On Saphira’s recent road trip around Queensland, she learned about the mystically named Gemini Mountains between Mackay and Emerald. These twin peaks form part of Peak Range National Park and are a worthwhile addition to your road trip itinerary!


We acknowledge that this adventure is located on the traditional Country of the Wangan and Jagalingou peoples who have occupied and cared for the lands, waters, and their inhabitants for thousands of years. We pay our respects to them as the Traditional Custodians and recognise that sovereignty was never ceded

Quick Overview

The Gemini Mountains are ruggedly beautiful twin peaks 200km south-west of Mackay in the Isaac Region of Central Queensland. They’re located in the Gemini Section of Peak Range National Park on the lands of the Wangan and Jagalingou people.

About the Gemini Mountains

The Gemini Mountains are an underrated highlight of Central Queensland, consisting of Mount Pollux (555 metres) and Mount Castor (545 metres). These charming twin peaks jut out of the surrounding open eucalypt woodland.



The colonial names for the peaks come from Greek and Roman mythology, after the twin half-brothers Pollux and Castor. Together, they were known as the Gemini (which is Latin for ‘twins’).

The Gemini Mountains make up one of four sections of the disjunct Peak Range National Park. If you summit, you’ll get stunning views of the surroundings, including Wolfang Peak, Lords Table Mountain, and Eastern Peak (which make up the rest of Peak Range National Park).

Whether you summit or not, the Gemini Mountains are the perfect rugged hike for your next Central Queensland adventure.

Read more: Road Tripping the Central Queensland Highlands

History of the Gemini Mountains

Geologists have determined that the Gemini Mountains were formed from volcanic activity of the Peak Range Volcano between 32 and 29 million years ago.

What you see today are volcanic plugs made of rhyolite (a type of rock formed from magma). The Gemini Mountains were first sighted by Europeans on 18 January 1845 as part of the Leichhardt Expedition.

Aboriginal Significance of the Gemini Mountains

The Gemini Mountains fall within the region claimed by the Wangan and Jagalingou people. Wangan and Jagalingou stories describe how the nearby Wolfang Peak was created from a rainbow serpent (Mundunjudra) falling from the sky.

Further information about the spiritual and cultural significance of the Gemini Mountains is not currently publicly available but, as always, we should tread lightly, reverently, and respectfully when adventuring, including in the Gemini Mountains.



Today, some members of the Wangan and Jagalingou people are leading a fierce campaign against destructive mining in the region which you can read more about on their website or their Instagram.

How to Get to the Gemini Mountains

You can get to the Gemini Mountains by car from Mackay by heading 200km south-west along State Route 70.

To get to the Gemini Mountains from Emerald, head north-west along the A7 to Clermont, then turn off a little after Clermont onto State Route 70.

The Gemini Mountains are right on State Route 70 – just pull in at the Peak Range National Park sign and park in the designated area.

Read more: Remember to leave no trace


Where to Stay Near the Gemini Mountains

There are free places to camp near the Gemini Mountains at the rest stops at Clermont BP Roadhouse (13km south of Moranbah) or the Isaac River Rest Area.



You can also camp at the Clermont Caravan Park, but the best place to camp is Theresa Creek Dam. Here you can go fishing and do a variety of water sports, including canoeing.

There’s a range of hotels and motels near the Gemini Mountains at nearby Moranbah or Clermont. The best places to stay near the Gemini Mountains are:

  • Oaks Moranbah Suites
  • Moranbah Motor Inn
  • Black Nugget Hotel Motel
  • Western Heritage Motor Inn
  • Clermont Country Motor Inn
  • Grand Hotel Motel
  • Smart Stayzzz Inns
  • Peppercorn Motel
  • Leo Hotel Motel
  • Clermont Hotel Motel

Where to Eat Near the Gemini Mountains

A lot of the hotels and motels have dining options in-house or nearby, which offer the best places to eat near the Gemini Mountains.

However, make sure to also check out these places which form part of The Great Isaac Pub and Pie Crawl!

  • Moranbah Workers Club
  • Moranbah Bakery
  • Town Square Pies & Takeaway
  • Commercial Hotel Clermont
  • Bluemac Bakehouse Clermont

Best Things to do at the Gemini Mountains

  • Hike around the foothills on the vehicle access tracks
  • Enjoy the views from the top of the peaks
  • Explore the caves at Mount Pollux
  • Keep an eye out for the vulnerable Southern Squatter pigeon (it has striking black and white face markings)
  • Hold a cooee contest!
  • Have a picnic nearby at Lords Table Mountain, on Huntley Road (check road condition in advance)
  • Hike to the saddle of Lords Table Mountain
  • Visit nearby Wolfang Peak
  • Go gold fossicking in Clermont

Essential Gear for the Gemini Mountains

  • Footwear suitable for mud
  • PLB or phone with reception
  • Good hat and sun protection
  • Plenty of water
  • First aid kit (you’re in a remote area!)

Skill Level

Beginner – Advanced

The walk to the mountains along the vehicle access track is beginner, but it’s certainly an advanced climbing to the summit due to the loose rock and off-track nature.

Distance / Duration / Elevation Gain

Walk to the base of both mountains: 10km / 4 hours
To summit both mountains: 13.5km / 5 hours / 360 metres

What it’s Like to Hike the Gemini Mountains

You can walk around Peak Range National Park via the vehicle access tracks (no vehicle access to the public, pedestrian access only) to get different vantage points of the Gemini Mountains.

From the car park, it’s a 4km walk one-way to the foothills of Mount Pollux, and another 1km to the foothills of Mount Castor (so a sunrise hike is totally viable!). Round-trip, if you visit both peaks it’s about 10km return. If you choose to summit them, you’re looking at 13.5km and 360 metres combined elevation change.



On the climb to the summits there are no defined summit tracks and the rock is quite loose. So if you want to summit the peaks, seek further advice from Queensland Parks and Wildlife. There’s no specific webpage on the Peak Range National Park, so it’s best to give parks a call on (07) 4983 1211.

Personally, our experience hiking the Gemini Mountains was quite the adventure!  We car camped the night before at a nearby rest area, enjoying an absolute stunner of a sunset and views of the twin peaks.



The next morning we headed off early. It was a bit of a boring walk-in along the vehicle access track – dead straight for a couple of kilometres and super muddy (the kind of mud that seems to layer indefinitely onto your boots until you’re walking on mud-stilts).



Then we left the vehicle access track and started heading off-track towards Mount Pollux for our summit attempt.

We quickly realised our pace was going to be much slower than we’d expected due to the Golden Orb spiders. They had set-up house between every single set of trees (shame on us for trying to hike it in summer!).



Avoiding the sheer number of webs was impossible, so we were left to dance around, limbo, and duck under them the whole way to Mount Pollux.

Eventually, we reached the base of Mount Pollux and started making headway up the peak. But we found the rock quality was quite poor. There was a lot of loose rock and vegetation. It didn’t feel exposed or unsafe though, just unexpected.

Near the summit, we came across a curled-up snake warming itself in the sun, directly on our route. It was proving difficult to find a route to avoid her.



After a muddy morning, hours spent dodging spiders, loose rock, a crushingly slow pace, and now a snake, we decided to accept that the universe didn’t want us summiting that day.

So, we found a little spot for lunch, enjoyed the stunning vistas of the surrounding region, and then headed back to the car. Despite all the setbacks, it was a nice little adventure, and the views were worth the visit. We plan to return!


Gemini Mountains: Exploring Central Queensland’s Twin Peaks, Saphira Schroers, peak range national park, central Queensland

Tips For Hiking the Gemini Mountains

  • Beware of loose rocks on the peaks
  • The walk in can be very muddy
  • Cars can get bogged at the car park after wet weather
  • There are no tracks up the peaks themselves
  • Hiking in Peak Range National Park should be done in the winter, not just because of the extreme heat in summer, but because of the Golden Orb spiders (as we found out the hard way!)
  • There are no facilities in the park and hikers must be fully self-sufficient


Gemini Mountains: Exploring Central Queensland’s Twin Peaks, Saphira Schroers, peak range national park, central Queensland, farm gate, dirt road, bushland

Gemini Mountains FAQs

Where are the Gemini Mountains located?

You’ll find the Gemini Mountains in the Isaac Region of Central Queensland in there own section of Peak Range National Park between Emerald and Mackay.

How do you get to the Gemini Mountains?

From Brisbane, the Gemini Mountains are am 11 hour drive. From Mackay, they’re a 2 hour and 40 minute drive away.

Do I need to book my visit to the Gemini Mountains?

Nope! You can just show up.

When is the best time of year to visit the Gemini Mountains?

It’s best to avoid hiking the Gemini Mountains in summer due to the extreme heat and high number of spiders around. Winter and autumn are the best months to explore.

How many days should I spend at the Gemini Mountains?

You can visit in the Gemini Mountains in a single day.

Are the Gemini Mountains good for beginners?

The walk to the base of the mountains is good for beginners, however to climb to the summit will require an advanced level of bushwalking skills.

Can you swim at the Gemini Mountains?

Nope! Nowhere to swim around here

Do you need a 4WD to get to the Gemini Mountains?

Nope! You can drive right up to the car park in a 2WD and then you’ll need to venture on foot from there.

Are the Gemini Mountains open?

At the time of writing, the Gemini Mountains are open

Are the Gemini Mountains free?

Yes, the Gemini Mountains are free to visit