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Mount Moffatt: Camping Review

Carnarvon Gorge is a spectacular national park in Queensland’s Sandstone Belt and really shouldn’t be missed. But it’s also quite popular (justifiably so) so if you want to venture somewhat off the beaten track, make the trek out to the Mount Moffatt section of Carnarvon National Park.

You won’t find too many people here.

READ MORE: Exploring Mount Moffatt

Sunset over the escarpment

Mount Moffatt: Camping Areas

Camping here is a bit like camping at Expedition National Park: It’s back-to-basics, self-sufficient camping, and you’re lucky if you ever meet a ranger. And just like Expedition National Park, you’ll need a high-clearance 4WD vehicle to access the park and camping areas.

You’ve got the choice of four campgrounds here. Dargonelly Rock Hole and West Branch camping areas both offer camping for 30 people each, while Rotary Shelter Shed and Top Moffatt are fairly small with 3-4 sites each.

In 2014 when we did our trip, and when you didn’t have to pre-book your camping permits yet, we simply rocked up at Mount Moffatt and decided that Rotary Shelter Shed looked fantastic: Sprawling views over Carnarvon National Park and only one other couple camping in a camper trailer.

Standing in our campsite with an hour of daylight to spare until sundown

The Rotary Shelter Shed campsite is on the High Country Drive track.

This dirt road also goes out to the Head of Carnarvon Creek and often gets closed due to weather. It can get very wet and muddy, and the rangers might thus lock the gate. In fact, we got rained out and by the next morning, the road had turned into an ankle-deep mud track.

Like with any bush camping, make sure you’ve got enough supplies including water. There is water, both at Rotary Shelter Shed and West Branch (and also close to Dargonelly Rock Hole) but don’t rely on it. It’s tank water so you’ll probably want to boil it before drinking in any case and use it sparingly.

Tent with a view

Being at elevation (about 1,000m), camping here in winter can be a cold affair (around 0°C) so make sure you’ve got some warm woollies to keep you toasty on the rather fresh nights and mornings.

There aren’t really any clearly defined sites at Rotary Shelter Shed (and I expect at the other camping areas) but there’s a water tap and a table under a shelter. Out here, it’s all about self-sufficient bush camping without any real facilities but at least you have a pit toilet and won’t need to dig a hole to bury your waste.

Foggy views and freezing cold the next morning after a night of incessant rain

Mount Moffatt camping areas at a glance

PROS: Beautiful views (and sunsets) over the Carnarvon escarpment; vehicle-based camping; remote bush camp setting

CONS: Having to pre-book your site now; can be very cold in winter

Not sure what the tents and mozzies mean? Check out my tents and mozzies guide.


Find more details on the four campsites at Mount Moffatt, including a map of this section, how to get there, how to book a site and what to bring, on the Queensland National Parks website.

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Camping options at Mount Moffatt, Carnarvon National Park

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