Last week I wrote about walking uptown Castle Rock and the Granite Skywalk in Porongurup National Park, this post is about the Nancy Peak Circuit also in the Porongurups.
The Porongurup National Park is 359km (or 4 hours) south of Perth near Mt Barker. This 5.5 Km walk starts at the Tree-in-the-Rock car parking area which can be accessed via Bolganup Road which is a turn off from the main Porongurup Road. Until the opening of the Granite Skywalk this used to be the main entrance to the park and where the visitors came. When we went the other week the car park was deserted and we only saw one other walker on the trail. At the information area take the path for the Nancy Peak Circuit and walk on past the Tree In The Rock through the Karri Forest.
The forest was almost like a temperate rainforest – moist with a thick understory that supports mosses ferns and a huge number of fungi. It is not something you typically associate with Western Australia. In fact it felt more like Tasmania once it started raining! After about an hour you emerge from the forest onto granite ridge which connects to Nancy Peak and Morgans Peak.Once you climb up to the peaks they afford fantastic views to the Stirling Ranges in the north and Southern Ocean to the south. Of course this depends upon the weather, and as luck would have when we came out of the forest we were greeted by white out conditions caused by low lying cloud and could only see about 5m in front of us. As we slowly made our way up to Nancy Peak the clouds did part and grant us glimpses of the views.
Carrying along the ridge from Nancy Peak across the granite outcrops, then descend into a steep valley between Nancy Peak and Devils Slide. Eventually you’ll hit a fire road that takes you back through the karri forest and on to the car park. This will take about 4 hours depending on the weather. It rained pretty hard on and off when we did the walk and this made sections of the granite incredibly slippery – it was like walking on ice – and this slowed us down a lot. The highlight of the walk was watching two wedge tailed eagles ride the thermals below us as we stood on the summit.