Chuditch campground, Canoeing Island Pool to Bob's Crossing
Fri 21 Oct 2016 - Sun 23 Oct 2016
After moving to Collie, Lane Poole Reserve has become one of the main areas for us and family/friends to get out bush and enjoy some 'away' time together. Mainly due to its location (fairly centrally located between all of us), and the varying things available to see and do.
For this trip, due to late confirmation of everyone's availability and weather, the only pre-bookable sites available to us were at the Chudditch campground (decided we'd avoid Nanga Mill on weekends due to crowds). Considering our plans of canoeing for the weekend, this actually turned out really well because of its location, despite the kids wanting their last campfire for the season, and fires not being allowed at the Chudditch campground. (Toasted marshmallows on the gas stove will suffice if they have to!).
Considering myself and one of my sisters were pregnant, and unable to now physically fit ourselves plus a kid or two into the kayaks we have... we decided we'd utilise the services of Dwellingup Adventures, and hire some canoes for a day trip. We found Dwellingup Adventures to be amazing to deal with. Extremely helpful and accommodating. We decided we'd purposely do a shorter trip (maps and info) so we could take it easy, have fun, enjoy the trip, and relax. So instead of going from Island Pool all the way through to Baden Powell, we requested for the canoes to be dropped off at Island Pool, and picked up at Bob's Crossing (map). This worked extremely well for us. I don't think either us, or the kids would have enjoyed it nearly as much if we'd tried to do the whole length through to Baden Powell.
After growing up and canoeing on faster parts of the Avon River, my sisters and I found the section that we'd chosen to canoe fairly flat and slow. Perfect for introducing two kids to canoeing when you're pregnant! Due to the water levels at the time, and the extra weight of pregnancy, there were a few sections that required at least one of us to get out of the canoes to assist over rocks or logs. We also found that one of the canoes we'd been given had a small leak, requiring an occasional stop to empty it out. Otherwise all good, and we thoroughly enjoyed it!
Recommendations for next time... Remember the sunscreen!!! I'd forgotten that I'd removed the sunscreen from my vehicle's glove box after discovering it'd leaked everywhere several weeks prior... and so with everyone else also forgetting to bring some... we covered up as best we could and amazingly didn't get as burnt as I thought we might have.
Another thing well worth considering if you're hiring canoes, is to hire a dry barrel as well. With kids, canoes, and water (and the occasional small drop over rocks/rapids), having somewhere you can store and keep things dry is greatly appreciated!! We hired one, and were very thankful we had. Otherwise all our snacks, keys, phones... etc. would've been totally soaked by the time we finished.