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Bushwalking is a popular pastime in the national parks and nature reserves of the Gold Coast Hinterland, where an extensive network of well-maintained scenic trails caters to recreational walkers, serious hikers, campers, and wildlife lovers. The region's many protected wilderness tracts, including World Heritage-listed Gondwana Rainforests of Australia (within Springbook National Park), contain hundreds of well-marked trails that vary from easy half-hour strolls to steep half-day hikes and multi-day treks. Most Hinterland walks offer spectacular views and sights.
Conditions can be challenging and changeable, however: before setting out on longer hikes, get suitably equipped. Download local trail maps and detailed park info from DERM's Web site or regional visitor information offices and follow DERMguidelines.
When walking, wear sturdy shoes, sunscreen, and protective gear, carry maps and a compass, and pack drinking water, emergency food supplies, and a well-charged mobile phone. If possible, walk in a group, especially on long hikes. Check local weather conditions with the Bureau of Meterology and trail conditions on DERM's Web site before you go.
If exploring the national parks by car, check road conditions with the RACQ's Web site and be sure you have local maps, good tires, sound brakes, water, and a full tank of gas before setting out.
Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) (13-7468 camping permits and information. www.derm.qld.gov.au.)
RACQ (13-1905 information. www.racq.com.au.)
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