Chichester National Park
Directions - Following the signs from Karratha take the turn-off for Roeburne-Wittenoom Rd and follow the signs all the way to either Mount Herbert or Pythons Pool. The car park at Python Pool has some facilities and there are information boards to mark the trails in the area.
The Hike - Rated as one of the Top Trails by TrailsWA, the Camel Trail was marked on the itinerary as one to look forward to and we were treated to yet another perfect day of weather (can you ever tire of 29C and no wind?). The issue for us like many travelers trying to do this trail is how to get from the finish back to the start without doing the trail again. Luckily the Mulla Mulla Campsite hosts were happy to come out with us and collect us from Python Pool and deposit us and the field equipment at the starting point at Mount Herbert.
With that all organised we just had to make our way to Python Pool where we would leave the Landcruiser and wait to be picked up by the generous campground hosts. Our bush Uber was waiting for us but before we left Python Pool we had to sneak down and get a few shots of it in the morning light and more importantly, empty (I'll talk more about this amazing place later in the post). With the desired shots in the bag we piled into the car and headed back up towards Mount Herbert for the start of this Top Trail. The vistas you experience along Roeburne-Wittenoom Rd are breathtaking but kind of spoil what you experience on the trail. Thanking our campground hosts for their kindness, we were left to our own devices and started the mostly downhill hike back to Python Pool.
Due to some issues with our field equipment Ben decided to bust out the trail as quickly as he could so I was left to explore at my own pace, which turned out to be quite slow for the first few kilometres. While the trail starts quite close to Mount Herbert, the hike up to the summit is a short side trail. Given I was only here once I followed the sign and began the short climb to the 359m peak. The summit is marked with a short but wide cairn, a bench to enjoy the views from and a lovely series of wildflowers including a healthy example of the Honey Hakea. Even better than the wildflowers are the views, taking in the great wilderness that seems to go on forever. I'll get back to the views later on but there is something about staring out into the limitless void of this ancient landscape that really makes you stop. If you've read some of my other posts from the Pilbara then you'll know I'm in love with panoramas for capturing this part of the world and this place was clearly made for this function.