). Road surface deteriorates approaching Goomeri and is very narrow in parts. For the final 3kms into Goomeri, the road meanders through lightly timbered country.
74 486Tourist Centre: Shire Office, Bligh Street, Kilkivan, Tel (071) 84 1133.
Of interest; Kinbombi Falls and Gallangowan State forest, Gem Fossicking.
Limited facilties but includes supermarket. Newsagent stocks limite bicycle parts. All shops and the the Post Office close for one hour between 12:00 and 14:00.
Accommodation: One hotel which serves counter meals. One 3 star Motel (Goomeri Motor Inn - highly recommended). Caravan Park.
Continue straight past the BP (restuarant open 7 days a week) and the Ampol (with caravan park) service stations on the right heading for Nanango. For the next 60kms, the road can be likened to a continuous roller coaster. Some hard ascents and good downhills will be encountered. The road surface is poor in parts and the road narrow with dirt shoulders.Return to Table of Contents
after 1km cross Nangur Creek. Good road surface initially, mainly pastoral country with few trees. After 22.5kms cross Four Mile Creek and 2.5kms further on Six Mile Creek (new bitumen surface in 1990) and enter the Shire of Nanango. At 42.5 kms you cross Wyalla Creek with two bridges, then is is 30kms on the Highway until Nanango. The increasing frequency of named side roads indicates the approach of town and the road is flatter.
Follow road past caravan park on the left and Fitzroy Hotel on right, take the next left into Drayton Street, which is the main street.
61 547Tourist Centre: Shire Office, 48 Drayton St, Tel: (07) 163 1307. WWW information
Accommodation: Five hotel/motels, three caravan/camping parks (the Twin Gums CP, 1km along Yarraman Road can be recommended).
Leave by turning right before the Shire Council offices and head south for Yarraman. The road is undulating for the next eleven (11) kilometres with a few steep pinches. At 18kms enter the Yarraman State Forest passing the turn off to Tarong Power Station on the rights. The road surface improves and the road widens with the approach into Yarraman. At 20.2kms, the descent into Yarraman commences, past the caravan park, followed by a steeper descent with winding road into the township.Return to Table of Contents
21 568Accommodation: Four hotel/motels, one caravan/camping park.
Continue on the same road, descending to Cooyar Creek.Return to Table of Contents
Caution - Heavy Traffic
The road undulates and becomes narrow at times. Cross Nukku Bridge (11kms) and Taremeo Creek (25kms) before entering Blackbutt.
15 583Accommodation: One hotel (one motel 1990), one small caravan/camping park (behind Caltex service station).
Spectacular forestry views further south up the range. Supermarket combined with cafe and delicatessen. Rest area with toilet facilties on left hand side of road intersection in middle of town. Arts and crafts shop combined with tea rooms on left leaving town to south.
Laundromat and Bakery in town. Picnic tables at Commisioner's Lookout.
Continue on the same road, leaving the township by climbing and descending a hill , whilst heading east for Moore and Esk. The route continues along ranges in dense forest. The surface is poor and the road narrow in places.Return to Table of Contents
Pass a timber mill (4kms) on the left, cross narrow bridge then Benarkin State School on the left and the road undulates with steep pinches. The top of Blackbutt Mountain is 11kms along with Commissioner's Lookout. This is bellbird country.
Fast descent with hairpins to bottom of the valley at Blackbutt Creek. Cross Wallaby Creek (19kms) for first time (three times in all) whilst descending gently through the ranges and along the valley floor to approach Moore.
21 604Accommodation: Camping with permission which can be obtained from Old Wares Shop in rest area.
Hosts annually one of the state's most popular rodeos. Service station, general store and Old Wares shop. Rest area with full facilties on opposite side of road to shops.
Continue on same road heading for Esk. Cross Stradbroke Creek (4kms) and Emu Creek (6kms) and pass through Collington (store open seven days from 5am). The road undulates and is narrow and traffic dense. Cross railway line (11kms) and turn right for Harlin (the main highway continues to Kilcoy). Cross Turtle Creek as you approach Harlin.Return to Table of Contents
12 616Accommodation: One hotel/motel which can be recommended.
Hamlet with hotel/motel and service station. Rest area with full facilities on opposite side of road.
Continue through Harlin on gently approaching road. Cross Boundary Creek (11.9kms) before approaching Toogoolawah. The route bypasses the main business area just after the Ampol 24hour service station. You are heading south.Return to Table of Contents
13 629Accommodation: Four hotel/motels.
Attractive parks and houses. Full facilities including rest areas with toilet blocks situated in town and at parks.
continue on past Ampol roadhouse heading for Esk. There are two moderate ascents prior to Esk. the road has hard shoulders for most part and heavy traffic.Return to Table of Contents
19 648Tourist Centre: Shire Office,Tel: (07) 584 1200. WWW information
A picturesque town surrounded by mountains. Centre of The Valley of Lakes. Lake Wivenhoe was Australia's largest excavation project, there are picnic areas and lookout just off the main highway.
Lake Somerset (25kms north east) has been compared to the Scottish lochs with its picnic areas and lookouts.
Full facilties including laundromat situated close to Post Office and next to small service station. Rest area with full facilities in centre of town.
Accommodation: Three hotel/motels, one caravan/camping park which can be recommended.
Continue on heading for Ipswich on good road with shoulders. Cross Paddy Gully Creek (6.7kms), Tea Tree Gully (15.4kms) and Logan Creek (17kms) via the Captain Logan bridge. Wivenhoe Dam (29.5kms) carries the main road and is 2.2kms long. There are full facilties at the picnic ground on the south eastern end of the dam wall. Continue to Fernvale (40.2kms) where there is a Lions Rest Area park. Fernvale also has a supermarket, hotel/motel and a bakery.Return to Table of Contents
Caution - There is a narrow bridge with no side rails prior to Fernvale where the only safe line is the centre of the road.
The road on leaving Fernvale climbs one further range prior to reaching the outskirts of Ipswich where the road merges with the highway to/from Toowoomba. From here you follow the signs to Ipswich and Brisbane, but take care in the fast moving traffic. Route 38 is required for entry into the town centre of Ipswich, which is badly signposted in parts, but basically follows Pine Mountain Road. There is a steep ascent into Ipswich. One you cross the Breme River bridge, you have reached the town centre.
64 712Tourist Centre: Queen's Park Kiosk in Queen's Park, Tel: (07) 281 5167. WWW information
Ipswich is the oldest provincial towen in Queensland. Of interest; magnificent historical buildins, the Art Gallery and the town gardens.
It is possible to join the suburban rail network or pick up some long distance buses from Ipswich.
Ipswich is also the start of the Pacific Bicycle Route to Windsor/Sydney.
Accommodation: Numerous motels, hotels and to caravan/camping parks. The Queens Park accomodation is now close.
If you wish to cycle into Brisbane, these instructions are from Ipswich Post Office to Brisbane Post Office. The route is hilly with variable road conditions and poor shoulders, narrow in places, but with a pleasant final 6kms into the main city area.Return to Table of Contents
to be continued......
42 754Tourist Centre: 1st Floor, City Hall, King George Square, Tel: (07) 221 8411.
A modern city of skyscrpers, parks and gardens, yet with some buildings restored for posterity. The capital of Queensland. Rail terminus for trains from Sydney, New South Wales (different guage). When getting around Brisbane, you may find it useful to remember that Queen Street is the main street. Street named after queens and princess are all parallel and at right angles to those name after kings.Return to Table of Contents
List Of Suggested EquipmentThis is a generic bicycle touring packing list for your jogging your memory. It is most definitely not suggested that you take all of this stuff.
Panniers and Tie Downs
Tent and Bedding
- Rear Panniers
- Front Panniers
- Handbar bag.
- Stretch straps/tie down straps
- Tent and stuff sack.
- Ground sheet and stuff sack.
- Tent fly and stuff suck.
- Tent poles.
- Tent pegs.
- Sleeping mat/closed cell.
- Sleeping bag.
- Sleeping bag inner sheet.
- Stove cleaner/spares
- Cooking billy, frypan (prefer wok).
- Steamer(?), Grater(?), Wooden spoon(?)
- Knife, fork, spoon
- Cooking knife
- Cutting board (pannier stiffener?)
- Plate, bowl and mug.
- Can opener.
- Collapsible water carrier.
- Washup stuff
- Water filter/purification tablets.
- Matches and spare waterproof box of matches.
- Riding clothes
- Evening wear
- Around town wear
- Rain gear
- Cold weather gear
- Plastic bags,
- Cloth bags
Bicycle Repair Kit
- Length of cord/clothes line & pegs.
- Sink plug or flap of rubber
- Sewing Repair Kit.
- Folding Saw
- Camera, lenses and films, spare batteries.
- Torch, spare batteries and globes.
- Candle stub for lighting fires in wet.
- First aid kit including
- powder for prickly heat
- sun screen
- insect repellant
- lip salve
- toilet paper
- Money, cash and credit cards.
- Tickets timetables and documentation.
- House keys.
- Route guide
- Screwdriver, blade and philips,
- Allen keys,
- Tyre levers
- Puncture kit.
- Spare tube(s)
- Spare spokes.
- Spoke key
- Spare gear cable.
- Spare brake cable
- Small pliers for cable cutting/crimping
- Small file
- Rear cluster remover
- Oil, grease, lube powder
- Cleaning Rag
- Spare tyre (?)
Return to Table of Contents
- Cycling gloves,
- bicycle lights and spare globes,
- Safety vest.
The itinerary below is suitable for an accomodated ride or a fitter camper.
Return to Table of Contents
Day From To Daily Culmulative Notes 1 Rockhampton Dululu 70 70 Climb to Mt Morgan. 2 Dululu Biloela 72 142 none 3 Biloela Monto 97 239 none 4 Monto Eidsvold 65 304 5 Eidsvold Gayndah 82 386 6 Gayndah Gayndah 0 386 Rest day. 7 Gayndah Goomeri 100 486 8 Goomeri Yarraman 82 568 9 Yarraman Esk 80 648 10 Esk Ipswich 64 712
The table below is to help you develop you own itinerary. We have listed various fields to help you plan. The three most important are usually distance to be covered, where to put your head for the night and how do you get fed. The Key is below:
This table could be improved by more information.
- Distance to town from last town,
- Camp - camping facilities, Emer (emergency only), Per (permission required)
- Van - Onsite van available (not always)
- Pub - Hotel accommodation. Bedroom, with communal bathroom, no cooking facilities.
- Motel - Motel accomodation, ? Hotel/motel has uncertain meaning, could be just pub.
- Food - basic notes on service, Counter (6) means counter lunch six days aweek.
Return to Table of Contents
Distance Camp Van Pub Motel Food Town Notes 0 0 Yes Yes Yes Yes Rockhampton 1 23 Store Bouldercombe 2 15 Yes No 5 ? Cafe,Counter(6) Mt Morgan 3 32 Yes Shop(5), Counter Dululu 4 44 Emer Yes Store(7), Counter Jambin 5 28 3 ? 6 ? Super Biloela 6 12 No 1 1 Shop, Thangool 7 85 Yes ? 3 ? Super Monto 8 13 Shops, Takeaway, Counter Mulgildie 9 23 Abercorn 10 29 1 ? 1 1 Full Eidsvold 11 36 1 ? 4 ? Full? Mundubbera 12 46 2 ? 4 ? Full Gayndah 13 26 Yes? 1 Rest Ban Ban Springs 14 74 1 1 Super, Counter Goomeri 15 61 2 ? 5 ? Full? Nanango 16 21 1 4 ? Yarraman 17 15 1 1 Super/deli/cafe Blackbutt 18 21 Per Store Moore 19 12 1 Harlin 20 13 4 ? Toolgoolwah 21 19 1 ? Yes Yes ? Esk 21 40 1 ? Super Fernvale 1 24 2 Yes Yes Yes Yes Ipswich 1 42 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Brisbane
Bicycle Shops On The Route
The following information is know to Bicycle Australia about bicycle shops. The year is the age of the information.Return to Table of Contents
Rockhampton - Murray Cycle Works, 82 William Street (south side), 1988.
Biloela - Toy/Bicycle Shop Combined, Kariboe St (beside coffee shop), 1988. Some spares.
Monto - (opposite Albert Hotel), 1990.
Ipswich - Bob Dowse Sports, 19 Down St, North Ipswich (07) 281 2794.
This is a list of places where the route or portion of the route is ridden and written up. We welcome other references.Return to Table of Contents
Kathi Beck - 'Bicycling the Burnett, An alternative to the big bad Bruce', Freewheeling No. 30, May/June 1985, pp 52-54. An account of a ride from Brisbane, initially via the Bruce Highwat to Maryborough, thence to Gayndah to join the Burnett for the remainder of the trip to Rockhampton. Impossible traffic conditions were cited as the reason for the change.
Helen Smith - 'Bicycling the Burnett - another story', Freewheeling No 30, May/June 1985, pp 54. A brief account of the author's experiences cycling from Rockhampton to Brisbane whilst a team member researching original material for this route guide.
Basically, there are endless variations possible on this route. There are so many alternate loops that we could not begin to list them. Start with the SunMaps and move onto the NatMaps if you want real off road stuff.Return to Table of Contents
Most of the alternate loops will require some form of gravel road bicycling, so at least a proper touring bicycle is recommended.
Where recommendations are given for facilities and services, these are the personal recommendations of the individual concerned. They should be considered simply as a positive report when a service or facility has been used.Return to Table of Contents
Bicycle Australia does not recommend any facility or service over another, nor are we able to rank or rate facilities or services.
Where a service or facility is known to be of an unacceptable standard, we will report such.
Warning and Disclaimer
The information contained in this route guide is copyright for Bicycle Australia.Return to Table of Contents
Individuals may use it for free and we ask you to send feedback, updates, corrections, additions, etc to keep this guide as useful as possible.
For commercial use, we would like you to clear your conscience by sending a small fee per rider to Bicycle Australia.
Lastly, in this litigatious world, we have to point out that this information is used at your own risk.
Whilst every care has been taken in researching the information, Bicycle Australia and the members associated with the production of this guide can not accept any liability for incorrect or outdated information. The guide has been checked by bicyclist ridden the route. Should you feel inspired to follow in their wheeltracks, any additional information or comment you feel you could contribute to this guide would be appreciated.
All the work in route research is undertaken on a voluntary basis. Consequently, should you find either additional information for or incorrect information in this guide, please let us know so we may correct it.Return to Table of Contents
Bicycle Australia also welcomes contributions of ride notes from other tours you have done. Should you be contemplating another ride and would like to assist with developing other routes, please contact Bicycle Australia. We can then inform you of the information we are looking for in the area in which you are planning to ride. We thank you now for any assistance that you are able to give.
Guide Dates are significant dates in the history of the production of this WWW guide. A combination of work todo and work done.
TODO: Fix telephone numbers (any number less than 10 digits), update bicycle shop contacts, add extra WWW links, list possible off-road and rough road varations (impossible to do all).
Return to Table of Contents
- 20060531 - Update Ipswich accommodation.
- 20001023 - Guide entered onto WWW site with some current WWW links, added 1990 feedback.
- 1990 - Outside feedback recieved on whole route.
- 198807/08 - Bicycle Australia in 88 Ride, Guide reviewed on road
- 1987 - Guide compiled and road reviewed by compilers.
- 1986 - On road research
Bicycle Australia is the national bicycle touring association. It is a not-for-profit association of indvidual members. All our work is carried out by volunteers.
It's aim is the development of a network of rural bicycle routes. It's current primary goal is the development of the Around Australia Bicycle Route, but we are still working on all the other routes. It's policy is to make all information available on the WWW.
You can support the work by:
- submitting route and town information, or
- providing updated information, or
- making a donation if you found this guide useful. We suggest $1Aust for each day's riding (per rider for commercial groups), or
- letting us know where the guide was not useful, or
- taking out Bicycle Australia membership at $25Aust for a year.
Bicycle Australia can be contacted on:
- mail: 29 Darwin Road, Campbelltown, NSW, 2560.
- email: email@example.com
Please note that Bicycle Australia does not answer touring enquiries. All the information we have available is listed or will be listed on our WWW pages. This is not rudeness, but an essential rule as answering individual enquiries takes time away from entering and updating WWW information. Touring enquiries are best addressed to the newsgroups Aus.Bicycles, Rec.Bicycles.Rides and rec.bicycles.off-road as appropriate.Return to Table of Contents
Commercial consultation and guiding is available at negotiated rates.
Bicycle Australia would like to thank the many bicycle riders who have contributed to the research that forms the basis of this guide.Return to Table of Contents
This includes Helen Smith, Michael Burlace, Mike and Leonie Fretwell, Wendy Davies and Terry Collins.
BA would also like to thank the Federal Dept of Sport, Recreation and Tourism for their support.
Bicycle Australia would like to thank the following riders who have provided updated and/or additional material: Margaret Crisp (1990).