About JC Slaughter Falls
JC Slaughter Falls is what I consider to be a waterfall that I associate with the city of Brisbane mainly because it’s within its urban sprawl on Mt Coot-tha.
That said, this is a highly seasonal waterfall (perhaps even ephemeral) that maybe only lasts for a few days after the passing of the lastest storm.
We actually witnessed how quickly the flow diminishes ourselves when the East Coast of Australia was getting battered by nearly a week of heavy La Nina rains (producing flooding across the border in New South Wales).
However, barely a day-and-a-half after the end of the storms, the waterfall clung onto what was left of its flow as you can see in the photo above.
Therefore, I contend that you really have to experience JC Slaughter Falls pretty much right in the midst of a rain storm to really see it flow well.
Speaking of experiencing the waterfall, we started from its nearest car park (see directions below), which was amidst of the JC Slaughter Picnic Area at the end of a narrow road.
From there, we walked along the Summit Track, which was a very well-developed (i.e. wide and partially paved) park walk that followed along East Ithaca Creek and made a couple of easy bridged crossings of it.
At about 300m from the start, we went across one unbridged traverse of East Ithaca Creek that involved some easy rock hopping, and shortly after that, we reached a signed trail junction.
At this junction, we kept to the right to leave the Summit Track for the Hoop Pine Track, which gently climbed alongside East Ithaca Creek for another 200m before reaching an unsigned spur on the right.
It was at this spur that we stood on an outcrop with an angled look at JC Slaughter Falls barely flowing while backed by a lookout further upstream of it.
This was the best spot to actually see the front of the waterfall though we did get up to the lookout, which was really only there to better examine the flow of East Ithaca Creek if it did have decent flow.
After having our fill of this waterfall, we went back the way we came, and we only took about 30-40 minutes away from the car.
There was an option to extend this walk towards Simpson Falls as well as the Summit Lookout, but each of those have their own car parks.
That said, the Mt Coot-tha Reserve is for all intents and purposes a city park, and thus it wasn’t surprising to see joggers, picnickers, or just people going for strolls.
JC Slaughter Falls resides in the Mt Coot-tha Reserve in Brisbane, Queensland. It is administered by the Brisbane City Council. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website.
Since JC Slaughter Falls resides within the Mt Coot-tha Reserve, which itself is within the sprawling city limits of Brisbane, there are many ways of driving to its nearest starting point.
So I’ll just say that the key to getting here from the Brisbane CBD would be to drive west on Milton Road (State Route 32) towards the Mt Coot-tha Road (briefly becoming the Route 5).
The roundabout where you get onto the Mt Coot-tha Road was near the end of the M3 Motorway.
We then followed the Mt Coot-Tha Road (which became the Sir Samuel Griffith Drive) for about 1.4km to the signed JC Slaughter Falls Picnic Area, where there was a turnoff to the left.
We then followed this turnoff and took this narrow road roughly 700m to the car park at its end.
Note that there were plenty of parking spaces along this drive so if it’s too busy, there’s always fallback options at the expense of walking a little longer to get to the JC Slaughter Falls.
Just to give you some geographical context, Brisbane was 78km (about an hour drive) north of the Gold Coast, 166km (2 hours drive) north of Byron Bay, and 617km (7 hours drive) south of Rockhampton, 911km (about 10 hours drive) north of Sydney, and 1,698km (about 20 hours drive) south of Cairns.
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