Walking With Kids

Bushwalking is a fun and healthy outdoor activity which can be enjoyed by all the family. The Bibbulmun Track, Western Australia's world-class long distance walk trail, is right on our doorstep, stretching over 1,000km from the Perth Hills to Albany, through some of the most beautiful and varied natural areas of Australia’s South West.

The Track is maintained to a high standard and with its ease of access and navigation is an ideal  environment to take the family on an adventure to experience the wonders of the bush.

The day and overnight walk suggestions here are aimed to suit all ages and fitness levels. All the walks featured are not more than 1 ½ hours driving distance from Perth.

 

What to take - the basics 

  • Sufficient food and water, sunscreen, insect repellent and clothes appropriate to weather conditions.
  • A plastic bag to take your rubbish home with you – follow the Leave No Trace principles.
  • Some  treats (bribes) in the form of fast energy food such as dried fruit and nuts.
  • A small first aid kit with plasters, tea tree oil, tweezers, Fixomul (for blisters), bandages and scissors.
  • For a more detailed list see Short Walks.


Keeping things interesting

  • Follow the waugal - the Track is signposted with Waugal trail markers (yellow triangle with a black sylised snake) ask your child to find the next one.
  • If you're walking back at dusk, take a torch - waugal trail markers are reflective.
  • Talk to the children about how things smell, the different plants, trees and animals that you may encounter.   A range of bush books are available from the Foundation.
  • Listen to the bird sounds.
  • Take a camera to record your adventure.
  • Encourage older kids to help plan your walk - include map reading and compass skills.

 

Track facts - things you need to know

 

  • The Track is free and for walkers only - no wheeled vehicles or pets allowed.
  • Although the Track is well signposted, make sure you take a map as the Perth Hills are criss-crossed with other trails.
  • You can only access the Track in places where a red car is shown on the map.
  • You cannot drive on the Track or to any of the campsites. 
  • Click here for more information about vehicle access.

 

Staying safe

  • Allow yourself plenty of time so you are not too rushed to stop and rest. Most children aged four to eight walk about two or three kilometres an hour without breaks. Older children may walk up to four kilometres per hour.
  • It is important that you sign your name in the green log books every time you reach the campsite. In case of an emergency, it is used by the Department of Parks and Wildlife rangers to help locate walkers.  You may also like to write in the red register - let your creative juices run wild and describe your walk or tell your fellow walkers of anything of interest or concern.
  • Tell someone where you are going and what time you expect to return.
  • Click here for more information.

 

Day walks 

Planning and preparation of your walk will ensure that you have the most enjoyable experience. This website is a great source of information providing details of what you need to do, pack and think about before you get going for a day walk. 

All the walks listed below are covered by Map 1 Darling Range - which can be purchased online.  It's also important  to check Track Conditions - visit the Darling Range Section by Section Guide before you go. 

Take a picnic morning tea or lunch as the half-way point on all these walks is at a Bibbulmun Track campsite which have a timber shelter, picnic tables, bush toilet and water tank. They are a great place to relax and recharge your batteries before the walk back.

 

Short day walks for little legs - young children aged 4 years and over 

Learning to cook in the bush
Learning to cook in the bush

Return walk from Asher Rd to Hewett’s Hill Campsite

Access and parking: Park your car off the road where the Track crosses Asher Rd.
Approximate walk distance:  3km.
Approximate time: 1 hour walking.
Degree of difficulty: Beginner.
Track features:  An easy walk through the jarrah and marri forest along an earthen gravel pathway to the first campsite from the Northern Terminus in Kalamunda.

 
Return walk from Brookton Hwy to Brookton Campsite

Access and parking: Park your car off-road where the Track passes Brookton Hwy.
Approximate walk distance:  4km.
Approximate time: 1 ¼  hours walking.
Degree of difficulty:   Beginner. 
Track features:  This section has been designed for wheelchair access and is the only section that allows all terrain robust pushchairs. The campsite overlooks a wandoo lined creek.

 

Intermediate day hikes for families with children aged 6 years and over  

Return walk from the Perth Hills Discovery Centre to Ball Creek Campsite

Access and parking: Park your car at the Perth Hills Discovery Centre carpark.
Approximate walk distance:  5km.
Approximate time: 1 ½ hours walking.
Degree of difficulty:   Intermediate.
Track features:  The Track passes through jarrah and wandoo with interpretive signage about the forest along the way.

 
Return walk from Calamunnda Camel Farm (Paulls Valley Rd) to Hewett’s Hill Campsite 

Access and parking: Park your car at the Camel Farm carpark.
Approximate walk distance  7km.
Approximate time: 3 hours walking.
Degree of difficulty:   Intermediate. 
Track features:  Undulating terrain through jarrah and marri forest interspersed with sheoak and banksia. The campsite looks out over rocky outcrops.

 

Advanced day hike suitable for families with children aged 8 years and over. 

 

Return walk from Sullvan Rock, Albany Hwy to Mt Cooke Campsite

Access and parking: Park your car in the carpark at Sullivan Rock.
Approximate walk distance  13.9km.
Approximate time: 4 hours walking.
Degree of difficulty:   Advanced.
Track features:   Track follows old rail formations through an interesting creek system.
Option:   Continue for approx. 2km ascending Mt Cooke for spectacular views.

 

Overnight walks

Taking the next step to overnight treking can be very rewarding, but there are extra things you need to consider.  To help you pack the right gear, the Bibbulmun Track Foundation has put together a checklist of items you should include.  They also hire out gear if you don't have your own.

Footwear is important - kids should wear sturdy shoes or boots that are broken in and have a good tread.

Pack weight is also very important. The general rule is that the pack should weigh no more than 20 percent of the child's weight. For families with young kids, that means the parents will be shouldering alot of the load!

If you’re not confident to go it alone just yet, the Foundation holds a range of family events, including overnight walks, day walks and school holiday activities. Check out the Calendar of Events.

Each Bibbulmun Track campsite is well-equipped and features a timber shelter, picnic tables, bush toilet and water tank. The shelters are occupied on a first come, first served basis, so it is recommended that you always take a tent. 

 

Short overnight hikes, suitable for families with children aged 8 years and over.

Return walk from the Calamunnda Camel Farm (Paulls Valley Rd) to Hewett’s Hill Campsite

Access and parking: Park your car at the Camel Farm carpark.
Approximate walk distance:  7km.
Approximate time: 3 hours.
Degree of difficulty: Easy. 
Track features:  Walking through mixed jarrah and marri forest with pleasant views and rocky outcrops and boulders at the campsite.

Return walk from Perth Hills Discovery Centre to Ball Creek Campsite 

Access and parking: Park your car in the Parth Hills Discovery Centre carpark. 
Approximate walk distance:  6km.
Approximate Time: 3 hours.
Degree of difficulty: Easy.   
Track features:   An easy walk with interpretive signage about the forest along the way.

 

 

 

Intermediate overnight hikes for families with children aged 8 years and over 

Return walk from Sullivan Rock, Albany Highway to Mt Cooke Campsite 

Access and parking: Park your car at the carpark at Sullivan Rock. 

Approximate walk distance:  11km.
Approximate time: 5 hours walking.
Degree of difficulty: Intermediate. 
Track features:   Track follows old rail formations through an interesting creek system.
Option: Leave packs at the campsite and walk 2km to the summit of Mt Cooke for spectacular views.

 
 
Return walk from South Ledge Picnic area to Hewett’s Hill Campsite  

Access and parking: Park your car at the at South Ledge Picnic area carpark.
Approximate walk distance:  8km.
Approximate time: 3 hours walking.
Degree of difficulty:   Intermediate.  Some steep hills.
Track features:   Walking through mixed jarrah, wandoo and marri forest with pleasant views and rocky outcrops and boulders at the campsite.

 

Advanced overnight hike, suitable for families with children aged 12 and over.

 

Return walk from Sullivan Rock, Albany Hwy to Monadnocks Campsite   

Access and parking: Park your car at the carpark at Sullivan Rock.
Approximate walk distance:  14km.
Approximate time: 5 hours.
Degree of difficulty: Advanced. Rocky terrain with steep hills.
Track features: Track ascends steeply to Mt Vincent. Spectacular views to be had from this granite outcrop. The Track drops steeply before it heads up to Mt Cuthbert.
Easier version: From Monadnocks campsite head back to Sullivan Rock on Herold Road. This will alleviate going over the peaks of Mt Vincent and Mt Cuthbert.

 

Advanced two-night hike, suitable for families with older teenagers.

Three day (2 night) walk from Brookton Hwy to Sullivan Rock.
 
 
 This walk requires either a vehicle shuffle or drop offs and pick ups.  Can be walked in either direction.

Drop off point:  Brookton Hwy where Track crosses at the powerlines.
Pick up point:    Sullivan Rock, Albany Highway.
Approximate walk distance:  30km.
Approximate time: 3 days.
Number of nights:  2.
Campsites:   Canning and Monadnocks.
Degree of difficulty: Advanced. Mix of easier walking to rocky terrain and steep hills.

Track features: The Track skirts the lower rim of a large granite outcrop known as Abyssinia Rock on the first day, then crosses the Canning River through jarrah and sheoak forest with good views back over the river valley. The last day is challenging with walkers traversing Mt Cuthbert and Mt Vincent. However, the effort is rewarded with spectacular views.