The CREB Track

THROUGH THE DAINTREE – PART I

Photos by Beardy, Esjay, Ben & Dan

Always Sunny


Escaping a Sydney winter in search of warmer weather, we headed for Far North Queensland, or, more specifically, the Daintree Rainforest, and 4 days of top-notch riding.


Heading to a top tourist destination can be both a blessing and a curse; on the one hand, you are guaranteed to see some eye-bleedingly beautiful sights (especially in that part of Australia). On the other hand you will not exactly be heading off the beaten track. At least, not without some extra effort.


In that spirit, we built our route around two major tracks between Cairns and Cooktown that were guaranteed to be tour bus-free – the CREB and Bloomfield Tracks.


Truthfully, we did allow ourselves a little glamorous pampering (when in Rome...) - spending our first night in the Del Boca Vista of Far North Queensland, Peppers of Palm Cove. It wasn’t particularly wild (at first), however we soon got into the swing of things - primarily at the pool bar.

To Daintree


The first day wasn’t particularly challenging, consisting of just over 100km from Palm Cove to the town of Daintree, along the bitumen of the coastal Captain Cook Highway. We’d chosen to do things this way in order to have a whole day to tackle the CREB (Cairns Regional Electricity Board) Track, a challenging and isolated, often impassable, track linking the town of Daintree to the Bloomfield track near Wujal Wujal.

Coupla' Beers


We arrived at Daintree in the midst of ‘golden hour’. Accordingly, we raided the esky in the 4WD, cracked open a beer each, and set off with cameras to see if we could find any crocs loitering around the boat ramp of the Riverview Caravan Park.

Coffee then CREB


Incredibly steep gradients, and a soft clay surface, make the CREB track impenetrable for much of the year. Rain quickly closes the track to all but the most serious of 4WDers, while the wet season shuts it down completely.

The track itself follows ancient Aboriginal foot trails, and was later cut as the service access track for the old powerline to Cooktown. In other words, this is about as rough as a trail gets.

We knew it was going to be a solid day, with 71 continuous kilometers of barely-rideable clay. Accordingly, we doubled-down on a solid breakfast and coffees before rolling out.

Roaring Meg


Nearing the end of the CREB track is the turn off to Roaring Meg Falls. Situated at the head of the Bloomfield River, the stunning falls cascade over large, smooth, white boulders into the river below - before flowing to the deep gorge further downstream. A sacred women's area, men are forbidden from visiting the top of the falls, and no photography is allowed. Out of respect to the Eastern Kuku Yalanji (Buru) people, the traditional landowners, we left only with memories.

Lions Den Hotel


To celebrate the end of our eventful day on the CREB Track, we made sure we wound up at the famous Northern Queensland pub, otherwise known as the Lions Den. A couple of stranded backpackers served up a round of frosty Milton Mangoes, as we settled in for a meal and some chit-chat with the locals – all offering similar horror stories of their adventures on the CREB track, and forewarning us of the similarly-nightmarish gradients we could expect the next day, along the Bloomfield Track.
DAYS

2

DISTANCE

180km

ELEV GAIN

3181m

ELEV MAX

514m

More from The Daintree


Choose from any of the two parts in our Through The Daintree adventure, or the Road Book, for all the maps & information you need to get out and explore the area yourself.
PART II - THE BLOOMFIELD TRACK. 
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MAPS & INFORMATION.  
READ MORE
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Over Yonder is adventure by bicycle - and cyclocross racing on the side. Curated for travellers, explorers & outdoor aficionados. Brought to you by a thirst for the unknown.

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