A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about nature's day trips from perth

Lesmurdie Falls

Nature's Day Trips from Perth with Toddlers

all seasons in one day
View Nature's Day Trips from Perth with Toddlers on Goannaray's travel map.

large_P9210144.jpg

Lesmurdie falls are located in Lesmurdie Falls National Park, within Mundy Regional Park. The falls themselves are rather spectacular after recent rains, but expect to enjoy more rock climbing activities than water flowing activities during summer, or when there hasn't been rain for a while. The variety of wildflowers in late winter and throughout spring are also rather impressive to see.

P9210088.jpgP9210142.jpgPA050179.jpgP9210091.jpg

Panorama_1..urdie_Falls.jpg








There are two main access points to the falls. One at the top, and one at the bottom of the falls:

  • Top of the falls

Falls Rd, Lesmurdie - This access point has a carpark, picnic tables, toilets, trail and park information sign.

  • Bottom of the falls

Palm Tce, Forrestfield - This access point has a carpark, picnic tables, trail information sign.









Top of the Falls
Following the path down past the shaded picnic tables, you'll find a sign showing you the options of following the brook upstream to the cascades (150m), or downstream to the lookouts over Lesmurdie Falls (320m). These lookouts provide great views over both the falls and out through the valley to Perth. If you have toddlers that like to explore and climb like ours do, you may want to keep a close eye on them near the lookouts as there's plenty of toddler enticing things to see/do not far from the path, right beside the sharp drop.

View over Perth from top side of Lesmurdie Falls

View over Perth from top side of Lesmurdie Falls

Cascades above Lesmurdie Falls

Cascades above Lesmurdie Falls

Top of Lesmurdie Falls

Top of Lesmurdie Falls

Top section of Lesmurdie Falls

Top section of Lesmurdie Falls

For those wanting to use a pram, the main concrete path leading down past the picnic tables does have several sections of steps. At present, there is the availability of going on the gravel beside the steps, but I'm not sure how long it will be before this gets eroded too much. Diverting off the concrete path near the first picnic table to follow a vehicle access track down to the track beside Lesmurdie Brook is another alternative. Whichever way you choose, you'll be able to get to the top of the first lookout, but that'll be it before more difficult and lengthier steps will require pram abandonment.

PA101459.jpgPA050175.jpg

There are also some other trails leading off from this track above the falls, which will take you through the bush on the surrounding hillsides. Providing further great views of Perth and it's surrounds. Continuing further down the track from the lookouts at the top of the falls, you're able to walk down to the bottom of the falls. Bearing in mind that unless you have someone to pick you up from the entrance point down there, you'll need to make the return trip up the hill!

270_PA101462.jpgPA050198.jpg

The first time I explored this area, I was about 6months pregnant, and had a rather energetic (except for going up hills!) 1.5yr old tagging along who wanted to jump off every rock she could find! I think I made it about a third of the way down before deciding to head back and see if there was a different access point to reach the base of the falls.

Bottom of the Falls
Whenever we're wanting a quick bush getaway for a few hours, this is one of the sites we most frequently visit. One, because its very close to where we currently live, and two, because it's a nice easy place to let the kids pretty much run free and explore as much as they want (bit more cautious of snakes during the warmer months though!).

Gumnut discovery

Gumnut discovery

Running down rocks

Running down rocks

This track mum!

This track mum!

Splash!

Splash!

Trying to pick some flowers

Trying to pick some flowers

Finding smooth rocks

Finding smooth rocks

The track to the base of Lesmurdie Falls from the Palm Tce car park follows along beside Lesmurdie Brook (480m). Prams can make it nearly halfway along the track, up to the second bench seat. After that there's quite a few rocks to navigate. Once you reach what looks like the end of the track, it is quite easy to walk/climb beside the rock wall of the hill beside you to get right to the base of the falling water.

Lesmurdie Falls

Lesmurdie Falls

Climbing with Grandad

Climbing with Grandad

If you don't want to hike to the top of the falls, yet still want to get a different perspective of them, Lion's Lookout is not far up the side of the hill. The start of both the track up to Lion's Lookout, and up to the top of the falls are signposted along the main Lesmurdie Brook track. Once on the Lion's Lookout Track, you will need to take the left fork when it branches to get to the lookout. At the moment this track is being slowly overgrown in places, otherwise not too bad.

Here's the sign...

Here's the sign...

Lesmurdie Falls from Lion's Lookout

Lesmurdie Falls from Lion's Lookout

Too much bush mum!

Too much bush mum!

So whichever access point you want to use, enjoy the falls, the views, and all that nature has to offer :)

Posted by Goannaray 14:16 Archived in Australia Tagged waterfalls walks western_australia perth creeks toddlers lesmurdie_falls nature's_day_trips_from_perth Comments (0)

John Forrest National Park

Nature's day trips from Perth with Toddlers

all seasons in one day
View Nature's Day Trips from Perth with Toddlers on Goannaray's travel map.

270_P9061227.jpg270_PA211518.jpg270_P9191367.jpg

We’d previously driven past this national park numerous times a year when heading into or out of Perth, but had never gone in to have a look. So this year we decided to change that and check it out. Finding that several trips were in order to fully appreciate each of the main attractions. Making for some very enjoyable days out in nature.

History

The park is enveloped by the cultural history of the Nyoongar people who lived nearby or traveled through the area, and also further colonised history, as the original eastern rail line ran through there from 1896 – 1966. During the Great Depression of the 1930’s, sustenance workers also did a lot of work in and around the parks headquarters, helping to make it the wonderful place it is today.

National Park Station

National Park Station

Train Crash

Train Crash

Swan View Tunnel

Swan View Tunnel

As one of the parks’ information brochures explains, the area was originally declared as a conservation reserve in 1898. Making it the oldest national park in WA. It later become John Forrest National Park in 1947 in honour of the famous explorer and statesman, Sir John Forrest (Premier of WA 1890-1901).

Access

As this is a National Park, there is an entrance fee (currently $12/vehicle without annual pass), and depending on what you’re wanting to do, there are several access points to the John Forrest National Park. The three main entrances that access the national park headquarters and developed area are located off the Great Eastern Highway between Midland and Mundaring.

Lookout over Perth

Lookout over Perth

The first signed entrance when heading east away from Perth is opposite the Bilgoman Aquatic Centre, which takes you on a scenic drive through part of the park before reaching the entrance toll booth. Near the beginning of this road is a lookout point allowing you to look west over Perth towards the coast. Take note that the gates on this road are shut by 4pm daily, so it’s recommended that all visitors should exit this area by 3:45pm to avoid being locked in!

Gate deadline...

Gate deadline...

The second entrance isn’t as well sign posted, but is the shortest route into the main park area. And the final entrance road is opposite the Glen Forrest Shopping Centre.

For parking and walk in access to various walks and sites, without having to pay to go through the main entrance, Pechey Rd in Swan View, Toodyay Rd between Red Hill and the Red Hill Auditorium entrance, and Victoria Rd in Hovea are other possibilities.

Things to see and do

There are quite a few tracks available to explore including the John Forrest Heritage Trail, which is a section of the Railway Reserve Heritage Trail (RRHT). Some tracks are wheelchair accessible, some are for walkers only, others allow bicycles, and some that pass through the park boundary also allow horses and dogs for the sections located outside of the national park. All of these tracks allow you to enjoy the natural bush and wildlife of the area.

John Forest Heritage Trail

John Forest Heritage Trail

With regards to prams, we found both the RRHT and narrower trails between the main attractions that we visited were quite suitable and relatively flat. There were also informative signs located along the RRHT explaining various interesting points, but not along the narrower walk trails.

Waiting for mum!

Waiting for mum!

Riding... riding...

Riding... riding...

Train, arrow, waterfall, tunnel... I choose... waterfall!

Train, arrow, waterfall, tunnel... I choose... waterfall!

As explained further below, the gardens and picnic areas are also rather nice for young and old to be able to enjoy.

Some of the main highlights or sights to see include:

Swan View Tunnel

Swan View Tunnel

Swan View Tunnel

Swan View Tunnel

Inside Swan View Tunnel

Inside Swan View Tunnel

This is a 340m long inactive railway tunnel built in 1894-95 for the Eastern Railway. The jointed granite, and clay seams in the area caused difficulty with the construction, requiring a masonry-lined face to prevent rock falls. This however reduced the inner diameter of the tunnel, which along with the steep gradient, caused smoke accumulation. This resulted in near-asphyxiation of train crews, with the first serious incident occurring in 1903. The worst accident in the tunnel was in 1942 when several train crew workers were asphyxiated, causing one death. A new line was built around the tunnel for trains going up (east), which was completed in 1945. This Eastern Railway line route was finally closed in February 1966, coinciding with the opening of the new eastern rail route through the Avon Valley. (References and further information: ...1... ...2... ...3...).

Light at the end of the tunnel!

Light at the end of the tunnel!

Hint: Remember to take a torch! It is doable in the dark, but some form of light source is definitely appreciated. Especially if you’re riding a bike and there’s still puddles around. We forgot a torch, but managed to get through the tunnel ok using an assistive light app I had on my phone.

Shall we go through?

Shall we go through?

The bike stayed upright!

The bike stayed upright!

From the main picnic area of the national park, it’s about a 5km return trip along the RRHT. Going this way, you’ll pass the National Park Falls along the way. Or for free access and a shorter walk, you can park near the Pechey Rd, Morrison Rd, Swan View Rd intersection and walk or ride in to the tunnel from there.

large_P9061244_-_P9061248_JPG.jpg

  • National Park Falls

Jane Brook drops sharply over about a 20m rock face before continuing to flow through further boulders, creating a rather picturesque scene. Late winter and spring (especially after recent rains) are the best times to view these and Hovea Falls as the brook generally dries up over summer.

Hold on... Look...

Hold on... Look...

Don't go too far!

Don't go too far!

Exploring around National Park Falls

Exploring around National Park Falls

Exploring the rocks and bush around these falls with toddlers can be both a lot of fun, yet also slightly stressful. Requiring the need for you to constantly know where they are and what they’re doing, as there are both water and cliff hazards that they may not necessarily recognise.

National Park Falls Lookout

National Park Falls Lookout

In the water, out the water, in, out, in, out ...

In the water, out the water, in, out, in, out ...

National Park Falls

National Park Falls

It’s about a 2km return trip from the picnic area along the RRHT. An alternative route is following a section of the Eagle View Walk Trail which follows along the northern side of the Jane Brook (RRHT is on the southern side). Being a narrower trail and closer to the brook, this track provides a slightly different perspective of the brook and surrounding bush compared to the RRHT. The variety of flowers available to see along this track during spring is also rather spectacular.

DSC_0073.jpgDSC_0158.jpgDSC_0075.jpg
270_PA211542.jpgDSC_0166.jpgDSC_0160.jpg
DSC_0147.jpgDSC_0137.jpgDSC_0155.jpg

Or, if you’re prepared for a slightly longer walk, you can park near the Pechey Rd, Morrison Rd, Swan View Rd intersection and walk or ride in past the tunnel.

  • The national park main picnic and entrance area

As mentioned above, a lot of work was completed during the Great Depression of the 1930’s as part of relief employment, including gardens, paths, picnic shelters, and other infrastructure. It may appear more run down now than what it did then, but it is still a really nice place to enjoy a picnic and relaxing time out in nature (barbecues are also located throughout the picnic areas).

Picnic shelter

Picnic shelter

Hello!

Hello!

Sit here mum

Sit here mum

The kids (myself included!) really enjoyed exploring the numerous paths and interesting picnic shelters scattered throughout the extensive native gardens. Being able to set up lunch while the kids played nearby in the creek was also nice. Something to note however… Watch out for the magpies and twenty eight parrots who like to steal food from your plate/hands before (or even as), it enters your mouth! Miss 3yr old Sonia was none too happy when the cheese on the sandwich she was about to devour disappeared in a whoosh of wind and feathers brushing her head from a rather pleased and successful magpie!!

Picnic lunch time!

Picnic lunch time!

Twenty Eight

Twenty Eight

Paddling

Paddling

Magpie

Magpie

The John Forest Tavern is also located here, with some rather yummy food available. The tavern staff put feed out for the kangaroos as well, so about mid-afternoon, you’re pretty well guaranteed to see a good sized mob of kangaroos up nice and close if you wish to. From bigger older ones, right down to small joey’s.

Kangaroos

Kangaroos

large_P9191358_stitch_crop.jpg

  • Hovea Falls

These falls occur where the Jane Brook cascades down a large granite sheet, occasionally weaving amongst bigger boulders sitting on top of the massive rock face. Not as spectacular as the National Park Falls if you prefer typical falling style waterfalls, but still very impressive in its own way.

large_P9191362_-_P9191365_JPG.jpg

Once again, constant monitoring of toddlers is required for water and fall hazards. Another thing we found to watch out for leading up to and around this area was meat ants. After quite a few unhappy encounters, followed by repetitive education and instruction (with frequent reminders!), Sonia finally realised that they weren’t too bad if you kept moving and stayed away from where their nests and trails were located.

large_P9191368_-_P9191370_JPG.jpg

From the main picnic area, it’s about a 2km return trip along the RRHT. If you’d prefer to walk down amongst the bush closer to the Jane Brook, there is also a nice track available to do that. Or, for free access, you can park at the end of Victoria Rd and walk in from there.

270_PA211530.jpg270_PA211528.jpgPA211535_stitch_crop.jpg
  • Glen Brook Dam

You see and pass this dam upon entry into the national park through the main entrance point. There is a walk trail leading around the dam’s perimeter (Approx 2.2km), but unfortunately there are signs up to say ‘Swimming not allowed’ due to the disturbance this would cause to the animals who use the dam as a refuge and feeding area. According to one of the signs there, the water is also neither treated or quality monitored, and is mainly used for watering the gardens and fire fighting.

No swimming <img class='img' src='http://www.travellerspoint.com/img/emoticons/icon_sad.gif' width='15' height='15' alt=':(' title='' />

No swimming :(

Glen Brook Dam

Glen Brook Dam

Glen Brook Dam sign

Glen Brook Dam sign

  • Rocky Pool

As the name suggests, it’s a rocky pool in the Jane Brook, not far from where the brook exits the national park. So far I’ve only seen this area with very little water present in the lead up to summer. Lots of fun clambering around and over the abundance of rocks that make up the stream bed, and exploring the few remaining pools of water. From this, I could imagine that during winter with a better water level, it would be rather nice, with quite a few small rapids along this section of the brook.

Bridge near Rocky Pool

Bridge near Rocky Pool

Flower

Flower

Parking is located on Pechey Rd near where the brook goes under a bridge in the road. Tracks lead off in different directions from here, heading to different locations within the national park. So you could access this area from within the national park if you wished.

I have not completed this trail, but as the trail brochure states ...

The Eagle View Walk Trail is a 15-kilometre bushwalking circuit that leads you to several of John forrest national park’s less explored destinations. The trail is a bushwalker’s delight, covering a variety of relatively pristine habitats. It’s also more challenging than other trails in the park, but your efforts are well rewarded. Be sensible and allow plenty of time for the walk which, depending on your level of fitness, will take from about four and half to seven hours. This also depends on your interest in your surroundings as you go along.

Another good source of information about the trail can be found on the Inspiration Outdoors website.

So there you go, another excellent, not too far away place that’s just waiting to be explored and enjoyed :)

(References: Historical and other detailed information (not attained from personal experience) was obtained from the associated links inserted into the blog.)



Posted by Goannaray 22:16 Archived in Australia Tagged waterfalls walks tunnel picnic western_australia toddlers nature's_day_trips_from_perth john_forrest_national_park Comments (0)

Whistlepipe Gully

Natures day trips from Perth with toddlers

all seasons in one day
View Nature's Day Trips from Perth with Toddlers on Goannaray's travel map.

Whistlepipe Gully

P5170741.jpgPB081660.jpg270_PB081671.jpg
  • Location / Access points

- Whistlepipe Gully is located in Mundy Regional Park between Kalamunda and Forrestfield.
- Top of gully - the end of Orange Valley Rd, Kalamunda.
- Download Map...
- Bottom of gully - the end of Lewis Rd, Forrestfield.

PB081672.jpgWaiting in the shade...

Waiting in the shade...

270_PB081673.jpg
  • Pram access

- From top of gully - I wouldn't recommend it. It doesn't take long before rocks and erosion on the track make it far too difficult.
- From bottom of gully - Perfectly fine up to the house remains. The walk from the Lewis Rd parking area up to the remnants of Wallace Greenham's house is on an old road. Some sections semi sealed, some gravel.

Wait for me!  Boots... Off!

Wait for me! Boots... Off!

Splash!

Splash!

Paddling fun

Paddling fun

Wallace Greenham's house remnants

Wallace Greenham's house remnants

How deep can I go?

How deep can I go?

Whistlepipe Gully Creek

Whistlepipe Gully Creek

Righto, this way, lets go...

Righto, this way, lets go...

  • What we liked...

- The walk and whole area is much nicer when water's flowing and flowers are out. Summer can get rather hot and dry.
- Not far into the walk from the bottom of the gully at the Lewis Rd end is a short, slightly overgrown track that leads in to a large rock near the creek. We found it to be a nice spot for the kids to paddle, or be able to just sit, relax and enjoy the atmosphere.
- Wallace Greenham's house remains. Lots of fun clambering around, trying to imagine what it would've looked like... how it all would've worked... wondering why it's now gone. You do have to watch out for kids slipping and falling down the rock water slide though!
- Numerous nice spots along the creek. Rather picturesque, and fun to play in. Especially for toddlers, and those who're kids at heart!

270_PB081668.jpg90_PB081633.jpg270_PB081656.jpg
  • What we did not like...

- Meat ants!! They're nearly everywhere, and come out with a vengeance in hot weather.

270_PB081664.jpgPicnic lunch

Picnic lunch

PB081658.jpg
  • Other miscellaneous points...

- Dogs are allowed.
- I would love to see the plans for the house, or photo's if any exist. If they're available to see anywhere, let me know!
- Otherwise... I hope you enjoy this bush escape as much as we do.
- Edit 04/11/2016: Here's a great link for further information for those who're interested. Many thanks to 'mgglasby' for commenting and pointing me in the direction of this site.



Posted by Goannaray 05:13 Archived in Australia Tagged waterfalls history walk creek western_australia toddlers nature's_day_trips_from_perth whistlepipe_gully Comments (2)

Walyunga National Park

semi-overcast
View Nature's Day Trips from Perth with Toddlers & Overnight Toddler Getaways from Perth on Goannaray's travel map.

Falls near Syds Rapids

Falls near Syds Rapids

Location / Access

  • Walyunga National Park is located about one hour north of Perth at the end of Walyunga Road off the Great Northern Highway.
  • National Park access fees apply.
  • Note to remember - Try to bring notes for honesty self pay envelopes. We struggled trying to get a fairly large number of coins spread between several envelopes to fit through the posting slot!
  • Being this close to Perth, it makes for a great day trip, or a relaxed overnight, or weekend stay.
Canoeing

Canoeing

Kookaburra

Kookaburra

Kayaking

Kayaking

Facilities

  • There are two main parking and picnic areas with toilets, gas barbecues, and picnic tables.
  • Walyunga Pool - I consider this the bigger and better of the two picnic areas. Wheelchair accessible facilities and nice views over the river.
  • Boongerup Pool - Not as easily accessed facilities.

Walyunga Pool

Walyunga Pool

Syds rapids

Syds rapids

Avon River Slalom Course

Avon River Slalom Course

Walks

image_2_.jpgimage_7_.jpg

Canoeing / Kayaking

  • The Avon Descent runs through here over the first weekend of August, with Syds Rapids being a good spot for spectators.
  • Boongerup Pool is fairly long, with steeper access banks, so we found not quite as good for young kids.
  • A slalom section is located between Boongerup Pool and Walyunga Pool.
  • Walyunga Pool is a smaller pool than Boongerup, but has a more beach like entry which we found great for younger kids.
  • Water levels can vary greatly between summer and winter depending on rains.
  • Watch out for kids when water levels are higher.
Hammock camping

Hammock camping

Breakfast...

Breakfast...

Camping

  • Bookings need to be pre-arranged with the ranger, who will provide access codes to get through the gate to the camping area.
  • The camping area is located off the main road along an unsealed track.
  • Facilities include fire pits, picnic tables and a pit toilet.

Posted by Goannaray 21:21 Archived in Australia Tagged river walk kayak camping western_australia canoe avon_river toddlers weekend_toddler_adventures_wa avon_descent day_trips_from_perth nature's_day_trips_from_perth walyunga_national_park Comments (0)

Lake Leschenaultia

overcast
View Nature's Day Trips from Perth with Toddlers on Goannaray's travel map.

We've found Lake Leschenaultia to be a great spot for either a day trip, or a camping trip from Perth.

Lake Leschenaultia

Lake Leschenaultia

It's an old railway dam, that is now a recreational lake near Chidlow.

Some of the many things available there are:
- Swimming
- Canoeing
- Camping
- Bush walking
- Bike riding
- Picnicking
- Cafe

Getting warm and enjoying a snack

Getting warm and enjoying a snack

Snack time!

Snack time!

Sandcastles with excavator

Sandcastles with excavator

Buggybuddies Jennie has written a great blog about Lake Leschenaultia, so if you're wanting further information, I recommend you look up or contact the Mundaring Visitor Centre, or read the linked blog.

The kids and I spent an enjoyable, relaxed weekend camping there in October 2015, with one of my sisters joining us for the final day.

Yes, I've got the paddle

Yes, I've got the paddle

Here's the paddle

Here's the paddle

Interesting tree stump

Interesting tree stump

  • The kids highlights of the trip were:

- Kayaking
(Especially being able to paddle the kayak by themselves, thanks to the nice gentle slope of the beach into the lake allowing me to tag along and assist where required)

- Paddling
(Their idea of swimming. My sister and I did take them out to the pontoon once, swimming and carrying/supporting them in their life jackets. It was fun, but considering all of us are hopeless swimmers, we found it rather tiring!)

- Building sandcastles by the water

- Camping

- The toy excavator one of the lake staff gave them to play with

Which way Kaden?

Which way Kaden?

Sonia's turn

Sonia's turn

Back to shore

Back to shore

We didn't walk around the lake on this particular trip, but have done it previously, and found it rather enjoyable. With plenty of interesting things to see and find along the way.

Blue flowers

Blue flowers

Bobtails

Bobtails

Pink/purple flowers

Pink/purple flowers

Dead tree

Dead tree

White flowers

White flowers




Posted by Goannaray 20:40 Archived in Australia Tagged lakes kayaking walks camping canoeing western_australia weekend_toddler_adventures_wa nature's_day_trips_from_perth lake_leschenaultia Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 5 of 5) Page [1]