Location - Bowling Green Bay National Park, Queensland, Australia
Grade - 5, difficult, recommended for experienced bushwalkers only
Distance - ~10 km return, depending on route
Time - 6-10 hours return
Elevation gain - ~1200 m
Located in the Mount Surround area (near Giru), it's yet another beautiful spot inside Cape Bowling Green National Park. Just of the highway, you'll find Double Creek with fresh water running straight down from the Elliot Massif, this is a perfect place for a summer's weekend day trip. A great multi-day circuit is going up Double Creek to Sharp Elliot, across to The Shoulder and down Spring Creek. Double Creek was a favourite with Townsville Bushwalking Club in the 80s and early 90s. They walked up the southern creek for a couple of hours and then crossed over the ridgeline to the northern creek (Double Creek), descending down the creek to finish at the swimming hole.
Once was a popular camping retreat known as Pangola Park by locals, it was a caravan park that allowed public access to that swimming hole and national park. Apparently, crippling insurance costs forced Pangola Park to close in the early 90s.
Look for the creek signage on the highway. Double Creek waterhole next to the road is still a nice area to swim. Remember to take your rubbish home with you.
With permission, take the track until you reach Pangola Falls on Double Creek. Walk around right side of Pangola Falls and then to the left past the next small falls. Continue rock hopping up the creek until you reach Double Gorge. The gorge is easily passed on the right side.
Continue ascending the creek to the next gorge and scramble up the boulder field exit the gorge on the left before the cliff. Continue around past the gorge and back down into the creek.
Rock hop up the creek more to arrive at Palm Falls. Climb up and around the falls (the right seems to be easier).
If summiting Sharp Elliot, ascend the creek until you reach the main ridgeline and then up towards the summit.
Sharp Elliot (1,183 m)
The summit was damaged by cyclone, like some of the other mountain peaks in the area, and now vines and bramble run rampant. A rock marks the summit and a nearby rock provides glimpses out to Giru on a clear day.
This interactive map will give you an idea of the routes that can be taken - a combination of ridgelines and creeks.
Note that this area is best accessed via private property and prior permission needs to be granted. Gimpie Gimpie (Stinging tree) is present in this area.Cover photo by Steven Dangaard.