Mt May is located in Barney National Park. The track can be accessed from Waterfall Creek Reserve Camp Ground on Waterfall Creek Road. You can drive to the campground in any vehicle, however after the camp ground the road is strictly 4WD only. This isn’t an over-exaggeration either – it is rough. If you have a 4WD, feel free to drive to the end of the 4WD track (which is what we did), otherwise you can walk the rest of the way (4km) or there is another trail leaving from the campground.
From the end of the 4WD track, the path is blatantly obvious. You will begin your ascent through forested areas and the path is very obvious all the way to the south peak. This section of the trail is all uphill and relatively strenuous. There is about 10m of rock climbing also. From the summit of the south peak, you will be rewarded with views of Mt Barney, Maroon Dam and the Northern Peak of Mt May.
To get off the south peak, you follow the trail off the eastern side of the peak. This trail is obvious for about 25m and then things get tricky. This next section requires some navigational skills and attention to detail. Our advice, keep your eyes peeled for anything that looks ‘path like.’ You will descend off a rocky section and then will walk north-east through some bushland. The ‘path’ is not obvious so you will need some sense of direction. You will continue walking north down into a valley where you will find a creek – cross the creek and head up. From here, the northern peak is directly west of you. There is a path, and once you find it, it is smooth sailing to the Northern Peak. This section is all uphill again and the approach to the summit is all rocky. From here, you will have better views of Maroon Dam and Barney NP & Main Range.
This is where things get interesting. There is a path leading off the opposite side of the Northern Peak. We followed this path and stumbled across a 10-15m cliff edge. We climbed down without any issues however you will need some rock climbing ability and definitely some confidence. After this cliff, the trail becomes well defined once again before disappearing completely. From here, it is ‘choose your own adventure.’ You can definitely see where people have gone before you – we followed their ‘track.’ After a lot of zigzagging and scrambling, you will come across the initial trail you were on to the Southern Peak (SURPRISE). You will then follow this trail back to the end of the 4WD track.
Obviously there are a lot of ways to conquer these peaks – we’re not 100% certain we took the ‘correct’ path but it was FUN and full of ADVENTURES!
Trail Distance & Time: 6km. 4hrs.
Drive Time from Brisbane: 1hr30mins.
Difficulty Level: Hard. Need navigational experience.