Northbrook Parkway

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Northbrook Parkway
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Start location: Dundas
Length: 5.85.8 km
5,800 metres
3.604 miles
km (3.6 mi)
Average gradient: 99 %%
Elevation gain: 539539 m
1,768.373 ft
m (1768 ft)
Maximum elevation: 732732 m
2,401.575 ft
m (2401 ft)
Category: 2
Road surface: Sealed
Strava segment: Link

The Northbrook Parkway (also known as the back of Mount Glorious) is one of the steepest sustained climbs on a sealed road in Southeast Queensland. It passes from the low elevations of the Wivenhoe Dam catchment to the rainforest heights of the D'Aguilar National Park. In summer, the top can be as much as 10 degrees cooler than the bottom.

Climb location[edit]

The Northbrook Parkway is on the route taken to reach Mount Glorious via the Brisbane Valley Highway and the Wivenhoe-Somerset Rd.

Start of the climb[edit]

Start of the Northbrook Parkway climb.

The climb starts after you cross the Northbrook Creek for the last time heading east toward Mount Glorious

End of the climb[edit]

The climb ends after you pass the parking lot for the Wivenhoe Lookout, and really the hard part of the climb finishes when you pass that turnoff

At a glance[edit]

  • first 500 metres of around 8% lull you into a false sense of security
  • The next two kilometres of mid to high teens gradients are extremely challenging
  • A good spot for your 3 Peaks preparation
  • Beautiful scenery as you climb into the D'Aguilar rainforest
  • Great views behind you, but you won't notice
  • Watch out for motorbikes - there are a lot of them!

Description of the climb[edit]

End of the tough part of the Northbrook Parkway climb, looking back down the hill.

The approach to the climb starts from the Dundas turnoff leaving the Wivenhoe-Somerset road. The road gently climbs for about 12km through very pleasant countryside along the edge of the Northbrook Creek, crossing it multiple times. After you cross the Northbrook Creek for the last time the climb begins with a 500m section of steep but manageable gradient around 8%, until you get past the first hairpin. It then starts to steepen up as you go around the second hairpin bend, and then heads straight up the ridge at gradients of up to 20% for the next two km or so. After that the climb settles down to around a 10% gradient until you get to the parking area for the Wivenhoe Lookout at about 3.3 km, and after that it settles down to a more manageable 8% or so until it finishes at about 5.7km in a location not really marked by anything except a sense of relief (see Google Street View above).


Profile of the Northbrook Parkway climb.
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History of the climb[edit]

The climb is widely known though generally avoided. It does tend to get some attention from riders in training for the Scody 3 Peaks, as it is steeper than, but nowhere near as long as, the dreaded WTF Hill at the start of the back of Falls Ck climb (have a look at the profile comparisons in the Image Gallery)

Adjoining climbs/nearby climbs[edit]

This climb is off the back end of the much-travelled Nebo-Glorious route which is profiled in the book "Where to Ride Southeast Queensland". A popular route for a good days riding is to go from The Gap over the top of Mt Glorious descend all the way to Somerset-Winvenhoe Rd and follow into Fernvale before refueling at the bakery and returning via Ipswich. Try and complete that in 4 hours, I double dare you. Nearby climbs include The Gap - Mt Nebo/Glorious along Waterworks Rd, Highvale to Mt Nebo along the Goat track (which has 2.7km of dirt and is one way going up), and the opposite direction up Mt Glorious from Highvale along PEI Rd.

Alternate start or finish points[edit]

The climb can also be accessed by riding on from Mount Glorious on the normal Nebo-Glorious route.

The descent[edit]

If you are coming back down the climb, it is worth remembering that the bottom part is very steep and you will be riding your brakes to keep in control. There is not a huge amount of traffic, but don't be tempted to use the whole road as this is a favourite route for motorcyclists, and it is an area where they like to go fast


Watch out for motorcycles on this climb.


Facts about "Northbrook Parkway"RDF feed
Average gradient9 % +
Cat2 +
Elevation gain539 m (1,768.373 ft) +
Length5.8 km (5,800 metres, 3.604 miles) +
Maximum elevation732 m (2,401.575 ft) +
Start coordinates-27° 18' 16.4124", 152° 42' 35.1648"Latitude: -27.304559
Longitude: 152.709768
Start locationDundas +
SurfaceSealed +