There’s nothing like spending time walking in the Western Australian karri forest! Last weekend we took ten keen walkers down south where we completed the 56 km section of the Bibbulmun Track between Pemberton and Northcliffe over four days. Below is a short recap of our time.
Day 1: Perth to Pemberton and a 12 km walk
We arrived in Pemberton by lunch time and enjoyed a lovely picnic in a forest clearing. Kate and Andrea bravely climbed 51 metres to the viewing platform at the top of the Diamond Tree while the rest of us contented ourselves with the views from the ground.
The 12 km walk from Pemberton among the karri forest was a great way to stretch the legs, and we arrived at our chalet accommodation that evening contentedly tired. The showers got a workout and the group settled down to some wine and cheese while Simon and I prepared a Moroccan feast for dinner.
Day 2: Forest walk, 19 km
The sun was peeking through the trees as we began our walk in the cool morning air. The day soon warmed up and we worked up a sweat and an appetite as we tackled the hills of the Warren River valley.
A healthy and delicious picnic lunch awaited us at the halfway point and we relaxed in the tranquil setting – with the soft branches of peppermint trees above and the meandering Warren River below. Ahh, we could stay all day…
… or an hour, because we had more walking to do. The afternoon’s walk continued to follow the river and we enjoyed fungi spotting, tree gazing and a nice break beside Blackberry Pool where the sight of the blue sky and forest reflected in the water seemed to have a restorative effect. Good thing, because we had a few more hills to go.
Day 3: Forest and farms, 13.5 km
The drizzle, so common to the area around Pemberton, set in today and we had a lovely mornings walk taking in the frothing karri trunks and the earthy smell of the damp forest floor. By morning tea the rain had stopped for the day and we enjoyed a cuppa with our famous date cake in one of nature’s lounge areas.
Late morning we emerged from the forest for the first time to walk beside the green rolling hills of a farm. Andrea strolled ahead to listen to the birds while the rest of the group employed the walk and talk method to solve the problems of the world. A Bibbulmun Track sign offered us an opportunity for a group photo and we finished the day’s walk by about 2.30 pm. Time for some coffee and retail therapy in Pemberton.
Day 4: 11.5 km walk and back to Perth
We finished the final leg into Northcliffe with ease, discussing the interesting history of Northcliffe and Pemberton’s along the way and enjoying the variety of forest types and farmland. Our walk ended with a celebratory lunch in Northcliffe, followed by some celebratory snoring on the drive back home to Perth.
All in all, it was a great for days walking – great for tree lovers and anyone who wants to complete another section of the Bibbulmun Track without having to carry their gear or camp. It was a great way to see the Pemberton area without coming home with that icky feeling that comes from a lazy weekend away.
Thanks to Marg, Elsie, Ann, Mary, Andrea, Judy, Jenny, Kate, Dee and Gordon for your fantastic company and for making our inaugural walking tour of this section such a success. Here’s to many more to come.