12 4WD Tracks Close To Brisbane That You Must Try!

Source: Fleet Crew

Who doesn’t enjoy a day out 4×4 ing so I investigated some local day tracks and came across a whole host of places to explore close to Brisbane. I’ve done the research for you and compiled a list of 12 fantastic tracks ranging in difficulty. It doesn’t matter if you are a  newbie or a seasoned off-roader there are many great tracks to choose from.

Whether you are after a day out or a camping trip to adventure through forests and dunes there is something for everyone and surprisingly close, all within 40km to 300km from Brisbane. For the more challenging tracks just remember to bring along your safety and recovery equipment its always best to be well prepared.

Before you continue, If your new to 4wd and offroading or are not sure what equipment to take out with you on your adventures, make sure to check out the Off Road Aussies Essential 4×4 Equipment List where I have taken the time to review and recommend the equipment I use. If y9u kit yourself out correctly you will be able to tackle everything that your new adventures will throw at you.

Here are some of the tracks around Brisbane (not in any particular order):

  1. North Stradbroke Island
  2. Keyhole Track
  3. Mount Mee (D’Aguilar NationalPark)
  4. Moreton Island
  5. Condamine River Track
  6. Landcruiser Mountain Park
  7. The Rainforest Way
  8. Cooloola’s Coloured Sand
  9. Jimna State Forest, Imbil State Forest and Conondale National Park
  10. Janowen Hills 4wd Park
  11. Sundown National Park
  12. Lennox Head Beach

North Stradbroke Island

Distance from Brisbane: 90km

Credit: Hema Maps

Trek Length: N/A

Difficulty: Easy-Hard (Varying Tracks)

Terrain: Sand, Dunes, Beach, Forest

Recommended time: 1 day – Weekender

PERMIT REQUIRED (4WD and Camping)

North Stradbroke Island is one of the three famous sand dune islands just off the coast of Queensland. It is known as ‘Straddie’ by the locals and is a favourite destination among 4 wheel-drivers. There is a variety of trails for different skill levels, so whether you are a newbie or an experienced driver, North Stradbroke Island will have something for you! This destination is great for a day trip to a weekend away with friends, family and even the littlest adventurer.

From the lush forests to powdery beaches, this destination is a stunner. Be sure to book camping in advance particularly during school holidays due to its popularity as a family destination.

To get to the island head to Cleveland which is a 50minute drive East of Brisbane. Then jump on the Stradbroke Ferry, this takes roughly 45 minutes. There is something for everyone from fishing to camping, snorkelling and bushwalking, you are bound to find an adventure while exploring this beautiful island and perhaps even spot migrating whales! Imagine that!

You can learn more about The North Stradbroke Island By Going To There Website Here

Keyhole Track

Distance from Brisbane: 90km

Credit: North Strad Broke Island

Trek Length: 23km

Difficulty: Moderate-Hard

Terrain: plants, bush, lakes, clay/dirt

Recommended time: 1 Day

PERMIT REQUIRED (4WD and Camping)

Adventures are packed full of exploring and discovering beyond. If you stray behind the dunes on North Stradbroke Island you’ll discover Fisherman’s Road, also known as Number Plate Crusher. Travelling through the heath-lands and marshlands, while passing lakes and lagoons, is an adventure in itself.  At times you could make your way through some very deep bog holes and it is recommended that your vehicle has sufficient ground clearance and a snorkel fitted due to potential steep-drop offs. Remember to walk a water crossing beforehand!

There is some great fishing in the area especially when the tailor and whiting are running along Main Beach. Not to mention the scenic spots for picnics and wildlife watching which is a spectacular sight early mornings and late afternoons.

The entry/exit of this track is from two points, either the south end via Tarzi Road or the north end by Main Beach. If you are exiting from Main Beach, make sure you plan it out beforehand with the tide. You travel down a creek bed which becomes very narrow in some areas and areas that erode during flood periods.

You can learn more about The Keyhole Track By Going To There Website Here

Mount Mee (D’Aguilar National Park)

Distance from Brisbane: 57km

Credit: Tough Toys

Trek Length: 60km

Difficulty: Easy-Hard (Varying tracks)

Terrain: creeks, forest, dirt, clay

Recommended time: 1 day – Weekender

This is one of the best 4WD Tracks close to Brisbane. Mount Mee is just over an hour North from the CBD and has a great variety of tracks for all 4WD abilities You don’t require a permit to explore this area, however, this is subject o change so if there is a sign saying otherwise make sure you have a permit or don’t enter.

Although you can do this trip in a day, there is the possibility of camping for an overnight stay or even a weekender. You can find something for everyone to do, from taking in the beautiful scenery to a variety of outdoor activities.

If you are a beginner and still learning it is advised you stick to the main 4WD tracks, particularly in dry conditions. There are smaller off-road treks that range in difficulty from moderate to difficult. When travelling along the easy forest trails you will be treated to spectacular views of waterfalls, creeks, pools, rainforests and historical landmarks.

Recommended trek to enter D’Aguilar National Park through Lacey’s Creek Road and then exit via Rasmussen Road at the Archer camping area. If there has been heavy rain be sure to double check road conditions and any park alerts.

You can learn more about The Mount Mee By Going To There Website Here

Moreton Island

Distance from Brisbane: 40km

Credit: QLD 4WD Treks

Trek Length: 38km

Difficulty: easy – difficult (Varying Tracks)

Terrain: bush, beach, dunes, sand

Recommended time: 1 Day – Weekender

For an exciting day out or even a weekend away you can drive down to the Port of Brisbane and board a MICAT Ferry over to Moreton Island. There is a variety of tracks here and other activities such as swimming, fishing, camping and picture perfect picnics areas. You can pretty much drive around the whole island, except for a few bypass tracks near towns and camping grounds.

Moreton Island was originally called Moorgumpin (Indigenous name), which means ‘place of sand- hills’.This island has a rich history of cultural heritage while being surrounded by beautiful scenery and a variety of wildlife. This island can have quiet soft sand, so be sure to bring your safety and recovery gear. Most 4-wheel drivers reduce their tire pressure to suit the conditions while on the ferry over, so you are ready to go!

You can learn more about Moreton Island By Going To There Website Here

Condamine River Track (Koreelah National Park)

Distance from Brisbane: 140km

Credit: Offroad Adventure Show

Trek Length: 85km

Difficulty: moderate – hard

Terrain: river crossings, rocks, mud, forest

Recommended time: Overnight – Weekend

If you’re looking for a bit of a challenge, especially those looking at gaining experience in river crossings, you should not miss out on the Condamine River Track. This is an old bullock wagon track that crosses the Condamine River 14 times! There’s a lot of river crossing experience to gain here, but remember to walk the crossing beforehand. This track is only accessible when the weather conditions are dry as the river can cause flooding. The track can be closed if there have been heavy rains, so be sure to check in advance.

Leading through rainforest and valleys, this track has magnificent views; you might even get to spot a platypus! A highlight is the Queen Mary Falls, which is a 400m waterfall. Otherwise, there is Daggs Falls, Dolly on the Rock and Paddy’s Knob which are well worth a stop. Not to mention there are plenty of swimming holes and picnic areas. If you want to camp, best to book in advance as the camping spots are limited at Queen Mary Falls (caravan park) or Koreelah Creek Campground.

You can learn more about The Condamine River Track By Going To There Website Here

Landcruiser Mountain Park

Distance from Brisbane: 158km

Credit: North Brisbane 4WD Club

Trek Length: 200km

Difficulty: Easy-Hard

Terrain: water crossings, deep gullies, bush, mud

Recommended time: Overnight – Weekend

Landcruiser Mountain Park is specifically designed for camping and off-road enthusiasts located near Jimna State Forest. There are 10,000 acres of wilderness suitable for both amateurs and professionals. You can trek through water crossings and deep gullies and camp anywhere on the property choosing one of the shady grassed camp areas.

This is Queensland’s first private wilderness park which is a working cattle property. It is rated one of the top 10 areas in southeast Queensland to camp. There is an abundance of wildlife in the area and some of the outdoor activities include freshwater fishing, swimming, bushwalking etc. It is an off-roaders dream location.

You can learn more about The Landcruiser Mountain Park By Going To There Website Here

The Rainforest Way

Distance from Brisbane: 65km

Credit: I-Venture Club

Trek Length: 4km

Difficulty: Easy-Moderate

Terrain: Rainforest, dirt

Recommended time: 1 Day – Overnight

For an easy quick drive with some gorgeous scenery, you don’t want to miss The Rainforest Way. This beautiful track skirts the rims of ancient volcanoes through the forest. There is access to camping areas, many walking trails and lookouts. This is one of the most scenic tracks in the area.

Heading from Beaudesert approx 65km Southwest of Brisbane, an easy drive follows along Mount Lindsey Highway. After leaving the highway on Innisplain Road, take the dirt detour under the railway bridge to your left which crosses Running Creek several times before re-joining the tar.

You can learn more about The Rainforest Way By Going To There Website Here

Cooloola’s Coloured Sands

Distance from Brisbane: 150km

Credit: Hema Maps

Trek Length: 16km

Difficulty: Moderate-Hard

Terrain: beach, sand

Recommended time: Overnight – Week

PERMIT REQUIRED

This is a great destination for those who love the sun and the sand. The Cooloola’s Coloured Sands has an estimated 72 different hues. I wonder how many you would be able to pick out. On one side there are the gorgeous towering cliffs and to the other side, the wide open ocean and crashing waves.

Mudlo has earned the title ‘The Million Dollar Car Wash’ as it has an average of 1 vehicle per week being lost to the tide. Be sure to check the tide with your journey and avoid getting stuck. There is an alternative route if the tide is high, so you can still get around. The Carlo Sand Bowl stretches more than 15 Hectares, which is a great opportunity to gain some extra sand driving experience.

From Brisbane head 126km North to Cooroy. Cross the Noosa River on the vehicle barge and then continue towards the beach. This can be added to a Fraser Island Trip via Inskip Point, or camp along the areas of Teewah Beach camping zone or at Freshwater Campground. Make sure to book ahead, especially during the holidays.

You can learn more about The Cooloola’s Coloured Sand By Going To There Website Here

Jimna State Forest, Imbil State Forest and Conondale National Park

 Distance from Brisbane: 140km

Credit: Hema Maps

Trek Length: Varies depending on the track

Difficulty: Easy-Hard

Terrain: rainforest, boulders, rocks, river crossings etc

Recommended time: Week (if doing all three parks)

The Conondale National Park combined with Jimna State Forest and Imbil State Forest is the perfect location for a week away. They are all within 150km of each other but if you are only wanting a shorter trip, you can always visit just one of these locations. These are great options for various tracks for ranging skill sets.

Jimna State Forest has well-maintained fire trails with a variety of steep sections and river crossings. Don’t forget about the Jimna Fire Tower which is an Australian icon as it is the tallest fire tower of its type in the Southern Hemisphere. Imbil has an amazing rainforest to adventure through with a few river crossings and decent amounts of mud. Last but not least, you have the Conondale National Park, it is recommended that you have a 4WD with high clearance ground clearance. Conondale has some beautiful rainforest scenery with boulders and creeks to tackle.

Full of activities from walking and hiking trails to fishing, mountain biking and horse riding, you can experience these gorgeous views and abundant wildlife. Throughout all 3 parks there are campsites, however, if you are after a bed Kilcoy is 40kms away from Jimna and Imbil, while Kenilworth is just 15km from Conondale.

You can learn more about The Conondale National Park By Going To There Website Here

Janowen Hills 4wd Park

Distance from Brisbane: 160km

Credit: Explorer 4×4

Trek Length: Varies on each track

Difficulty: Easy-Hard

Terrain: rocky gullies, hilly terrain

Recommended time: Overnight – Week

Janowen Hills 4WD Park is a favourite amongst the 4WD community. It has a variety of treks for those beginning to those who are experienced and looking for a challenge. This is perfect for you and your mates to go out on an off-road holiday adventuring across 1000 acres of rocky gullies and hilly terrain.

There are approximately 80 established tracks, so you won’t run out of tracks to conquer. Just remember to bring a friend or 2 with a 4WD as there is a buddy system in place to keep everyone safe. You can get a good few days of fun out of this area while camping by the creek side. Just remember to bring along the safety and recovery equipment.

You can learn more about The Janowen Hills 4WD Park By Going To There Website Here

Sundown National Park

 Distance from Brisbane: 300km

Credit: ExplorOz

Trek Length: 20km

Difficulty: Hard

Terrain: Rocky. Steep Gorges, River

Recommended time: 2 Days – Week

If you are looking for something a bit more remote, the Sundown National Park is your go to. This is an ideal family location with a number of camping options. During Winter is the best time to take on this dry wilderness with amazing views over the Severn River. You can enjoy fishing, kayaking, hiking and swimming, so there is something for everyone.

Perfect for a family weekend away, remember to bring the supplies you need, especially your recovery gear, just in case you get stuck in a rut! Don’t forget to visit Red Rock Gorge!

You can learn more about The Sundown National Park By Going To There Website Here

Lennox Head Beach

 Distance from Brisbane: 190km

Credit: TripAdvisor

Trek Length: 2-10km

Difficulty: Easy

Terrain: Beach, Sand

Recommended time: Day Trip

For a short day trip adventure to enjoy the sun and surf with the family and friends, you can’t go wrong with Lennox Head Beach. It is an easy drive, great for practising your sand driving skills. Watch the kids play in the sand and water, drive along the beach, set up a picnic all surrounded by the beauty of nature, it couldn’t get better than this!

Remember to plan your journey and watch out for the tide. At high tide and when a storm is coming in certain places along the beach are unreachable and you most certainly don’t want to get stuck!

You can learn more about The Lennox Head Beach By Going To There Website Here

Extra Tracks

 A few other destinations to visit worth mentioning are:

  • Nightcap National Park: 220km from Brisbane for those after an easy drive with river crossings and trekking the through the mud.
  • 10 Mile Beach: 270km from Brisbane, great for a family day out adventuring with sand driving and with the possibility for a night out camping at Black Rock Camp.
  • Duck Creek Road (Lamington National Park): 69km from Brisbane and a favourite among off-roaders. Currently, it is closed due to significant damage, keep an eye out though – you won’t want to miss this one when it’s open.

Related Questions

How do I get a permit?

To get a permit in Brisbane you can call 13 74 68, contact your local Queensland Parks And Wildlife Service or even apply online. If you are unsure if you need one be sure to contact them, and don’t forget if you are camping you may need a permit for that too!

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