This off-track route to Boyds Butte begins on the path to Cougal Cascades before turning off into the rainforest, but still offers the same stunning views of Mt Cougal at the summit.
- Beautiful views across to Mt Cougal
- Test your off-track skills – as long as you’re an experienced hiker with navigation expertise!
- Wild swimming!
Straddling the QLD-NSW border, Mt Cougal is a favourite among local hikers owing to its epic views. But did you know there’s another gorgeous peak nearby?
Boyds Butte sits at the summit of the Cougal Cascades and offers stunning views across the valley to Mt Cougal itself. There’s a guided track to the summit, but why not take the off-track route instead?
Follow The Cougal Cascades
Short on time one spring day, our trio of hikers settled on heading up an off-track route adjacent to the twin peaks of Mt Cougal.
Boyds Butte is a lesser known peak in the Gold Coast Hinterland and sits above the Cougal Cascades.
While for the fast and fit, it takes little more than an hour to reach the top, the ascent packs a punch. It’s a steep footpad up to Boyds Butte, with some rock scrambling needed as you get to the upper reaches.
The hike starts from the formed Cougal Cascades trail in Springbrook National Park.
Walk to the remains of the old timber mill and locate the footpad that heads along the creek. After a short time, there’s a footpad leading from the creek to the right – it can be hard to spot the entrance so keep your eyes peeled.
Clambering Ascent to Boyds Butte
As you head up hill the route begins as a wide defined footpad like a fire trail marked by pink tape. Soon the trail starts to narrow and become steep. Watch out for wait-a-while vines littering this route.
After about 45 minutes, there’s a bit of rock scrambling as the slope becomes steeper and more slippery and the footpad less defined, so keep an eye out for the tape.
Soon you’ll reach a cliff line, skirt along this for a few minutes, then it’s a short but loose rock scramble up to the lookout, so take care!
From here, you get a great view of Mt Cougal’s East and West Peak.
We were short on time, so didn’t make it to Mt Cougal but you have the option to continue along a rough footpad to get there.
We returned via the same route, which was quicker on the descent. If you want to cool off after your hike, you can stop by Cougal Cascades or head to Currumbin Rock Pools, located a short drive away along Currumbin Creek Road.
- 1-2 litres of water
- Insect repellent (for ticks and flies)
- Hat and sunscreen
- Hiking shoes
- Long sleeves and long pants are recommended
How To Get There
The hike to Boyds Butte starts from the Cougal Cascades car park at the end of Currumbin Creek Road. It’s about a 90 minute drive from Brisbane.
It’s a short hike but it’s steep in places and all off-track so navigation experience is required.
Given the terrain, it’s a good idea to avoid this one in the wet or after recent heavy rain as it’ll be very slippery especially on the final scramble.
Duration / Elevation
The hike takes about 3-4 hours return. Boyds Butte is 581 metres.
If you’re planning to hike to Mt Cougal from the Cascades, add another hour or two. Mt Cougal’s East Peak is 715 metres.