Byfield National Park and Conservation Park
Byfield National Park is approximately one hour from North Rockhampton and 30 minutes from Yeppoon. The park has three access points. A four-wheel-drive is needed throughout the main section and to access Byfield Conservation Park.
Access via Byfield State Forest
Byfield State Forest is a 30 minute drive north of Yeppoon via the sealed Yeppoon-Byfield Road. When in the State forest, follow the sign posts along the unsealed road to Waterpark Creek visitor area. Drive with caution as trucks carrying timber share State forest roads.
The entrance to Byfield National Park is in Byfield State Forest, 9.8km east of the Waterpark Creek visitor area. A four-wheel-drive is needed from this point.
The 15km soft sand track from the park entrance to the coast may take more than one hour. Sand driving experience is essential to drive safely in the soft sand and with minimal impact. You may access all sand tracks within the park, except those marked “ No vehicle access” or “Authorised vehicles only”. To assist with navigation, all intersections have numbered markers as shown on the Byfield National Park map.
Access via Sandy Point Section
Sandy Point carpark is accessible in conventional vehicles. Travel 5km north of Yeppoon and turn right (eastward) at the roundabout. Continue for 10km on a sealed road past Rydges Resort to the T-junction. Turn right and follow the gravel road for 10km to Sandy Point. You can reach the beach via a track from the carpark. Four-wheel-drive and a beach permit are required to access the beach by vehicle.
Access via Waterpark Point
Waterpark Point is part of Byfield National Park on the northern side of Corio Bay. This headland is only accessible by boat. Small boats can launch from the beach in the Sandy Point Section, as there is no formal boat ramp. A council beach permit is required for vehicle access. A council boat ramp is also available at Corbetts Landing on Waterpark Creek.
Byfield Conservation Park
Five Rocks visitor area includes a campground and picnic area. It is accessed through Byfield National Park and requires a four-wheel-drive.
Toilets large enough for wheelchairs are provided in Five Rocks visitor area in Byfield Conservation Park. Assistance is required as it is sandy, there is a step and the toilets currently do not have railings.
Byfield National Park stretches over 15,000ha. Massive parabolic sand dunes, the oldest reaching 5 to 6km inland, occupy most of the southern part of the park. In the north, the rugged granite pinnacles of The Peaks and Mt Atherton dominate the landscape. The park boasts outstanding coastal scenery.
The park conserves large areas of coastal heath growing on low-nutrient dune sands. In sheltered areas, taller eucalypt woodlands flourish and where there is abundant water, rainforest thrives. The area also supports many migratory and resident birds.
Three areas are available for camping in the national and conservation park. Camping permits are required and fees apply. Before setting up camp you will need to obtain a camping permit, then attach it to your tent in a visible place. Please camp with minimum impact and take all the rubbish with you when you leave
Five Rocks visitor area
This is the park's only campground with facilities and offers self-registration camping only. There are picnic tables, toilets, cold showers and water, which must be treated before drinking.
You cannot book campsites at Five Rocks in advance. Obtain your permit at the self-registration station before setting up camp.
Beach camping is permitted at Nine Mile Beach in the 4.5km camping zone south of Freshwater Creek. Camp sites are designated by blue markers. The nearest facilities are at Five Rocks visitor area. Camping is not permitted at Sandy Point Section, along Three Rivers Beach or at Corio Bay.
You can book on-line or contact QPWS Rockhampton to obtain your permit. Alternatively, you can use the on-park self-registration stations located at Five Rocks visitor area or 200m before the Nine Mile Beach access point. Remember to obtain your permit before setting up camp.
Waterpark Point campground
Bush camping at the Scout's Camp — Waterpark Point campground is only accessible by boat. The little cove is protcted from most of the prevailing winds. It has only one campsite and caters for up to 20 people. You must book in advance. There are no facilities.
Things to do
Improve your fitness while you enjoy the sights but ensure you match the walk to your fitness and mobility. Experienced bushwalkers can tackle longer walks and unmarked trails.
Queen Mary Sandblow — undefined track. Grade: Difficult
The sandblow is part of a large, dynamic dune system on the southern end of Nine Mile Beach. To access the beach you can take either Nine Mile track or the southern track from Five Rocks visitor area. (The beach access points are numbered 19 and 21 on the map). The sandblow is about 10km south from access point 19, and 8.1km south from access point 21. From the beach you will need to scramble over a sand cliff for about five metres. A sign on this dune's peak marks the start of a distinct walking track, which begins with a 500m walk through beach scrub and dune vegetation. Once on the sandblow it is quite exposed and the track is not defined. There are panoramic views from the peak but only those who are fit should attempt this walk, as it is difficult. Take plenty of water and wear sun protective clothing.
Five Rocks track — 500m to beach (Allow 2 hours to explore) Grade: Easy
A short stepped walking track from the Five Rocks visitor area follows Findlay's Creek down to a vehicle-free beach between Stockyard Point and Five Rocks headland. Allow time to walk along the beach and explore the headland. This walk is best at low tide as access to Three Rivers Beach is cut at high tide.
All tracks through Byfield National Park are suitable for four-wheel-driving. Sand driving experience is required. Beach driving requires a Livingstone Shire Council beach permit.
In the Sandy Point Section, four-wheel-drive vehicles with a beach permit are permitted along Farnborough beach between Bangalee and Sandy Point.
Special care needs to be taken to keep to the boarded track across Sandy Point Spit as endangered little terns nest here, mainly between September and January.
Picnic and day use area
Enjoy a picnic at Five Rocks visitor area. Picnic tables, toilets and cold showers are provided and a walking track gives access to a vehicle-free beach.
Boating and fishing
Recreational fishing and boating is a popular activity for visitors to Byfield National Park. Small boats can be launched from the Sandy Point Section; however, there is no formal boat ramp available. A boat ramp at Corbetts Landing launches into Waterpark Creek. It is managed by Livingstone Shire Council and is accessible from Byfield State Forest.
All waters around Byfield and Corio Bay are protected as marine park. A yellow conservation park zone, which permits certain activities and limits line fishing, extends along much of Farnborough and Nine Mile Beach.
Corio Bay and the waters east of the conservation park zone have various general use zones with line and hook conditions under the Fisheries Act.
For more detailed zoning maps and information for State waters see Great Barrier Reef Coast Marine Park and for Commonwealth waters see Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority. Information is also available from QPWS Rockhampton or QPWS Rosslyn Bay.
Rare, endangered and endemic (found nowhere else) plants, such as the Byfield fern Bowenia serrulata and the Byfield grevillea Grevillea venusta, thrive in Byfield.
The area supports many migratory and resident birds. Endangered little terns Sterna albifrons nest on the shifting sandy spit of Sandy Point and vulnerable beach stone-curlews Esacus neglectus have been sighted along the coast. Corio Bay and Waterpark Creek are significant breeding grounds for prawns and fish. With internationally significant wetlands and feeding and roosting sites for migratory shore birds, Sandy Point will delight birdwatchers. Please take care, however, as these areas are extremely sensitive to disturbances.
Things to know before you go
Essentials to bring
Byfield National Park is remote and you need to be self-sufficient. There are no public facilities at the small coastal township of Stockyard Point adjacent to Byfield Conservation Park. The nearest shop and fuel are in Byfield township.
Climate and weather
The Byfield area has a unique subtropical climate and receives more rain than surrounding areas. It can be hot, humid and wet at times.
61 Yeppoon Rd, Parkhurst
PO Box 3130, North Rockhampton QLD 4701
ph (07) 4936 0511
fax (07) 4936 2212
QPWS Rosslyn Bay (Marine parks)
John Howes Drive, Rosslyn Bay
PO Box 770, Yeppoon QLD 4703
ph (07) 4933 6595
fax (07) 4933 6619
EPA Customer Service Centre
160 Ann Street, Brisbane
PO Box 15155, City East QLD 4002
ph (07) 3227 8185
fax (07) 3227 8749
Information for this National Park has been supplied courtesy of Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service