Location - Paluma Range National Park, Queensland, Australia
Difficulty - Easy, grade 3
Distance - 3 kilometres return
Time - 1 hour return
Gorge Falls and Rope Falls are both beautiful waterfalls located at the base of Mount Halifax in Paluma Range National Park. There are becoming increasingly popular due to the ease of access and are nice places to relax and enjoy a refreshing swim in the inviting pools. You can definitely spend a fair bit of time at these falls, especially if you're hot and sweaty and in need of a refreshing swim.
Much of the bushwalk at lower altitudes is in or alongside a rocky and boulder strewn jungle creek. Along the way there are some small gorges, waterfalls, and cascades. Note that in some parts of the year there may be no flowing water in the creek.
Drive North from Townsville along the Bruce Highway to the Balgal beach turnoff approximately 50 km. Before the Rollingstone bridge, turn left (west) onto Pace's Road, drive until you reach a gate and the log book sign-in point for the start. Park on the roadside outside of the gate. Vehicles are not to proceed through Pace's gate as it's private property. Note that there are no facilities.
Paces gate to Gorge Falls – 1.4 km, 30 minutes
Walk through the gate and along the dirt road beside fence line. The trail then turns into cross-country, single-track and is easy walking. Before long, you emerge onto another dirt road where you take a right to the end. This was the original car park. Continue onto Gorge Falls via the rough walking track. There is also a swimming pool just below the gorge. Gorge Falls has a large pool suitable for swimming most of the year.
Gorge Falls to Rope Falls (elevation 174 metres) – 10 minutes.
After the wet season, there is a nice pool and waterfall here. Enjoy a swim before turning around. Scramble up right side rock face, there are ropes in place to assist.
The trail then continues onto the summit of Mount Halifax via Loop Falls and Bridal Falls.
As these trails become increasingly popular, we will need to be more diligent in practicing our Leave No Trace philosophy. Please take all everything back home with you. If you find rubbish, please pick it up and hike it out. Let's take only photos (and other people's rubbish) and leave only footprints (plus a cleaner environment).