Two first-half goals moved Inverness CT to within two points of Queen of the South in the Championship table with three games in hand.
There was little between the teams early on but Nathan Austin's ninth-minute strike had the visitors ahead.
Darren Brownlie's header almost had Queens level but Carl Tremarco cleared off the line.
George Oakley steered the ball across Jack Leighfield to put Caley Thistle 2-0 up as the visitors won with ease.
Queens, devoid of confidence for the rest of the first half, did regroup after the interval but never really threatened a comeback.
Derek Lyle did hit the woodwork late on but their play-off hopes now hang by a thread while Caley extended their unbeaten run to six matches.
Carmichael on the charge
Lyle goes close
Queen of Sth
- 5BrownlieBooked at 14mins
- 21CarmichaelBooked at 29minsThomas
- 4ChalmersDoran Cogan
- 11VigursBooked at 34mins
- 10Doran Cogan