Saddle Mountain Summit Hike – Cairns Hiking Guide – We Seek Travel Blog

Saddle Mountain Cairns is a summit mountaineering path positioned between Kuranda and Smithfield, north of Cairns. Learn on for the whole information to mountaineering the Saddle Mountain path from Smithfield.

Cairns is a severe contender for the title of Australia’s greatest mountaineering and bushwalking hubs. Its jagged, tropical shoreline presents epic ocean and reef views to anybody eager on gaining some altitude. On prime of that, the traditional rainforests make up among the most scenic trails in Australia.

On this fast information, I’ll present info on mountaineering to the radar station on the summit of Saddle Mountain Cairns. I’ll additionally throw in some photographs that I hope will encourage you to lace up and hit the path!

The place is Saddle Mountain?

Saddle Mountain is a tropical peak on the MacAlister Vary close to Cairns in Far North Queensland. The mountain spreads over the Smithfield Conservation Park and the Kuranda Nationwide Park.

The Saddle Mountain hike begins in Smithfield Conservation Park on the Northern Seashores, simply 15 kilometres from Cairns. You’ll be able to entry this park from three factors; James Cook dinner College free automotive park, the top of McGregor Highway (close to AJ Hacket) and a carpark proper off the Bruce Freeway (pinned beneath).

In case you don’t have your individual automotive, there are public buses operating from Cairns and The Seashores that cease at James Cook dinner College, which is true beside the park.

GPS Coordinates: 16°49’00.1″S 145°41’28.9″E

RELATED POST: 14 Superior Issues to do in Kuranda, Australia

The way to Get to the Saddle Mountain Path

Confusingly, there are a number of trailheads that present entry to the Saddle Mountain summit path. It is because the foothills are discovered throughout the Smithfield Conservation Park, an intricate net of mountaineering trails and mountain bike tracks.

To make issues easy, begin on the “Ring Highway” observe, accessible from all entry factors to the park talked about above.

For the aim of this submit, I’ll element what I imagine to be probably the most simple path to the summit. Nonetheless, in the event you’re an area, otherwise you’re eager on exploring the opposite tracks, use the map beneath to design your individual route.


Extra Hikes: Kahlpahlim Rock Hike | Glacier Rock Lookout | White Rock Lookout

Map and GPX

Under I’ve included a GPX file that I generated utilizing my Garmin GPS watch. You’ll be able to obtain the file by clicking the hyperlink and add it to your watch or telephone that can assist you navigate.

GPX File: Obtain

My Strava: Go to

Smithfield Conservation Park Path Map

Additionally, right here’s the Smithfield bike path map. That is helpful if you wish to plan another path to the beginning of the summit observe.

The Saddle Mountain Hike Cairns – Mountaineering Information

Elevation: 640 M AMSL (670 M whole elevation achieve)

Problem: Tough (steep and muddy)

In case you’re following my GPS observe, then the beginning of the Saddle Mountain hike begins simply off the Bruce Freeway beside James Cook dinner College (map pin above).

From right here, park your automotive and observe the vast, unsealed observe on the left and stroll by way of the steel gates. (Don’t take the steeper street to the fitting). You at the moment are on the “Ring Highway” observe. Comply with this across the fringe of the park till you attain a carpark and steel bridge.

Proceed previous the bridge till you come to a fork to the “Downhill Entry Observe”. That is the place the steep climb begins.

Fork to Downhill Entry Observe

Comply with the Downhill Entry Observe because it snakes its manner up the mountain. Ultimately, you’ll come to a pointy switchback with an unmissable tree that’s raised up, nearly like an island in entrance of you.

“Island Tree”

The Saddle Mountain summit observe begins simply behind this island tree and is straightforward to overlook in the event you don’t preserve a watch out.

The Saddle Mountain Path

When you attain the a lot narrower Saddle Mountain path, you’ve already lined half of the gap and climbed half of the elevation. Nonetheless, this second half is way muddier and steeper. Attending to the summit from this level may be very simple; simply be sure to maintain a watch out for snakes basking on the observe.

Discovered this Carpet Python blocking the already slim observe


The Cairns Radar Station

Atop Saddle Mountain sits the Cairns Climate Radar Station. You’ll see the fence when you attain the highest. It’s doable to stroll all the way in which across the station, however a faster route is to take the observe to the fitting simply behind the station. This results in a big rock platform that provides nice views of the Northern Seashores.


View From The High

The views from the Saddle Mountain summit are among the greatest within the space. The wanting north, the crest of the MacAlister Vary attracts a line to the Daintree, inspiring a picture of a wind-stoked wave unable to interrupt over deep water.

From the rock platform, it’s also possible to see Double Island and the suburbs of the Northern Seashores, together with Kawarra Seashore, Trinity Seashore and Clifton Seashore. In case you stroll round somewhat additional alongside the fence line, you’ll get views of Kuranda Nationwide Park and the Tablelands past.

When you’ve taken time to benefit from the view, proceed down on the identical observe to return.


Extra Cairns Mountaineering Guides and Journey Concepts

I hope this fast information to mountaineering the Saddle Mountain path close to Cairns has been helpful. In case you’re eager on exploring just a few extra hikes within the space, take a look at the listing beneath. In any other case, why not take a look at this complete information to Cairns’ greatest waterfalls, Cairns’ greatest mountaineering trails or this information to one of the best issues to do in Cairns.


For a listing of all my advisable images gear (together with what I take advantage of and why) take a look at my information to digicam gear for journey.

In case you’d like to make use of any of the images on this web site, please go to my licensing web page to learn the way. I additionally promote skilled fine-art prints, go to my Print Retailer or contact me straight for customs prints of any pictures on We Search Journey.


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