Cockatoo Creek/Rock Hike

Bowling Green National Park is one of our preferred adventuring spots throughout the warmer months of the year and given the above average temperatures, we decided to abandon our plans of visiting Saddle Mountain and make a dash for Cockatoo Rock!

The mosquitoes are still in plague proportions in the lower sections of the National Park after the recent rains and at times, there was literally a ‘mosquito haze’ following the group as we made our way up Cockatoo Creek and gained elevation.

The water levels in Cockatoo Creek were above average for this time of year after the recent rains. We were again able to witness the beauty this area has to offer all year round, including the numerous waterfalls, swimming holes and some spectacular boulder formations as we gained elevation.

As we diverted out of Cockatoo Creek and started the climb to Cockatoo Rock, the humidity was evident, and we were all feeling it! There was little or no breeze and the humid and steamy conditions made for a grueling, steep bush bash through the damp, thick and millipede filled scrub.

By the time we walked out onto Cockatoo Rock, at 520 metres elevation, we were spent! To my surprise, one of our adventurers had bought up a watermelon with an ice pack to keep it cold! We all enjoyed some cold watermelon on the top of Cockatoo Rock on a humid and steamy February Day overlooking the North Queensland coastline and adjacent National Park and areas – How awesome is that?!

Given the temperature and the fact we were on an exposed boulder formation, we stopped for a break and some happy snaps, before heading down.

As we broke out of the scrub back into Cockatoo Creek, we enjoyed a long swim under one of our favourite waterfalls. Laying in the cool, fresh rainforest water is no doubt something we had all been looking forward to for a fair while!


When adventuring in the outdoors, you need to be prepared and ready for whatever mother nature throws at you, and this day was no different. As we made our way back down Cockatoo Creek, spotting numerous snakes including red bellied black snakes and brown snakes, out of nowhere came the rain…and the stifling heat and humidity that comes after decent rain on an already warm and sticky day.

This slowed our pace significantly, but we managed to make some creek bank and cross-country diversions instead of attempting to navigate the slippery, rocky creek line.

As we made our way through the Alligator Creek camping area, you could certainly tell we’d had a long day hiking and exploring a remote section of the national park in somewhat unfavourable conditions – much to the amusement of the general public who were out in numbers given the warm weather.

We will be sure to visit this beauty again soon. The views from Cockatoo Rock and the Cockatoo Creek Line were well worth the effort! Fun, Fitness, Friendship and Community – Join Townsville Hike and Explore on our Next Adventure!

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