Conondale Range

StartClick to Reverse the Dynamic Map and Driving NotesWoodford
DifficultyDifficulty 1.5/5
Suitable For4WD 
Distance57.66 km
Minimum Days1
Average Speed53.56 km/hr
Travel Time1 hr 4 mins
Page Updated: 27 Jan 2019


This spectacular mountain range lies between Jimna and Maleny, and features: deep gorges, thick subtropical rainforests, and many cold but refreshing boulder-strewn creeks, rock pools and waterfalls. A majority of the steep forested slopes of this range lie within the 2126 hectare Conondale National Park as well as adjacent State Forests. These forests provide safe haven for a multitude of plants, birds and animals, which rely on this particular ecosystem to survive. Some species are so rare and unique to this part of the world - they are endangered of becoming extinct.

The mountains within the Conondale Range provide the water source for the Mary River to the north, and the Stanley River, Brisbane River and Lake Somerset toward the south. Since this region receives very high rainfall - especially in the early months of the year, the rivers and creeks are constantly flowing.

This interesting 4WD trek takes in historic towns such as Woodford - one of the earliest settled areas of the shire, and Conondale - an old renowned farming district located at the headwaters of the Mary River. The Conondale Range and the surrounding forests offer plenty of attractions and activities, and experienced bushwalkers and birdwatchers will be thoroughly rewarded.

How to Use this Trek Note

Click the "Map" tab to see the route we've provided. Icons on the map are the POIs you'll need for navigation purposes. Be sure to check the list of Nearby Places on each POI page..

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The forests in and around Conondale Range, habitat hundreds of plant, bird and animal species - with many depending on this unique ecosystem for survival. In some cases - it is the last stand, and thus being given a vulnerable or endangered status. The Gastric-brooding frog for example has already become extinct - with the last specimen found in the Conondale Range in 1979. The Fleay’s Barred frog, another indigenous animal in the Conondale region is highly endangered.

The various tracks through the Conondale Range and surrounds are formed with gravel, dirt or clay. The drive is relatively easy to moderate, depending on prior weather. As you drive through the forest, the eucalypts you will see are grey gum, Queensland grey ironbark and forest red gum. You should also encounter: bunya pines, flooded gums, giant strangler figs, staghorns and plenty of fungi and ferns. Fauna that you may encounter are: skinks, sugar gliders, pouched frog and the platypus frog, freshwater cray, black-breasted quail, possums, bats, bandicoots, pademelons and even platypus.


Four tribal groups indigenous to the region named Gubbi Gubbi, Wakka Wakka, Jinibara and Kabi Kabi had lived a traditional lifestyle for thousands of years, until the arrival of European settlers, which changed the Aboriginal lifestyle forever. In 1942, Governor Gipps declared a large reserve to protect bunya pines which was a significant food source for Aboriginal people. It was therefore illegal to clear or settle on land where bunya pines grew. This lasted until 1860, when the new Queensland Parliament withdrew the reserve status and settlement began in the early 1890s, with forests being cleared for dairy farms and fodder crops. Townships soon sprouted and grew in conjunction with gold fossicking and timber harvesting.

Today, the Upper Mary Valley sustains timber plantations, which continue to provide quality timber resources, whilst old growth native forests are now recognised for their high conservation and recreational values. The Queensland Government also recognises the strong cultural links the descendants of the traditional owners have with the region, and also the rare and endangered species that need careful management practises in place to sustain this for generations to come.


MUST READ: You are strongly encouraged to read the following articles prepared by the knowledge experts at ExplorOz for your safety and preparation before undertaking any published ExplorOz Trek - Outback Safety, Outback Driving Tips, Outback Communications, and Vehicle Setup for the Outback.

There are many sections that are very remote and heavily wooded so please carry all the necessities such as: adequate fuel, food and water supplies. GPS navigational equipment and communications equipment such as HF/UHF radios, mobile or satellite phones are a must. Recovery gear such as snap straps, spades and hand winches, etc will assist with bogging issues. You could also consider travelling in a convoy of two or more vehicles for additional safety.

Beware of oncoming vehicles such as logging trucks on the forestry tracks and obey all forestry signs. Please take care and keep you speed down as there are wild deer and other animals that roam the forests. Stay on track and tell a responsible person where you are going and when you should return. Wear sturdy shoes. Carry adequate clothing, water and snack food. Carry a first aid kit — use repellent on exposed skin and shoes to discourage mosquitoes, leeches and ticks (remove ticks immediately).

It is important to check weather conditions, track conditions and access restrictions with rangers or Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service in Kenilworth before you embark. This is a high rainfall area and forestry roads and tracks can become boggy and slippery after rain.


For more information permits, track conditions and if any access restrictions are in place, please contact either Maleny Visitor Information Centre or the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service - see below.

Maleny Visitor Information Centre

Maple St, Maleny QLD 4552
Phone: (07) 5499 9033

Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service

Sunday Creek Road, Kenilworth
PO Box 52, Kenilworth QLD 4574
Phone: (07) 5446 0925

Fuel Supplies & Usage

Fuel Symbol Fuel supplies are also available at Kenilworth and Maleny (not shown on this trek note).
4cyl 8 litres4cyl 9 litres4cyl 12 litres
6cyl 9 litres6cyl 10 litres6cyl 10 litres
8cyl 9 litres8cyl 10 litres
Usage is averaged from recorded data (* specific to this trek) and calculated based on trek distance.

Best Time To Visit

Summer is ideal for swimming with temps above 30 degrees. Heavy monsoonal rains can make travel difficult. Winter temps may drop below zero, although in general - a good season for bushwalking.

Closest Climatic Station

Maleny Tamarind St
Distance from Trek Mid Point 14.22km NE
Mean Max. °C26.726.325.123.521.118.918.820.222.724.224.926.4
Mean Min. °C18.818.717.215.011.810.19.19.812.414.315.917.7
Mean Rain mm288.3319.5289.2193.2141.7108.089.363.664.2109.6137.9199.8
    Best time to travel      Ok time to travel      Travel NOT recommended

Services & Supplies

There are additional supplies and facilities at Kenilworth and Maleny (not shown on this trek note).


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What to See

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Where to Stay

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Woodford to D'Aguilar Hwy & Stoney Creek Rd
Driving: 6.77 km
Heading: 302°
Avg Speed: 79.2 km/hr
EST Time: 05:07
D'Aguilar Hwy & Stoney Creek Rd to Mountford Creek, Stoney Creek Rd
Driving: 5.35 km
Heading: 338°
Avg Speed: 57.29 km/hr
EST Time: 05:36
Mountford Creek, Stoney Creek Rd to Mountford Rd, Bellthorpe SF Southern Boundary
Driving: 1.77 km
Heading: 272°
Avg Speed: 44.64 km/hr
EST Time: 02:22
Mountford Rd, Bellthorpe SF Southern Boundary to Brandons Rd & Cedar Creek Rd
Driving: 7 km
Heading: 328°
Avg Speed: 52.27 km/hr
EST Time: 08:02
Brandons Rd & Cedar Creek Rd to Conondale Range
Driving: 4.48 km
Heading: 27°
Avg Speed: 45.18 km/hr
EST Time: 05:56
Conondale Range to Bellthorpe Rd, Kenilworth SF Boundary
Driving: 6.9 km
Heading: 334°
Avg Speed: 56.07 km/hr
EST Time: 07:23
Bellthorpe Rd, Kenilworth SF Boundary to Bellthorpe Rd & 4WD Track
Driving: 4.06 km
Heading: 294°
Avg Speed: 52.52 km/hr
EST Time: 04:38
Bellthorpe Rd & 4WD Track to Kilcoy Creek, 4WD Track
Driving: 1.21 km
Heading: 318°
Avg Speed: 43.42 km/hr
EST Time: 01:40
Kilcoy Creek, 4WD Track to Grigor's Rd & Bellthorpe Tk
Driving: 3.7 km
Heading: 333°
Avg Speed: 53.22 km/hr
EST Time: 04:10
Grigor's Rd & Bellthorpe Tk to Maleny Kenilworth Rd & Grigor's Rd
Driving: 11.67 km
Heading: 61°
Avg Speed: 43.3 km/hr
EST Time: 16:10
Maleny Kenilworth Rd & Grigor's Rd to Conondale
Driving: 4.75 km
Heading: 130°
Avg Speed: 62.04 km/hr
EST Time: 04:35
Distance is GPS recorded distance based on the travel mode shown (Driving, Straight, Cycling, Walking etc), Direction is straight line from start to end, Avg Speed & EST Time is calculated from GPS data.


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