Tag: Bushwalk

Bald Head Walk Trail & Torndirrup National Park

Have you ever been to a location so beautiful that it makes you feel glad to be alive? It may sound a little odd, but that’s exactly how I felt while exploring the Bald Head Walk Trail.

Need to know info

Distance: 12km there and back ( we however did about 5km)
Trail Start: Isthmus Hill car park,  Murray Street, Albany, Torndirrup National Park
Time: 2 – 3 hours one way
Difficulty: Difficult
Stuff you’ll need: Sunscreen, water, hat, sturdy walking boots

The Bald Head Walk Trail

Our Bald Head Walk Trail experience did not go to plan. When we set off from Denmark, the sun was shining, albeit a little weakly but the skies were definitely blue. As we made the 40 minute drive to Albany, grey clouds began rolling in, and by the time we entered Torndirrup National Park, these ominous clouds had covered the sky.

Bald Head Walk Trail boardwalk

The wooden boardwalk up Isthmus Hill.

When we reached the trailhead, light rain was falling and thick white mist obscured our view of the coastline. Should we turn back and check out some other, drier tourist spots in the area? Probably. But first we decided to make the short 1km climb up Isthmus Hill to see if our walk would be worthwhile.

After walking up a slippery and steep wooden boardwalk through peppermint trees and coastal heath, we emerged on the top of Isthmus Hill. In the distance, we could just make out the striped rocks of nearby Stony Hill and the coastline of Frenchman’s Bay. But by then, that oh-too-familiar walking itch had set in so we agreed to go ‘‘just a little bit further.”

Isthmus Hill

Me trying to be positive about our cloudy view from Isthmus Hill.

As we rounded the next corner, I think we all shared an involuntary outburst of exclamations and swear words. The view was incredible. The thick white mist had parted to reveal a brilliant green isthmus that stretched out between two blue but very turbulent bodies of water below. You can’t turn your back on scenery this beautiful so we continued on the trail.

Bald Head Walk Trail

The sort of view that’s sure to make any nature fan feel giddy!

With every step we took, more and more of the coastline came in to view. To our left was Frenchman’s Bay. To our right was the Southern Ocean, which was putting on quite the show with huge waves crashing against the rocks below. As the peninsula narrowed, we spotted a sign and narrow path leading down to these fierce waves.

Bald Head Walk trail

Walking down to meet the monster waves

Normally, I’m a little hesitant around angry water, but my braver walking buddies saw no problem, so we made the descent to the rocks below where we met some of the largest waves I have ever seen in my life. These turquoise blue monsters were thrashing the rocks, making the sort of roar that reminds that you don’t stand a chance against them. As nerve-racking as that can be, that humbling feeling is one of my favourite things about nature and about this trail.

 

Bald head walk trail waves

While this photo doesn’t capture the scale of the waves, it does capture their excellent colour.

After we had filled our wave watching quota, we climbed back up and continued along the main trail until we reached a peak which I think is called Limestone Head. Here, our old friends heavy rain and mist returned, once again blocking our view of the surrounds. I also admit, that we had made the regrettable decision of not bringing much water, as we hadn’t planned to go much further than Isthmus Hill. So rather than push on unprepared and through bad weather, we turned back before reaching the trail’s namesake Bald Head.

Common Bunny Orchid

Common Bunny Orchid

While it was disappointing to cut the walk short, we did manage to catch a few glimpses of late-blooming wildflowers on the way back, like the Common Bunny Orchid, as well as plenty of droplet covered spiderwebs. Seeing as the trail features large granite and limestone outcrops, I’d be willing to bet that it also plays host to plenty of pretty wildflowers during spring. In fact, I’ve vowed to return to the trail during the warmer months to see if I’m right!

Torndirrup National Park

To make up for our shortened walk, we stopped in at a number of Torndirrup’s other wonderful coastal sights, including The Gap, Natural Bridge and The Blowholes. All of these are impressive in their own right, particularly the Gap, who’s new walkway gives you a bird’s-eye view into a deep, wave filled chasm. Torndirrup National Park is definitely worth a visit, even if Bald Head’s 12km trail is out of your comfort range.

The Gap Albany

Feel the rage of the The Gap!

Torndirrup National Park

Colourful lichen adorns the boulders surrounding the Blowholes.

 

The verdict

While our Bald Head Walk was a little damper, greyer and shorter than the experience of others, (see the posts of Life of Py & The Long Way’s Better for sunnier pics) it was still a spectacular walk with scenery that I think is best described as life-affirming. Let me know if you feel the same way!

Torndirrup National Park

That curved dome is Bald Head, as viewed from The Blowholes.

 

The Jabitj Trail

Jabitj trail

‘Jabitj’ is the Noongar word for running water – and you’ll see plenty of it along this excellent riverside trail.

Need to know info

Distance: 12km return or 6km one way
Where: Wellington National Park, 25 minutes drive from Collie town centre
Time: 2 hours one way
Difficulty: Moderate
Stuff you’ll need: Hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, water, sturdy enclosed shoes, and bathers if it’s warm.

Where to find it

The Trail

Water, views and dense, green forest – they are some of the main things I look for in a bushwalk, and the Jabitj Trail is blessed with all three. Located in the Wellington National Park, The Jabitj Trail follows Collie River, taking you straight through the middle of an ancient river gorge.

Jabitj trail

The Collie River Valley in all its glory!

The trail begins behind the Wellington Dam Kiosk – look for the green boot print marker – and plunges straight down a steep incline until you reach a water pumping station. You could ignore the station and stick to the trail, but I recommend you take a quick detour to the left and check out the Wellington Dam Wall.

Wellington Dam on the Jabitj Trail

Gushing over the Wellington Dam.

Wellington Dam Wall.
While I’m normally all about the nature side of walks, I’ll admit that the Wellington Dam is impressive.The curve and size of the wall plays tricks on your eyes and the torrent that pours out from the dam wall is an excellent reminder of the unthinkable amount of water that is being held at bay. At this point of the walk, Jarrad raised the question of what would happen if the wall suddenly gave way…rather than dwell on that thought, let’s get back to the trail!

After the Dam, the trail takes you up a rocky outcrop and then curves around to give you an excellent view of the Collie River. Shaded by a canopy of trees and studded with mossy rocks, this part of the trail reminds me a little bit of Lane Poole Reserve in Dwellingup.

Jabitj trail 2

The first glimpse of Collie River on the trail.

Following this shady stretch, the trail moves into a drier, rockier and more exposed section a bush. Don’t worry, you only need to make one small hill climb before you’re once again greeted by the river’s edge and a fantastic view of the valley. From here on, it’s a constant stream of rapids, gentle pools and brilliant green water. Seriously, make space on your phone or camera, because you won’t be able to stop yourself snapping photos of this wonderful landscape.

Big Rock
Along the way keep an eye out for a gigantic, granite rock outcrop – creatively named ‘Big Rock’. Essentially a hillside of granite, it’s located on the other side of the Collie River and can be accessed via Lennard Road. The day after we tackled this trail, we drove to Big Rock and climbed almost to the top. It’s a very steep climb but it offers some incredible valley panorama, and a view down that will have your stomach turning somersaults.

Big Rock Jabitj Trail

It really is a big rock!

Honeymoon Pool
The final stop on the trail is Honeymoon Pool. This is a very popular camping spot, and deservedly so, because it’s beautiful. The pool itself is quiet stretch of river that is edged by peppermint trees and marris. There’s plenty of picnic tables and a handy boardwalk where you can sit and dip your feet in the glass-clear green water. If it wasn’t so cold on the day we visited, we’d have stripped off and gone for a swim!

Jabitj Trail

We named this spot Se-WREN-ity Pool because of the many blue wrens flittering on the water’s edge.

 

jabitj trail signage

The Jabitj Trail crosses paths with the Munda Biddi as well as the Kurliiny Tjenangitj Trail.

Tree on Jabitj trail

Burl on a gorgeous old Marri.

Being the endpoint of the trail, you can finish up at Honeymoon Pool and get a lift home, or you can follow the trail back to the start. Alternatively, you can follow our lead and use the Kurliiny Tjenangitj Trail and Sika Trail to get back to the Wellington Dam Kiosk. While it does add 2 or 3 extra kilometres and a very steep hill climb to your walk, taking this route home gives you some different, higher views of the valley. And thanks to DPaW’s excellent signage, it’s very easy to find your way back.
To wrap up, I cannot recommend the Jabitj Trail enough. It’s a wonderful walk with so many scenic spots to enjoy along the way.

Rapids, views, idyllic green pools – any nature fan is sure to be impressed. Definitely worth the trip!

 

 

The Cascades Walk

Last August, I visited the Gloucester National Park and was blown away by the beauty of Karri forest on the Gloucester Route Walk.  As wonderful as this trail was, I knew I had just scratched the surface of this magical place and vowed to return. Now in December, I’m back and ready to discover what else the forest holds – starting with a greener-than-green walk to The Cascades.

Need to know info

Distance: 6km one way. 12km return.
Where: Gloucester National Park, Pemberton
Time: 2.5 – 4 hours
Difficulty: Moderate
Cost: $12 national park entry fee
Stuff you’ll need: Hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, water, sturdy enclosed shoes and possibly wet weather gear.


Why do this

The Cascades Walk is chance to immerse yourself in the heart of some of Pemberton’s lushest karri forest. The Cascades are a set of rapids that tumble over the rocks of Lefroy Brook. Towards the end of summer, the cascades slow to gentle stream. From winter to spring, they’re a raging torrent that churns foam and creates an impressive roar. We visited on a particularly drizzly day in mid December, and luckily for us, they were still putting on quite the show.

The Trail

Trail entry point at Burma Road and Eastbrook crossroad.

Officially, the trail starts at the Gloucester Tree and follows the Gloucester Route for the first couple of kilometres. Having already climbed that majestic beast and explored it surrounds on bike and foot, we decided to save a bit of walking and start at the crossroads of Burma Road and the Eastbrook Trail.

The official start of the trail takes you down a series of switchbacks, passing giant karris and giving you valley views along the way. You’ll then hit a bitumen road that you will follow until you reach the crossroads. From here, you turn right and head back into the forest. No matter where you choose to start, the trail is well signed posted with wooden signs and the friendly and familiar yellow Wagyl. (Yep, that’s right, The Cascades Walk is actually a stretch of the Bibbulmum Track.)

The cascades pemberton

Now this is lush.

When you’ve got into the swing of the trail and stopped marvelling at the towering trees, you’ll notice the incredible range of greenery. There are karris covered in day-glo green moss, deep green tree ferns, vines with bronze-edged leaves and plenty of others I can’t name.

moss on the cascades walk

Did I mention the greenery? Moss, moss and more moss.

Compared to the usual subdued greys and greens of Perth’s bush, the Karri forest looks like someone has used every shade of green in the crayon box – in the best possible way.

From the crossroads, the trail is flat and easy, and it continues this way for three or so kilometres.  After a little while, it might seem a little repetitive but that just means you have the opportunity to zone out and soak up the forest sounds, or catch up with your walking buddy. (Two of my favourite things about bushwalking! )

The Cascades Bridge Pemberton

The Cascades Bridge

Once you’re deep in the forest, you’ll reach another gravel road. Cross over this and now the trail starts showing some attitude, taking a few sharp ups and downs that will get the heart pumping.

Soon enough, you’ll hear the sound of running water and spot the Cascades Bridge, which is still used today by Pemberton’s tourist tram. From here, you’ll easily find the Cascades by following the boardwalk over the brook.

The Cascades Pemberton

The Cascades looking glorious even in mid December.

The Cascades boardwalk

The Cascades timber boardwalk leads you up and around Lefroy Brook.

A lot of care has been put into the facilities of the Cascades. There are picnic tables, information shelters and a wide timber boardwalk that gives you a good view of the falls.

The best thing is that even with all of this infrastructure, you can still get up close to the Cascades. In fact, if you’re careful, you can walk right out on to the rocks and find a spot to daydream alongside the water. On the very soggy and slippery day of our visit, we opted to follow the boardwalk further upstream to check out the more tranquil parts of Lefroy Brook.

Lefroy Brook looks peaceful but lampreys lurk beneath the surface.

 

Overall, The Cascades Walk is wonderful way to escape in the Karri forest and see one of the South West’s prettiest waterfalls. Plus, the dense forest means the trail is cool, damp and shady even on warmer days. Whether you go one way or take the return trail, add the Cascades Walk to your Southern Forests to-do list.


Map & Directions


The Cascades Walk is located in the Gloucester National Park which is located on Burma Road, just 5 minutes drive from the Pemberton town centre.

Once you’ve paid your $12 park fee, you can enter and drive through to the carpark. The beginning of the trail follows the same route at the Gloucester Route, which is marked with the yellow Bibbulmun Track sign.

Palm Terrace Walk: A different side of the Lesmurdie Falls

Lesmurdie Falls Palm terrace

Don’t go chasing waterfalls, when you have them and more on the Palm Terrace Walk.

Need to know info

Distance: 6.5km + extra to see the falls
Where: Forrestfield/Lesmurdie, 35 minutes from Perth
Time: 2 hours
Difficulty: Moderate
Stuff you’ll need: Hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, water & sturdy enclosed shoes


Why do this

If you’ve never been to the Lesmurdie Falls, you should. It’s arguably Perth’s best waterfall, and thanks to this year’s wet winter, it’s looking more magnificent than ever.

The only downside to this natural wonder is that its official walk is little more than a quick 2km climb from top to bottom. Sure, it’s a beautiful 2 kilometres with incredible views, but if you’re a keen walker, it’s not enough to get that wonderful ‘I’ve-been-on-a-hike’ feeling you get from a longer walk. Plus, if you head out on the weekend, your two kilometres are shared with the families, tourists and locals vying for the best Instagram shot ( We’ve all been that person.)

Luckily there is a solution – The Palm Terrace Walk.

The trail begins in the Falls carpark located the end of Palm Terrace.  It feels wrong, but the trail starts by walking away from the bush, between the four large rocks on the far side of carpark.

Take the left fork and walk until you reach a t-junction, turn left to follow the edge of private property. From here on you’ll need to keep an eye out for beige triangle trail markers. The little triangles are not in the most obvious positions and are often hidden by shrubs or trees. It can be frustrating but think of it as a chance to use your nature adventurer direction skills.

Palm Terrace Walk

Catch a glimpse of a tiny Perth city and beyond.

As a general rule, the first half of the trail leads you up a hill towards the escarpment.  This stretch of the trail is a constant incline, so be prepared to work up a sweat. Luckily there are excellent views of the falls and coastal plain to take your mind off the climb. Once you reach the top, you’ll skirt along some more private properties and then reach a road. At this point, the little beige triangles almost disappear completely. (Nice one Kalamunda Shire!)

Palm Terrace Walk flood

Be warned, parts of the trail are a bit damp…to say the least!

Don’t worry; just follow this road until you reach a carpark. Once you’re here, head down the stairs, past the picnic area and turn right along the brook towards what are known as the cascades. (Alternatively, at this point you can sneak in a quick look of the falls by turning left and then retracing your steps to join the trail again – Choose your own adventure!)

When the water level is high, these cascades make a pretty spot to stop for rest, but if you’re in a rush, cross the bridge, head straight up the hill and turn right to climb the last incline of the walk – at this point you’ll understand why I used this walk as practice for the Inca Trail.

Remains of a mystery building.

Remains of a mystery building.

After this last climb, you’ll reach a communications tower and the ruins of an old building. I’m not sure what the purpose of this little building was, but today it’s functioning as a garden bed for grass trees and orchids. From this point of the walk, it’s all downhill, with glorious coastal plain views and hillsides covered in colourful hovea, hibertia, myrtle and coneflowers.

 

Once you’ve made your way back to Palm Terrace Road, you can take that enticing trail along the creek to the base of the falls. Even if you’re tired from the walk, you’ll want to explore the waterfall, maybe even going as far as climbing up to touch it as it cascades down the granite rock face.

Wildflowers Palm Terrace Walk

Coneflowers adding splashes of pink to the hillside.

Along with the views, the flexibility is one of my favourite things about the Palm Terrace Walk – you can tailor it to your mood. You can take the full trail. You can cut it short at the halfway mark and head to the waterfall. Or you can even lengthen it with the interconnecting Lewis Road Walk. Even with the dodgy of signage, it’s pretty hard to get too lost, just listen for the thundering sound of the falls and you’ll find yourself heading in the right direction.

So, if you like your waterfalls to come with a few extra kilometres of hill climbs, make sure you check out the Palm Terrace Walk.

Palm Terrace Walk

This hill of grasstrees is sure to be joined by wildflowers in the next few weeks.


Map & Directions

The trail begins in the lower carpark of Lesmurdie Falls National Park, located on Palm Terrace in Forrestfield.

One of the more easy to spot trail markers.

One of the more easy to spot trail markers.

Look for the 4 large gravel boulders which mark the entry of the trail. Take the left fork; and then turn left at the T junction. From here on, look for the beige-ish trail markers.

 

Exploring Bells Rapids

View of Bells Rapids

With plenty of winter rain, now is the time to visit Bells Rapids

Need to know info

Distance: 2km or 3.5km
Where: Brigadoon, 45 minutes from Perth
Time: 1-2 hours
Difficulty: Easy
Stuff you’ll need: Hat, sunscreen, water & sturdy enclosed shoes that you’re not afraid to get dirty.


Why do this


Nothing says winter more than the rumble of a flowing river – and there is nowhere in Perth better to see this than Bells Rapids.

Bells Rapids

The well and truly running rapids.

Located in the Swan Valley, Bells Rapids is a stretch of the Swan River that thunders over boulders, churning up masses of white foam. It’s a popular spot to watch the Avon Descent; and if our recent visit is anything to go by, a popular spot for walkers and their four legged friends.

Foam at Bells Rapids

The kind of foam a cappuccino lover can only dream of.

There are two official walking trails on offer at Bells Rapids:
1. The River walk is a 2.5km trail that follows the river. To begin the trail, follow the left path once you cross the bridge.
2. The Goat Walk is a 3km trail that leads you to the top of a hill for some sweeping views over the Swan Valley. To begin the trail, follow the right path once you cross the bridge.

Having explored the Goat Walk in the past, we decided upon the River Walk. While the official trail only takes you downstream, there is a small path upstream that you can follow before you cross the bridge. Always keen to explore more, we ventured along this extra path and it rewarded us with a peaceful river setting and some glimpses of Spoonbills and red-chested Scarlet Robins.

Swan River Brigadoon

The calm before the rapids.

After this little detour, we turned back to join the offical trail, along with the other walkers and their dogs. If you’re looking for a dog-friendly day out, Bells Rapids is a great choice – just as long as you’re not bothered by muddy fur and paws on the car ride home.We saw several very happy yet very dirty dogs having the time of their lives while playing along the river’s edge.

bells 2

The rocks and puddles of the River Walk Trail at Bells Rapids

It’s not just the dogs who are at risk on getting messy though. Due to the winter rain, the trail is quite muddy, so this is probably not the walk to wear your fancy new trainers. Instead, embrace your inner child and commit to climbing over the smooth rocks and through the puddles until you reach the end of the trail.  From here you can turn back, or easily continue uphill and connect to the Goat Walk trail and catch those coastal plain views.

While I know I have been talking up the wintery-ness of Bells Rapids, it does make for an interesting summer adventure too. Earlier this year, we visited when the rapids were nothing more than a trickle. The smooth river stones that are usually hidden by the water were exposed, providing a whole new to landscape to explore. I don’t have a photo so you’ll just have trust me when I say that the dry river bed, with its metres of water-worn black rock, looked like the setting for a spooky sci-fi film. Wonderful in a weird kind of way.

To wrap up, Bells Rapids is worth adding to your winter adventure list. It’s not really the place for a lengthy hike, but it’s a nice, leisurely day adventure. My sweet toothed tip is to check out the rapids and then stop at the House of Honey on Great Northern Highway. Here you can grab a delicious honey ice cream or slab of honey cake and and reclaim any of the calories you might have lost walking. Definitely worth it.


Map & Directions

The Bells Rapids carpark is located at the end of Cathedral Avenue, Brigadoon.
From here the rapids are pretty easy to find, just listen out for roar.

Lane Poole Reserve: More than the King Jarrah Trail

The upside of being unprepared.

Not all nature adventures go to plan. Sometimes the reason why is out of your control, like a change in weather, or a less than friendly animal encounter. Other times, it’s down to your poor planning and is completely your own fault. This week, it was the latter reason that led to us changing our plans and our walking route.

The plan was to tackle the King Jarrah Trail; an 18km trail that winds through the jarrah forests of Dwellingup. We got up early (for us), packed our water and supplies, then set off to Lane Poole Reserve where the trail begins. Dwellingup is a 1 hour and 40 minute drive from the city, so by the time we had arrived we had consumed a lot of coffee, a lot of sugar and were more than ready to get walking. However, one thing we hadn’t counted on was a “Trail closed for fire damage” poster plastered on the entrance of the King Jarrah Trail. Yep, we didn’t think to check to see if the trail was open. Rookie mistake. 

If you’re planning on going to national park, always check the Department of Parks and Wildlife’s alert page. It will tell you if there are any closures or emergency alerts, like flood or bushfires. A two-minute check of this site will not only save you a wasted trip, it could potentially save your life. Anyway, back to the story. 

At this point our Nature Monday plan was ruined. But luckily for us, it was ruined in the best possible place. Lane Poole Reserve is not only beautiful, it also has tonnes of nature goodness on offer. There’s sections of the Munda Biddi Trail and The Bibbulmun Track to explore, kayaking, bike paths and plenty of other, albeit smaller, walk trails to choose from –  this is probably why it’s one of Perth’s most popular camping spots.

Lane Poole Reserve

The kayak friendly Murray River.

(Unofficial) Murray River Walk
Once we parked and got hold of map (here you go), we could see what other non-King-Jarrah-Trail options we could choose from. We were intending to find an actual trail but we got sidetracked and headed to the sound of gushing water. After exploring what turned out to be the Nanga Falls, we found ourselves on short but well-worn track along the edge of the Murray River. With several rope swings and tracks leading to campsites along the way, the trail was the obvious handiwork of many years of campers. The trail took us over huge fallen logs, through blackberry thickets and down slippery mudslides – which was surprisingly a lot of fun. Who doesn’t want to feel like Indiana Jones every now and then?

echidna

Those spikes in the centre are an echidna!

What was even more exciting was…
wait for it… WE MET AN ECHIDNA ON THE TRAIL!
Just in case you don’t know, I’ve always wanted to see an echidna in the wild, and finally my wish came true.
Because I lack any self control, I screamed in excitement, which sent the poor little guy waddling off under a bush. Sorry echidna! And sorry to you, as I didn’t get any photos except this blurry shot of his spines.

After our echidna experience, we continued on until we reached a set of rapids, which filled the water with masses of white foam. This is where the trail ended, so not wanting to trample through the undergrowth; we turned back, ready for the next adventure.

Lane Poole Reserve

The tall jarrahs line the Nanga Brook Trail.

mushy 3

The fun little guys!

Nanga Brook Trail 
Our next stop was the Nanga Brook Trail. Another small walk, this 4km trail follows the Nanga Brook through to the old Nanga Mill site. This trail is less of bushwalk, more of a pathway as it crosses through clearings and picnic sites. However, it’s still interesting, especially if you’re keen to read and learn about the history of the old mill site. Not to mention, the abundance of mushrooms, fungi and moss along this track weas incredible. A must for any fungus fan!

 

Island Pool Trail
A 10 minute drive from Nanga Brook, the deceptively named Island Pool Trail was the last stop on our Lane Poole Reserve tour. Expecting more riverside adventure, we were surprised to find this 2km trail is actually a steep loop that takes you up through jarrah forest. What this trail lacked in islands, it made up with views over the hills and beyond. Plus, it added a great little burst of cardio to our relaxed day. (To clear up the mystery, the trail is located opposite the Island Pool campsite, so the name is not completely misleading.)

island pool view

Definitely no islands on this trail!

Not wanting to drive home in the dark, we decided to call it a day after the Island Pool Trail. While we may not have conquered the King Jarrah Trail, we still had an excellent time at Lane Poole Reserve. We ended up exploring some smaller trails we probably would have overlooked and I finally achieved my echidna encounter dream. Maybe there is an upside to being unprepared!

To wrap up this post, I can’t recommend Lane Poole Reserve enough. While it is a bit of trek for a day trip; the landscape, the river, and the serenity make drive worthwhile. If you can’t squeeze a visit into one day, why not get some friends together and stay the night?
I’m definitely adding a Dwellingup camping trip to my to-do list, oh, and the King Jarrah Trail of course!

Lane Poole Reserve

Another shot of the Mirror-like Murray.

Map & Directions


Lane Poole Reserve covers over 55,000ha, so there are many campsites and parking areas that make good starting points. Lane Poole Reserve is a national park so it does have the standard $12 per car entry fee.

If you’re keen to explore the Nanga Brook area or the King Jarrah Trail, the best place to park and begin is at the Nanga Mill campsite, off Nanga Road.

The Rocky Pool Walk

rocky pools walk

Rocky Pool – More valleys than you can shake a stick at.

Distance: 5 kms
Where: Kalamunda National Park , 40 minutes from Perth
Time: 1.5 – 2 hours
Difficulty: Moderate. There are VERY steep slopes. Luckily most of them are downhill.
Stuff you’ll need: Hat, sunscreen, water and sturdy enclosed shoes.


Why Do This
With a name like ‘Rocky Pool’, I probably don’t need to explain the main reason to go on this walk. Yes, as you’d expect, you will find waterfalls and rocks pools on this walk during winter, spring and early summer.

Rocky Pool Walk

The Rocky Pool in all of their winter an spring glory.

Rocky Pool in Summer

Rocky Pool after a hot summer.

However, during these drier months, the rocky pools aren’t the only drawcard this walk has to offer. What impressed me during this walk were valley views, or to be more precise, the amount and variety of them. Every time you climb or descend a slope, you’ll discover a new view that will have you reaching for your camera. While these hills are far from mountainous, they’re pretty impressive for a city that has a reputation for being flatter than a pancake.

Rocky Pools Walk

Relax, you only have to walk down this, not up.

Speaking of hills, this walk does have a few slopes that will test your ankle strength. The Rocky Pool Walk is a mix of narrow winding paths and wide fire trails.
Surprisingly, it’s the car-width fire trails that prove to be the most difficult. During the last half of the walk, you’ll come across downhill slopes that seem almost vertical, but don’t worry, if you take it slow, you should be fine. On that note, leave the thongs and ballet flats at home this time – sturdy shoes or boots are a must for this walk.

Besides these few slippery areas, the Rocky Pools walk is moderately easy trail that rewards you with views, pretty rock pools to explore and if our experience is anything to go by, the chance to see a kangaroo or two.

walk trails perth

Skippy and his mate. Neither were the least bit concerned by the two humans stomping on their home turf.

 

 


Map & Directions 

Park at the end of Spring Road, Kalamunda. (Check out my dream home on the left while you’re there.) On this trail you’ll see a bunch of signs; stick to the blue arrows and you should be fine.

The blue arrows are your friends.

The blue arrows are your friends.

1. To begin the walk, take a left up the hill that runs along side the houses.
2. Follow the obvious trail. When you get to the first awesome valley view, you’ll see a path that takes you to the left. Ignore that, keep going straight.
3. Keep following the blue signs and be careful on the slopes!
4. When you reach the bottom of the valley, you’ll notice that the signage gets a bit sketchy.  Head left through the small grove of trees to find a bridge.
5. Cross the bridge and head forwards towards the giant electricity pylons. Follow the track as it veers right.
6. You’ve reached Rocky Pools. Once you’ve finished exploring, ignore the yellow Bibbulmum Track snake signs and keep going forward on the wide trail.
7. You’ll spot some maroon posts. Look for the blue arrow on your right and enter the path that takes you back to your start point. (Half way up the hill, keep an eye out for the giant boulder on your left, it’s a great place to climb and test your fear of heights.)