passes through Cooloola's western catchment, a low area of wallum banksia, which flowers prolifically in spring, and taller forests with scenic views east over the Cooloola sandmass. Cooloola Way
is signed as 4WD - and although potholed, the road is mainly sand on a solid road base, making the journey a relatively easy run. Some sections may be impassable after wet weather
so check conditions before travelling.
Besides the beautiful scenery offered during the drive, one of the major attractions in this part of Cooloola is Harry's Hut camping and day-use area. There is actually an old hut situated right by the river, with respective signage revealing its colourful history. This camping area lies amongst the backdrop of the forest with each camp site nicely set in, making it almost hidden from the next. Harry’s Hut is the only camping area on the upper Noosa River with vehicle access and can be reached by 4WD - and even by boat!! There are a number of small access jetties that service the camp sites, which makes it convenient for those who wish to use the river for activities like canoeing, boating (with electric motors), or fishing for bass.
After returning to Cooloola Way
from Harry’s Hut and heading further north, you will eventually meet Rainbow Beach Road. Just before this road however, our trek note heads towards the coast, taking in the western and eastern firebreak tracks (4WD only), before meeting Teewah Beach for the northerly coastal run towards Double Island Point.
How to Use this Trek Note
Click the "Map" tab below 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.
If you'd like to save this information there are a couple of ways to go about it, depending on what you're actually after:-
- Ideal solution - download the ExplorOz Traveller App from Google Play or the App Store. The app enables you to carry the ExplorOz Places, Treks, & Maps data offline in your mobile device ready for your adventures. It is a complete mapping, navigation and tracking app. For more details, read our ExplorOz Traveller page.
- You can print a paper copy of the text using the print icon button shown above, near the social media buttons. For the best output it is advised to open each tab/section to load all images and artwork. You will still need to click open each Place page (listed in Where to Stay, What to See) to print off all available information.
- If you have a Hema Navigator or use Mapping Software such as OziExplorer, or TrackRanger AND you are an ExplorOz Member, then you can click the Download Trek button at the top of this page to obtain the raw data files (eg. GPX) for this Trek.
- If you're not a Member, or you'd like to batch download the entire Treks database you can obtain this by buying a product called EOTreks Route Files from our online shop.
The Cooloola region is the birthplace of the Noosa River
, which rises in the Como escarpment and is distributed by tributaries that work its way slowly across the wetlands. The river flows south, where there are many kilometres of scenic waterways to explore using portable watercraft such canoes.
The western catchment of the Great Sandy National Park provides a diverse array of flora. These include tall deep-rooted eucalypt and banksia forests, which give way to low wallum in the shallow soils. Remnant rainforests thrive on the rich soils along Kin Kin
Creek, whilst paperbark and cabbage palms are abundant on the adjacent waterlogged plains. Some of the fauna that you may come across include kangaroos, and plenty of chattering birds like honeyeaters and black cockatoos.
The environmental conditions can be harsh and often vary greatly - ranging from hot, dry summers to cool, wet winters. The low-lying areas are typically wet all year round. Cooloola offers fantastic bushwalking opportunities which are best enjoyed when the wildflowers
bloom in the spring. There are many different walk tracks, where there are signs at the start, indicating the distance. Information and walking leaflets are available from the Noosa Information Centre.
For thousands of years, Cooloola has been a special place for Aboriginal people. The Kabi Aborigines were the first known inhabitants of the Cooloola region. This tribe occupied an area from the Mooloolah River to the Burrum River. Evidence from the amount of broken shells found on the beaches suggested the group ate fish and various molluscs.
In 1770, Captain Cook sailed past and named Double Island Point at the northern end of Cooloola. It was not until 1842, that Governor Gipps sent Andrew Petrie to explore this area and this paved the way for resource use of a magnificent area known as the Kin Kin Scrubs - where today, only a small remnant of this vast rainforest is left.