6 epic Outback gorges you didn’t know were on your bucket list
While Outback Queensland may have you thinking endless sunburnt country and sweeping arid plains (cheers, Dorothea Mackellar); did you know our big red backyard is also home to some of the most incredible gorges? Yes, the gorge game is strong with this one.
From jaw-dropping infinity pools overlooking 135 million years of sedimentation in the making to Australia’s ‘Little Grand Canyon’ and our most unique SUP expedition, here are 6 Outback gorges you need to tick off your bucket list, stat.
Oh my gorge, people, hold onto your Akubras.
1. COBBOLD GORGE, GULF SAVANNAH
Deep in the heart of the Gulf Savannah is a hidden outback oasis waiting to be explored. Enter, Cobbold Gorge.
Formed 135 million years ago, these rugged sandstone cliffs stand up to 30m tall and are nothing short of breathtaking.
The best way to experience this Outback stunner is to venture by boat through the waving maze of cliffs. Let Cobbold Gorge Tours take you there.
Plus, would you take a look at that infinity pool! Not only will you be treated to one helluva view, but this watering hole is decked out with a bar too, making it Outback Queensland’s first swim-up bar!
2. PORCUPINE GORGE, PORCUPINE GORGE NATIONAL PARK
Coined Australia’s ‘Little Grand Canyon,’ it’s not hard to see what makes Porcupine Gorge, about 60km north of Hughenden, so #bucketlist-worthy.
Complete with towering sandstone cliffs, lush vine-forest fringing Porcupine Creek and a wondrous canyon that reveals sedimentary rocks dating back hundreds of millions of years, this Outback banger is not to be missed.
Take it from us, the best spot to kick back is Pyramid Lookout; you can camp here, and it’s an easy 30-minute walk into the gorge. YAS, you can actually walk all the way into the gorge.
3. LAWN HILL GORGE, BOODJAMULLA NATIONAL PARK
No. Words. Needed.
But we’ll give you a lil’ background on this oh-my-gorge stunner.
Looking for an Outback, off-road adventure that will treat you to epic star-gazing, adorable wildlife encounters, and a jaw-dropping view of mirror-like waters framed by sandstone cliffs? (Come on, who isn’t?)
Pro Tip: Take to the water and paddle through this gorge with a canoe or SUP to appreciate the magnitude of Boodjamulla’s natural beauty.
P.S. Don’t forget to stop by the World Heritage-listed Riversleigh Fossil Fields on the way here!
4. HELL HOLE GORGE, HELL HOLE GORGE NATIONAL PARK
Well, you gorge-ous people, it looks like we’re all going to Hell… Hole Gorge then!
If this is hell, we’d like a one-way ticket there. The deep gorges – with vertical cliffs reaching up to 45m – rugged gullies and waterholes dotted throughout Hell Hole Gorge in the Quilpie Shire make for one alluring and exhilarating exploration. A 4WD is an absolute must.
Please note: You have to drive through a few working pastoral properties to access Hell Hole Gorge, so keep watch for stock on un-fenced roads and leave gates as you find them.
5. ROBINSON GORGE, EXPEDITION NATIONAL PARK
You’ll feel small in the face of nature when you venture to Robinson Gorge, 90km north-west of Taroom.
Covered in lush, open eucalypt forest, the gorge stretches 14km, rising to 100m in parts! Safety first, y’all: This park is accessible only to 4WD/AWD vehicles during dry periods. In the wet season… Don’t even think about it.
6. CARNARVON GORGE, CARNARVON NATIONAL PARK
Gorges don’t come more epic than this one. Climb over boulders, marvel at the colours of sandstone cliffs, traipse through quiet eucalypt and cabbage palm forests and lose yourself in the untamed wilderness of Carnarvon Gorge.
If you aren’t feeling like you’ve stepped straight into dinosaur country, then you might want to check your pulse.
WHO’S READY TO GO CHASING GORGES IN OUTBACK QUEENSLAND?