Gunapin Ridge Walk (Walk #19a)
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|On this page:||
1) Walk map - Shows route and waypoint locations
3) 3D map view
7) Waypoint listing and grid references
|Click on map for large version.||
Rocky knoll in NW near Kent Road, Aug. 2004.
Click on photo for larger version.
Using this map.
|Additional Satellite Imagery|
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80 kms ESE of Perth.
18 field kms (95% off-track).
|Degree of difficulty :||
MEDIUM (What does this mean?)
|Amount of uphill walking :||
330m (cumulative ascent)
See Google Map for start point on road map.
(Use zoom ladder for detail. Select 'Hybrid' to add satellite imagery.)
Follow Brookton Highway from Albany Highway for 47 kms, then turn left into Yarra Road (first road on left after Christmas Tree well on left). After 12.4 kms up Yarra Road (gravel road; usually in good condition but watch for pot-holes) turn right (east) to follow Qualen Road (dirt road; usually fair condition but again watch for pot-holes and occasionally rutted surface). Bear left at the fork after about 1 km and reach the intersection with Darkin Road (dirt road) after 6 kms (with the NW corner of a strip of private farmland on the right, owned by Gunapin Ridge Pastoral Company). Continue a further 7 kms along Qualen Road to reach the intersection with Gunapin Ridge Road. Cross the intersection and park near the corner, a short distance along the eastward continuation of Qualen road (which here becomes a more minor dirt road).
|Escape route/s :||
In south, use Qualen Road, Gunapin Ridge and/or Kennel Roads; In north, get to nearest N-S road (Kent, Dog or Gunapin Ridge Road), then south to Qualen Road.
This walk lies entirely within the 44,000 ha Wandoo National Park. The Gunapin Ridge area offers mainly easy walking through picturesque, open wandoo woodlands, similar to the Upper Darkin and Qualen Road Walks, about 15 kms to the west and SW.
The terrain along this walk route is again mainly very gentle, with only a few modest climbs to hill-tops. There are some good views both west (toward Mount Dale) and east (toward York) from a large eastern outcrop, and also SE-ward from a smaller southern outcrop, toward an isolated strip of private farmland (Gunapin Ridge Pastoral Co.) which penetrates westward from the nearby wheatbelt into the Wandoo National Park. -But the main attraction is again the beauty of the woodlands combined with the prolific wildflowers in spring. Meney & Brown, 1985 have previously noted, "the character and form of the widely spaced virgin wandoo creates a most unique bush atmosphere which is a delight to any bushwalker".
Be prepared for some possible very short scratchy sections of dryandra scrub (mainly Pingle).
Although this area is more remote, the drive from the Brookton Highway turn-off along 25 kms of gravel and rougher dirt roads through forest to reach the start point of the walk is very worthwhile in itself, and not too challenging provided you drive cautiously to avoid occasional pot-holes and kangaroos crossing.
|Additional maps :||
WalkGPS walk map for OziExplorer users: A downloadable OziExplorer format MAP file (*.map) for this walk area is included on the Maps, Waypoints & Track Files page. The zipped folder also includes the associated 'base' topo map image file, plus other attached waypoints, tracks/routes, etc in OxiExplorer file formats.
WalkGPS reconnaissance history: Click here for a map of past WalkGPS test walks in the walk area, plus the final route. The final route was selected only after several visits to the area which aimed to achieve a walk that would be the most rewarding.
Other: Coolaring & Beverley 1:50,000 DEC Conservation Operations Graphic (COG) map series (current) Sheet 2233-4 & 2233-1;
or Coolaring 1:50,000 Sheet (WA Dept. of Lands & Surveys, 1980).
|Other background references :||
"Wandoo National Park - Park Guide" by DEC (undated pdf; 248KB).
Route notes :
From the Start point (near the corner of Qualen and Gunapin Ridge Roads), head east along Qualen Road for less than 100m (to 1) then turn right to head south and off-track across initially open ground and patches of heath. Cross a gentle ridge through open woodland and after almost 1 km veer SW to cross the valley floor. Cross Gunapin Ridge Road (at RD-1) and head WSW up a hillside, initially picking your way through a belt of heathland before entering wandoo woodland. At 4 the hillside steepens onto a small granite slab. Turn left to follow the outcrop southward for a short distance (to VU-RK)gaining a view to the SE, then continue uphill through a sheoak thicket to another small outcrop (at about 5). Then veer southward approximately along-slope close to the edge of the laterite-capped hilltop, picking a way through heathland in places. After about 400m, descend the hillside to reach Kennel Road (dirt road). Turn right (NW) to follow the road for almost 1 km, initially uphill and across a broad saddle . After the road starts downhill and when the heathland to the left gives way to woodland, (at about 7), veer WSW along slope through the woodland (via 8) to 9. Then head westward and downslope, soon following the NE side of a deep stream gully. Cross the gully to reach an area of large granite boulders (at ROX). Then descend NW to soon cross Qualen Road (at RD-3) and cross the narrow valley floor. Continue NW to climb a short, steep hillside and reach the local hill-top (at HILL). Then veer westward, gently downhill through sheoak thickets and across rocky ground to soon reach a granite slab (art SLAB) with views westward to distant Mt Dale (28 kms WSW). Explore a bit further around this rocky area by heading NE along slope to 14. Then head NW, initially gently downhill, crossing the sandy floor of a gentle side valley after about 500m. - 'York Road Poison' (Gastrolobium calycinum) shrubs display their abundant yellow-orange pea-flowers in this area in springtime. - Then cross a gentle spur ridge, bypassing thickets of parrot bush upslope. Continue NW-NNW along the slope (via15) soon entering a narrow belt of pleasant wandoo woodlands. After about 1 km you enter very open jarrah forest and cross the floor of another broad side valley. Then climb gently to reach a ridge (at 16). Head north along the ridge to reach a rocky knoll in wandoo woodland. Then continue northward along the ridge (via '18') and climb quite steeply for a short distance through a sheoak thicket to reach a small laterite-capped knoll (at '19'). -This is at approximately the halfway point on the walk. - Cross this flat heath-covered hilltop NE-ward (to '20') and descend northward down the escarpment to a small granite slab (at 'SLAB2'). Veer NNE from the slab, skirt a patch of shrubland to cross a small gully and continue downhill to cross a larger gully (at '22'). Veer eastward to climb the opposite slope and up a steeper rocky outcrop. Above the outcrop, the slope flattens. Head SSE along slope, partly through sheoak thickets (at '23'). After '24' veer southward (to'25'), picking a way along animal tracks through a thick patch of heath, and then head SE-ward (to '26') to descend to the valley floor again. Follow the stream course eastward through the pleasant, very open wandoo woodland of the valley floor. Cross Dog Road (at 'DOGRD2') and continue approximately along the stream course. Veer ESE at '28' to climb uphill and then along slope below a laterite-capped ridge. At '29', veer left (ENE) to climb onto the flat ridge top (at 'LAT') which gives a limited view to the SW. Then head NE to soon descend from the small hilltop and cross a shrub-covered valley. At 'GULLY' veer ENE and soon climb increasingly steeply uphill via '32' through woodland. (At this point the slope drops off to a deep stream gully about 100m to the north, possibly still hidden from sight. Another gully lies about 200m to the south.) Skirt the northern edge of the laterite-capped hilltop and at '33' head due north to cross the northern gully and climb steeply up a hillisde to a higher hilltop. (at '34'). Then veer NE. Within 50m meet a minor vehicle track (at 'TRK'). Continue NE on the track and soon reach a granite slab on the ridge (at 'VU-NE'), with a view across forest in the direction of the town of York and Mt Bakewell (30 kms NE). Then head initially southward (via '37 and '38' picking an easy way through patches of shrubland that cover parts of this outcrop area. Then veer SSE to follow the exposed areas of granite slab as much as possible, with only short sections of shrubland. (The granite slab which slopes to the SW is about 750m long from the northern view point to a gully in the south. There are some good views westward from the outcrop to Mt Dale and SW to the monadnocks area.) At '39' veer more southward and mainly downslope (via '40' and '41', to 'BLDRS'). The outcrop ends near a group of large boulders (at 'BLDRS') in a gully. Then climb the opposite slope of the gully (to '43') and head approx. SSW, mainly skirting patches of parrot bush on the ridge. Continue southward (via '44') initially through wandoo woodland. Then pick an easy way through a short patch of heathland on the west flank of the ridge and reach a small granite outcrop (at 'SML-RK'). Head due south and soon (near '46') enter an area of sheoaks around a gentle gully. Head SSW to initially follow the gully downslope for about 200m. Then veer southwards (via '47' and '48') down the hillside, avoiding denser shrubland to the east. Then head approx. SE (via '49') to reach Qualen Road near the corner with Gunapin Ridge Road ('GUNPRD') and close to the Start point.
Right click here and then "Save Target/Link As..." if you wish to download the waypoints and GPS 'track' as a GPX file in the standard format recognised by most devices and programs including Garmin and Magellan units and GPS Mapping Software. If you have a problem uploading the data, please feel free to contact me directly at WalkGPS rather than your users' forum!
The waypoints in the alternative listing below are given as UTM coordinates with datum to match the Walk Map. NOTE: If you wish to manually enter these into your GPS unit you must first set your unit to the correct Datum. Caution: An incorrect datum can result in an approximate 200m location error! (This is a very slow, error-prone method compared to using the above downloadable file and is not recommended.)
Route list :
Projection : UTM Datum : Australian Geodetic 1966 Zone : 50
Waypt name Easting Northing Comments
START 460298 6449264 On Qualen Rd, near corner with Gunapin Ridge Rd.
1 460379 6449255 On Qualen Rd.
2 460267 6448358 In open woodland.
RD-1 459671 6447816 On Gunapin Ridge Rd.
4 459329 6447681 On granite slab.
VU-RK 459335 6447561 On granite slab, with view to SE.
5 459240 6447522 On small granite outcrop near hilltop.
RD-2 458962 6447018 On Kennel Rd.
7 458464 6447818 On Kennel Rd.
8 458197 6447747 In wandoo woodland.
9 458077 6447645 In wandoo woodland.
ROX 457839 6447661 Large granite boulders.
RD-3 457682 6447745 Qualen Rd.
HILL 457485 6447910 On small hilltop.
SLAB 457244 6447903 On granite slab, views to west.
14 457338 6448018 On granite slab.
15 456547 6449128 In open wandoo woodland.
16 455857 6450537 In open jarrah forest.
ROX-2 455863 6450823 Granite boulders on rocky knoll.
18 455971 6450906 Near low ridge.
19 455982 6451287 On southern edge of small laterite-capped hill-top.
20 456122 6451441 On northern edge of small laterite-capped hill-top.
SLAB2 456123 6451543 On granite slab.
22 456362 6451931 Stream gully.
23 456654 6451900 In sheoak thicket above steeply WSW-sloping hillside.
24 456884 6451469 In woodland on WSW-sloping hillside.
25 456834 6451303
26 457127 6450999 On valley floor, near stream course.
DOGRD2 457948 6450779 Dog Rd.
28 458260 6450526 On valley floor, near stream course.
29 458768 6450432 On south slope of laterite-capped hilltop.
LAT 458898 6450482 On laterite-capped hilltop, in wandoo woodland.
GULLY 459409 6450886 Near deeply incised stream gully.
32 459682 6450976 On west-sloping ridge in wandoo woodland.
33 459822 6451084 On north edge of small laterite-capped hilltop.
34 459833 6451466 Near hilltop, in woodland.
TRK 459877 6451491 On old vehicle track.
VU-NE 459982 6451589 On granite outcrop, view to NE.
37 460024 6451492 On partly shrub-covered outcrop.
38 460011 6451441 On partly shrub-covered outcrop.
39 460133 6451098 On partly shrub-covered outcrop.
40 460089 6450996 On partly shrub-covered outcrop.
41 460114 6450894 On partly shrub-covered outcrop.
BLDRS 460080 6450836 Large granite boulders in gully.
43 460051 6450754 On edge of laterite capped hilltop.
44 459963 6450601 In wandoo woodland.
SML-RK 459900 6450296 On very small granite outcrop.
46 459888 6449991 In gentle gully.
47 459736 6449755
48 459705 6449596 On south-sloping hillside.
49 459903 6449279 In open forest, near valley floor.
GUNPRD 460221 6449242 Near corner of Qualen and Gunapin Ridge Roads.
END 460298 6449264 Back at Start point.
Additional Waypoints on map :
DRKNRD 453566 6446905 Intersection of Darkin and Qualen Roads (not on map area).
KENTRD 455676 6446994 Kent Rd meets Qualen Rd.
DOG-RD 458317 6448116 Dog Rd meets Qualen Rd.
KEN-RD 458114 6447995 Kennel Rd meets Qualen Rd.
GATE 459655 6446951 Farm gate at end of Gunapin Ridge Rd.
GULY-2 457542 6450180 Deeply incised gully in woodland west of Dog Rd.
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This page was last updated : 07 February, 2013
Site authored by David Osborne. Photographs and text are copyright © 2003-2013 David Osborne.