Idalia National Park
Set in the Gowan Range in central western Queensland, Idalia National Park is a dry, remote wilderness. Although the park encompasses the headwaters of the Bulloo River and the tributaries of the Barcoo River, the waterways have wide, sandy beds that are usually dry, except following big rains. There are a number of pastoral relics, including Old Idalia, the site of an abandoned musterer’s hut and stockyards. Visitors must be self-reliant.
Most of the park supports vast tracts of mulga shrublands, but there are also open woodlands of bimble box and silver-leaved ironbark near the Bulloo River, and river red gums lining the waterways. Dawson gums and lancewood (Acacia sp.) grow on the Gowan Range escarpment. Idalia is a refuge for the yellow-footed rock-wallaby, whose numbers here have been devastated by feral animals, and the bridled nailtail wallaby, another endangered species. There are also western grey and red kangaroos, wallaroos, black-striped wallabies and koalas. Among the birds are ﬁnches, sulphur-crested cockatoos, eastern ringnecks, and wedge-tailed eagles.
There are several marked walking trails including Emmet Pocket walk (4.4 km return, 23 hours, difficult), offering panoramic views over the northern end of the park; Bullock Gorge walk (2.7 km return, 1–2 hours); and Old Idalia ruins to Wave Rock walk (1.2 km return, 1–2 hours), leading to a wave-shaped cliff overhang with stunning views.
From the information centre, a signposted self-guided drive (14 km) leads to Monks Tank. From Monks Tank, a drive (4.3 km) leads to the colourful sandstone rock formations of Rainbow Gorge, and a longer drive (8.9 km) ends at a shady gorge known as Murphys' Rockhole.
One bush campsite (pit toilets); permit and fees apply
Location and access
893 km west of Brisbane; 113 km south-west of Blackall via Yaraka Rd and Idalia–Benlidi Rd (4WD only in wet weather)
NPRSR 13 7468
144 000 ha
Blackall (07) 4657 4637