Thorsborne Trail Enhancement Project details released

23 November 2023

KAP Deputy Leader and Hinchinbrook MP, Nick Dametto, and his wife Alicia Dametto hiking the Thorsborne Trail.

Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) Deputy Leader and State Member for Hinchinbrook, Nick Dametto, is excited to share the Thorsborne Trail Enhancement Project details.

In the 2023-24 State Budget, Hinchinbrook Island’s Thorsborne Trail scored $1.5 million to upgrade and build new nature-based experiences and facilities. Yesterday, the Department of Environment and Science released the Thorsborne Trail Enhancement Project overview.

As stated on the Department’s website, the key project features include:

  • Re-design of major visitor sites/campgrounds: Ramsay Bay, Nina Bay, Little Ramsay Bay, Zoe Bay, Mulligan Falls, and George Point.
  • Design of campsites will allow for seclusion/separation from other users, with appropriate infrastructure depending on the site and user group.
  • In keeping with the desired remote and wild experience, site upgrades are generally low-key, focusing on better site design and flow.
  • Replacing existing and providing new toilets – in total 6 new toilets will be built, mostly with 2 pedestals to reduce waiting times. No other buildings are planned for the island.
  • Simple furniture (log seats, platforms, pack racks) will also be provided at the main campsites.
  • A new longer pontoon at Ramsay Bay will replace the existing pontoon to better facilitate vessel transfer needs for the trail.
  • Trail entry/exit and hiker preparation areas at Ramsay Bay (including new toilet) and George Point to better accommodate hikers – including park and cultural messaging.
  • Minor trail works may be undertaken at key areas to address impacts to natural/cultural values and visitor safety issues, rather than increasing walking comfort or accessibility. This may include short alternate tracks around tidal creeks/swamps, erosion issues, minor diversions.
  • Updated and new communications products about the trail for walkers and industry will be created including pre-hike planning, key cultural, park, trail, and safety information and messaging.
  • While some new signage will be installed on the ground, much of this is planned to be done through other mediums in keeping with the trail’s remote and wild experience.
  • A seasonal closure of the trail during January and February due to the high risk of unsafe conditions over this period. [1]

The Hinchinbrook MP said that it’s great to see the State Government investing into tourism in North Queensland and in particular Hinchinbrook.

“We are lucky enough to have one of Australia’s largest island National Parks, Hinchinbrook Island, right at our doorstep and we are excited that the State Government is investing $1.5 million into the island however, we do need to iron out some of the issues that our local tourism operators are facing,” he said.

“Recently, we have called for a review of the Hinchinbrook Island National Park Management Plan 2017 to improve logistics to ensure that permits are hitting the maximum of 40 permits per day to support our local economy.

“I am of the understanding that management plans are reviewed every 5 to 10 years and as the Thorsborne Trail Enhancement Project is ticking along it would be timely for the Department to review the Hinchinbrook Island National Park Management Plan 2017 and address the issues with the current booking system.

“The Thorsborne Trail Enhancement Project will enhance the hiker’s experience by improving major visitor sites and campgrounds, while still providing a remote and wild experience that hikers travel to Hinchinbrook Island for.

“Although I welcome these minor upgrades, I still believe that we are completely missing the mark on what Hinchinbrook Island could be for Queensland ecotourism. The track and the island’s natural assets really only accommodate the experienced or able-bodied hiker.

“In this day and age, we should be opening this natural asset up to everyone who wants to experience this beautiful island National Park, this means disability access and accommodation that caters to everyone.

“The Thorsborne Trail is a top tourism attraction for the electorate, and we need to ensure that it continues to attract nature enthusiasts and adventurer seekers alike to encourage new business opportunities and support our current tourism operators, accommodation and hospital businesses.”

The Hinchinbrook MP looks forward to meeting with the Minister to discuss suggestions to review the Hinchinbrook Island National Park Management Plan 2017 and current booking system.



Nick Dametto MP