17 October 2018
Alliance to Save Hinchinbrook Inc.
Now it’s the government to whom we say HANDS OFF HINCHINBROOK! - to protect Hinchinbrook Island from government proposals for accommodation infrastructure and guided tours along a self-reliant wilderness walk, in a national park that is the jewel in the crown of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (GBRWHA). See:
“Delivery and operation of eco-accommodation and tour guidance for Thorsborne Trail” - tender invitation 12 October 2018 (Queensland Department Innovation Tourism Industry Development and the Commonwealth Games).
Ms Moorhouse said: “The state government decision to introduce accommodation and guided tours on Hinchinbrook Island’s Thorsborne Trail undermines not only the exceptional world heritage evaluation of this wilderness island – but also the government’s credibility as a holder and manager of protected lands.”
“It is astounding that neither Tourism nor Environment portfolios seem to understand that Hinchinbrook Island was gazetted and dedicated as national park precisely to preserve its special natural values. The purpose of all national parks is conservation.”
“And they have ignored the recently reviewed Hinchinbrook Island National Park Management Plan.”
The Thorsborne Trail is internationally renowned as a rare recreational experience; a 4-5 day remote area wilderness walk, available to those who can carry all they need for a nature immersion experience.
Small walking parties – singles, couples, families – can appreciate this special experience, out of sight and sound of other walkers.
The success of a wilderness trail is measured not by “how many” visitors but by whether or not natural processes remain undisturbed.
On 26 April 2018 the DES Minister’s Office advised ASH that we would be notified of matters affecting Hinchinbrook Island. ASH received no such notification.
Thorsborne Trail, Hinchinbrook Island National Park
The Thorsborne Trail is an existing rudimentary 32 kilometres class 5 trail along the eastern coast of Hinchinbrook Island off Cardwell, Queensland. The island is home to the world’s largest number of man-grove species and has significant environmental and natural attraction.
The public has access to the track and associated facilities, albeit with a limit of 40 people at a time. There is a well-recognised potential for an upgrade of the track and boardwalks as well as construction of accommodation pods to enable 3/4-day walks.
For more information on the existing trail, visit Department of Environment and Science website
Located on the largest island national park in Australia, the Thorsborne Trail features public campsites, toilets, picnic tables and water collection points. The Trail is 32km long, not graded or hardened and, as a Grade 5 trail in its most difficult sections, is considered challenging to hike. Most visitors hiking the entire Trail take between three and seven days to do so.
(FROM The Department of Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games has transitioned to the Department of Innovation, Tourism Industry Development and the Commonwealth Games. We are continuing to update this website working with other Queensland Government departments.)
SEE ALSO HINCHINBROOK ISLAND NATIONAL PARK MANAGEMENT PLAN,
The government's MEDIA RELEASE: and
The government's invitation for EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST HERE and HERE