Moonlight Crag, Balancing Rock and Castle Crag

Lamington National Park

Visit a few fantastic lookouts which capture the amazing Lost World Plateau, Moran's Falls and the border ranges including Mt Throakban. Can be combined with Moran's Falls, Lyrebird Lookout or the Wishing Tree walks.

Getting there

Head up to O'Reilly's (see http://www.aussiebushwalking.com/qld/lamington for details). Find the "Red Road" on the right just before the campground. The walk starts by heading down this road towards the O'Reilly Villas (not the guest house). Parking is available at the main O'Reilly car park just after the campground.

Route/Trail notes

Walk down the road past the O'Reilly Slaughterhouse and around the U-Bend at the Red Cedar. You should find a sign pointing you to follow the road to the right across Morans Creek. Keep on the road, tending left at the next fork (right fork leads to Morans Falls).

The road rises reasonably steeply to another fork. The right leads directly to Balancing Rock and Castle Crag, but keep left towards Moonlight Crag.

At another turn in the road you should see an old sign in the forest pointing left to Moonlight Crag and right to Balancing Rock. Stick witth the road, but take notice of this point for the return journey.

Finally you'll reach a clearing and shortly after the start of a short boardwalk to Moonlight Crag. The actual lookout is fully built up and sometimes used for weddings and dinners. From the lookout you'll feel like you can reach out and touch the Lost World just across the Albert Valley below you. To your left you can see the McPherson Range including Mt Worendo and Mt Throakban.

Once you've finished at the crag head back along the road to the signpost mentioned previously. At this point don't follow the road's turn to the right, but rather head straight ahead into the forest along a track. This track pops over a hill and down to meet the road again near Balancing Rock. When you hit the road follow it to the left to Balancing Rock. The rock is currently cordoned off due to instability.

Traverse right around the rock and along the precarious ridge to the end of Castle Crag. From here you'll get more views of the Lost World and Albert River Valley as well as great look back at Morans Falls. If you're at all concerned about sharp drops then probably best to stop at Balancing Rock.

Finally head back along the road to your car.

Alternative Tracks

Morans Falls

You can visit Morans Falls by turning off the Red Road 100m before reaching the Slaughterhouse. After vising the falls keep heading onto the road and do a sharp U-Turn at the signposted fork. Alternatively follow the main Morans Falls track which starts about 1km before the main O'Reilly's carpark. http://www.aussiebushwalking.com/qld/lamington/morans-falls

Lyrebird Lookout

The turnoff for the Lyrebird Lookout is at the clearing just before the Moonlight Crag boardwalk and is signposted. Probably best to do Balancing Rock/Castle Crag before Moonlight Crag if you're walking in that direction (alternatively you could do Lyrebird Lookout first and use this walk to get back.

Wishing Tree

The wishing tree track meets the Red Road at the Red Cedar near the Slaughterhouse. It can provide a nicer walk to or from than simply following the road.

Other References

http://www.oreillys.com.au/lamington-national-park/bushwalking/short-walks

http://trailwanderer.wordpress.com/2012/10/14/moran-falls-and-lyrebird-lookout-circuits-lamington-national-park/

Comments

A great walk with plenty to see. A good one to do if you're after some good views. Heaps of wildlife to see as well.

rob.bushman on 31 Jul, 2016

The track from Balancing Rock to Castle Crag is pretty overgrown and good habitat for snakes. I took my time and eventually got to to the end. Spectacular views on a beautiful clear, autumn day.
Not recommended for anyone who doesn't like heights or bush bashing.

BonnieBee on 6 Apr, 2015

Wishing Tree track part way to Moran Falls

Pagie on 14 Jul, 2014

Started on the Red Road and continued to Balancing Rock, stopped in the saddle between Balancing Rock and Castle Crag as a thunderstorm started the roll in and the gusts of wind were quite dangerous. Definitely recommend checking conditions before attempting this walk. Balancing Rock is currently cordoned off, when you view it, it looks like it's about to fall off at any moment. On our way back from Balancing Rock we saw a very weathered sign pointing to Castle Crag which we followed along the ridge. The trail is not always clear but there is the occasional orange tape to spot. Incredible views of the lost world. By far the best view I've seen in a long time. Well worth it!

Alice on 27 Apr, 2014

Took the Wishing Tree track to start with. Very cloudy when we arrived at Moonlight Crag, but cleared up just in time for fantastic views.

Richard Mason on 13 Jan, 2013

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