Bibbulmun Track

Dale Road to Beraking

Bibbulmun Track

Directions - Take Brookton Hwy east from Armadale until you reach the turnoff for Ashendon Rd. Follow Ashendon Rd for 3-4km before making a right turn on Dale Rd. Dale Rd takes you all the way to the summit of Mt Dale but the Bibbulmun Track crosses at Omeo Rd, where there is an area to park your car. 

 

The Hike - After completing a previous section of the Bibbulmun Track in July using Mt Dale as a starting point, I was keen to come back out and head north this time. An early start beckoned for the hour long trip to the base of Mt Dale off Brookton Hwy and it looked like it was going to be a nice sunny day. Instead of starting at the top of Mt Dale like I did before, I parked on Omeo Rd where the Bibbulmun Track crosses Dale Rd. The destination today was the Beraking campsite, about 10km from Omeo Rd and through some fantastic sections of bushland.

The hike from the starting point (476m ASL) is pretty much all downhill from Omeo Rd so the trip to Beraking (or #bearking as someone had marked on the hut sign) is fairly easy on the legs. This was a welcome start to the hike as I had visited Jacobs Ladder for the first time ever on Thursday and my calf muscles were still feeling a little tender. Leaving my half orange car (wet gravel roads made for some fun rally driving) I headed north towards the familiar yellow Wagyl and the bushfire affected forest on the slopes of Mt Dale. Scenes of pink, black and green were prevalent for the first couple of kilometres and with the sun shining through it made for some amazing photo opportunities. Eventually the colours changed back to the familiar greens of a healthy Jarrah forest as I turned east and began the first of many mini descents. Not far down the track I noticed the skies behind me darkening quickly and with the sun still shining bright from the east, the contrast was spectacular. I snapped a few quick photos and it wasn't long before I could feel spots of rain falling. Putting away the camera into a waterproof bag (this would be a regular occurrence), I grabbed out my rain jacket and prepared for the downpour. Just as my luck would have it, as the rain starting falling I passed through a thicket of bright yellow wildflowers.

 

With my camera safely tucked away and the rain getting heavier I made a note to remember this spot for the return trip. Then as soon as I exited the alley of yellow, the rain stopped and it was bright blue skies to the west again. I stopped in an open space overlooking the valley to the north and packed away my rain gear/unpacked my camera. I was happy to have clear skies for this section as the trail deviated to the south a little bit, giving a great view back to Mt Dale. The excursion south doesn't last long and the trail makes its second significant turn, this time to the north. At the turn there are great views east into the valley and with the landscape now covered in a fresh coat of moisture, it was a pretty sight. From here there is another little descent down a 4x4 track that would require a serious machine to negotiate and at the bottom is a raging creek crossing. Luckily there was a small piece of wood over the creek so I could cross the torrent without getting my legs wet (see gallery at the bottom of the page). There is a crossroads here right in front of the old concrete water tank and the trail darts straight, just to the right of the tank and into some thick Karri Hazel.