Townsville, the home of Castle Hill and the famed Goat Track is full of fitness fanatics. Phrases like I do the Hill after work every day are common place around here. Of course the response to this statement is often The Goat Track or the Road? Townsvillians often refer to any track on the hill as the Goat track but there are four different tracks.
Cutheringa the aboriginal name for Castle Hill, was also the name of the 1136m long track we chose to walk.
Pink flowering grasses lined the path and wattle trees were in full bloom.
Looking up toward the granite outcrop of Castle Hill. The track leads to the base of the rock face and then slides around it – you won’t need to climb the rock face.
The views from the track are superb and feature Magnetic Island, City, Port and Ocean Views.
This wild passionfruit, a native to South America grows readily in North Queensland. As kids we had fun squeezing the green fruit until they popped. Only eat the ripe orange fruit as the green is poisonous. The fruit are hidden inside the hairy outer layer.
This flowering shrub was prolific.
Burdekin Plums littered the ground, fallen to the track from the trees above. Native to tropical Queensland and Papua New Guinea, it is extremely hardy surviving long periods without water, which is just as well because the hill is brown and barren looking most of the year.
The track starts to hug the base of the rock face.
A place to rest and take in the views of Townsville City, Ross Creek and the industrial Port Area. The landmass in the background is Cape Cleveland not Magnetic Island.
Views across Townsville to Mt. Stuart from the top of the track.
Other smaller walks depart from the summit carpark.
The view across the suburb of North Ward to Magnetic Island.
I was unfit when we did this walk and it took one hour with lots of photo stops. It would possibly take most people 30 minutes to walk. Watch out for joggers on the tracks as well to avert accidents. Next week I will share photos from the walk down via the bitumen road which was originally for vehicles but in reality is shared nowadays with walkers/joggers.
Read about more fun things to do in Townsville.
Things to Know.
The tracks and road are free to use.
Early morning and late afternoon are the best times to walk the hill.
If the weather is hot you may need a water bottle but there are water coolers at the summit.
A hat and sunscreen may be required.
The track is very rough in places with exposed tree roots, rocks and washed out areas. Snakes would be a possibility also.