Overview : The jagged peaks of the Stirling Range stretch for 65km from east to west. The brooding beauty of the mountain landscape, its stunning... more »
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The jagged peaks of the Stirling Range stretch for 65km from east to west. The brooding beauty of the mountain landscape, its stunning... more » and unique wildflowers and the challenge of climbing Bluff Knoll have long drawn bushwalkers and climbers to the Stirling Range National Park.
The number and beauty of the wildflowers here is staggering. The park is one of the world’s most important areas for flora, with 1500 species (many of which grow nowhere else) packed within its boundaries. More plant species occur in the Stirling Range than in the entire British Isles, and 87 plant species found in the Stirling Range occur nowhere else on earth. This tally includes the famous mountain bells of the genus Darwinia. Needless to say, spring wildflower viewing is incredible. less «
The park is about 100km north-east of Albany via Chester Pass Road, just over one hour from Albany. Park entry costs:
$11 per vehicle ... more »(up to eight legally seated people).
$5 per motor cycle and concession cardholders.
$5 per coach passenger.
An ideal time to visit is late spring and early summer (October to December), when days are beginning to warm up and the wildflowers are at their best. Winter, between June and August, is cold and wet, and visitors should come prepared. Even in spring the weather can be unpredictable, particularly higher up in the range. Sudden cold changes cause the temperature to drop, and rain or hail to set in. All visitors are strongly advised not to enter the bush or use footpaths on days of extreme fire danger.
The range is one of few places in WA where snow occasionally falls. Snow probably falls on the highest peaks several times each year. On most occasions, it is only a light dusting or the snow melts on impact. However, falls above five centimetres have been reported on Bluff Knoll. Snow may occur at any time in winter and sometimes in spring.
WARNING: Walking is not recommended in wet or windy conditions or in extreme heat.
There is a camping area within the park at Moingup Springs. Private campgrounds and caravan parks are located on the park’s northern boundary as well as near Porongurup National Park.
Two Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPaW) rangers, one of whom resides in the park, are located at the turn-off to Bluff Knoll. The Park Headquarters is located at Moingup Springs on Chester Pass Road. DPaW’s South Coast Regional Office is at 120 Albany Highway, Albany, phone(08) 9842 4500.
• Carry plenty of drinking water – two to three litres per person for half-day to full-day walks.
• Wear sun protection, boots or sturdy footwear, and clothing that is weatherproof and scratchproof.
• Be prepared for sudden changes in the weather.
• Sloping, rough and uneven surfaces exist throughout the park. Take extra care near rock edges as they can crumble without warning or be very slippery.
• Protect habitat and wildlife by leaving rocks and plants
undisturbed. Do not bring pets into the park.
• No camping or cooking fires are allowed in the park.
• Bins are not provided so please take your rubbish out with you, including food scraps and toilet paper. Make sure toilet waste is buried to 15 centimetres deep.
• Fox baits are spread throughout the park four times a year by hand and aircraft drop. These poisonous baits are small chunks of dried meat or pink sausages that should not be handled.
Phytophthora dieback is a major problem in the Stirling Range. Caused by a microscopic water mould that dwells in the soil, this plant pathogen kills plants by rotting their roots.You can help to prevent the further spread of dieback:
• Stay on designated tracks and trails.
• Avoid walking in wet soil conditions.
• Abide by management signs and do not enter restricted areas.
• Clean soil from footwear at the start and finish of any walks you do in natural areas.
• For regular bushwalkers, a small spray bottle of 100 per cent methylated spirits is ideal for cleaning footwear.
• Clean vehicle tyres before entering national parks. less «
Stop here for information about the park and to pay your vehicle entry fees. Park entry costs:
$11 per vehicle (up to eight legally seated people).
$5 per motor cycle and concession cardholders.
$5 per coach passenger.
You can drive to a viewing platform at Bluff Knoll to view the mountain. You will find boardwalks, toilets and interpretive information, and can take in views of Bluff Knoll as well as sweeping vistas to the west. Discover ‘many eyes’ and ‘many faces’ on the craggy cliffs of Bluff Knoll, a place of great significance to the traditional Aboriginal ... Morecustodians of the range, the Nyoongar people.
The jagged peaks of the Stirling Range National Park stretch for 65km from east to west. The rocks of the range were once sands and silts deposited in the delta of a river flowing into a shallow sea. Deposited over many millions of years, these layers of sediment became so thick and heavy that, in combination with unimaginable forces stretching the Earth’s crust in the area, they caused the crust in the area to sink. As the surface subsided, still more sediment was deposited in the depression which was left. The final thickness of sediment is believed to be more than 1.6km! As the sediment built up, so did the pressure on the layers below. The water was forced out of these layers, which solidified to become rocks known as sandstones and shales.
Buried deep in the Earth’s crust, the rocks which form today’s Stirling Range were gradually exposed over millions of years as the surrounding rocks were worn away by the forces of weathering (chemical breakdown) and erosion (physical removal of material by water, wind and gravity). It was during this process that the current form of the range was sculpted.Less
Bluff Knoll, at 1,095m above sea level, is the highest peak in the south-west. The main face of the Bluff forms one of the most impressive cliffs in the Australian mainland. It takes three to four hours to complete the 6km return walk. Walking is not recommended in wet or windy conditions or in extreme heat.
Bluff Knoll was called Pualaar Miial (... More'great many faced hill') by the local Aboriginal people. This was because the rocks on the Bluff were shaped like faces. The peak is often covered with mists, which curl around the mountain tops and float into the gullies. These constantly changing mists were believed to be the only visible form of a spirit called Noatch (meaning dead body or corpse), who had an evil reputation.
The Stirling Range is renowned for its unusual, and sometimes spectacular, cloud formations. Park visitors may notice two types of unusual cloud formations about the peaks, often when the rest of the sky is clear. A shallow, low-level stratified cloud that drapes over the higher peaks is a familiar sight. Another type of shallow cloud layer may leave the higher peaks exposed, which is a unique sight in WA.Less
This is a great place to enjoy a picnic, with a gas barbecue, toilet, picnic tables, walkers/hikers information shelter and registration book provided for the use of park visitors.
The walk to Mt Trio is a medium 3.5km, 2 hour return walk. Walking is not recommended in wet or windy conditions or in extreme heat.
Mt Trio (Warrungup) is so named because it has three separate peaks linked together by a plateau. The first third of the path is steep but the remainder is easy. The path is initially a boardwalk and continues up the plateau and on to the summit, 856m above sea level. From the summit there are sweeping views of Toolbrunup and other peaks to the... More south-west.
During spring, the mountain bells (a group of darwinias) are abundant on this walk. They are perhaps the most famous of the wildflowers found in the Stirling Range. Each bell appears to be a single flower, but is actually a cluster of small flowers enclosed by colourful petal-like leaves, referred to as bracts.
The common mountain bell (Darwinia lejostyla) is one of the mountain bells that can be seen on the Mt Trio walk. Despite its name, it is not at all common. It is considered rare because of its restricted distribution but is not currently regarded as threatened. There are two forms: a mountain form, with bright pink bells; and a valley form, with smaller paler pink bells.Less
The 4km, 3-4 hour return walk up cone-shaped Toolbrunup Peak is more challenging than scaling Bluff Knoll, with some rock scrambling towards the top, but the views are worth the effort. The peak stands 1052m above sea level. This walk is not recommended in wet or windy conditions.
Reasonably soon after you pass through a damp, shaded moss and... More fern field near the top, a sign warns walkers to proceed with caution. From this point, you need to clamber over rocks and boulders. Look for the yellow-capped markers placed in the rocks to ensure you are following the correct route.
Once on the summit, pick out the distinctive shapes of Bluff Knoll and the other peaks. To the north are salt lakes and to the south lies the Porongurup Range. Take care to follow the markers on your return from the summit.Less
Moingup Springs is the only campground in Stirling Range National Park. The creekline here was once an Aboriginal campsite. Enjoy the evening and early morning birdlife at this campground. Take your own drinking water, and be prepared for sudden weather changes.
The campground has gas barbecues, toilets and picnic tables. There is no available... More power. Bookings do not apply. Moingup Springs operates on a first come, first served basis. Please contact the Ranger's Office on (08) 9827 9230 during peak holiday season for availability. Camping fees: Adults $7/night; Concession card holders $5/night; Children (under 16) $2/night. Vehicle entry fees apply.Less
Mount Hassell, standing about 827m above sea level, is a popular 3km, 2-3 hour return walk of medium difficulty. The walk finishes with a short steep scramble over a dome of rock that forms the summit. There are excellent views over nearby Toolbrunup Peak. In spring the wildflowers make a striking show. Walking is not recommended in wet or windy... More conditions or in extreme heat.Less
Talyuberlup Peak is a medium 2.6km, 2-3 hour return walk. You’ll cross increasingly steep terrain through varied vegetation to a rocky crag at the summit where you can take in extensive views of the Stirling and Porongurup ranges. The summit is 783m above sea level. Some scrambling over ledges is required. Walking is not recommended in wet or... More windy conditions or in extreme heat.
The Stirling Range was first recorded by Matthew Flinders in 1802. In 1831 Surgeon Alexander Collie recorded the Aboriginal name of the range, ‘Koi Kyeunu-ruff’, which was provided to him by his Aboriginal guide Mokare. Surveyor-General John Septimus Roe travelled to Perth with Governor Sir James Stirling in 1835, and glimpsed ‘some remarkable and elevated peaks’. Roe called them the Stirling Range. The area was declared a national park in 1913, at a time where the dominant culture was towards clearing the bush and converting it to farmland. It was the third park to be established in Western Australia.Less
Take a short and somewhat steep walk to the top of a small knoll to enjoy impressive views of surrounding peaks and the Porongurup Range to the south.
You can stop here and enjoy a picnic on the table provided, but the 7km, 3-4 hour return walk should only be attempted by the very fit. It is hard and there is no path for final 1km to the summit. This trail starts in tall wandoo woodland and leads through open country and thick bush to provide excellent views. The track is quite overgrown in... More places. Before you leave, please tell someone you are going and when you plan to return. Walking is not recommended in wet or windy conditions or in extreme heat.
Mt Magog is 856m above sea level.Less
This is a great place to stop and enjoy expansive views looking east across the Stirling Range National Park.