Yanchep National park

Yesterday I went to Yanchep National park. I was intrigued when I heard of a ‘Ghost house trail’ and I wanted to explore (yes, the child within is still alive and curious as ever…). When I arrived at the visitor center and I asked which way to go for the trail, I was immediately asked to fill out a form in case they needed to find me. ‘Jeez’ I thought, ‘yet another form, just to take a hike around’… People sure love their forms, in fact on Friday I was offered a free 45-min hearing test, but upon seeing that they emailed me 4 forms of 2 – 3 pages each, I just canceled the appointment… better to lose my hearing than my sanity. Anyway, I filled out only my name and my phone number, and the lady, seeing how unwilling I was to fill out the rest of the form, had to fill it out for me. She was not happy.

I got on the trail away from humans and their forms. Right off the bat nature was beautiful and wild. I didn’t encounter anyone else almost throughout the whole hike; I guess most others are smarter than me to avoid hiking around under a 36C heat.

It was immersive, and most importantly, peaceful. Even though you will encounter the typical Western Australian nature, with the Kookaburras laughing at you while you’re getting pillaged by endless swarms of flies, there was something different to that park; a bit more untouched and with a bit more varied vegetation.

You could see the typical plants of WA (see the picture of a Banksia cone, a plant that is evolved to use fire to germinate, sort of nature’s sperm popcorn), eucalyptus trees shedding their bark as if they’re moose shedding the velvet from their antlers, koalas (only in fenced areas), kangaroos scaring the life out of you when the dash away. It was also interesting to see a lot of termite mounds and some wild bees. I wonder how much more stuff I could have seen if I went at a time that all living things weren’t hiding away from the heat (smarter than me as well).

There was a large lake, but a part of it had dried out, replaced by this coastal vegetation that was fun to walk on.

After some time I reached the ‘Ghost house’ which was simply the debris of a house arch. I sat down to rest for a while and realized I hadn’t eaten anything that whole day, and it was already noon. Thankfully I searched my backpack and found 2 cookies that were left from last Thursday’s blood donation, so they were a welcome surprise. Searched the ruins a bit more, but they were just that… ruins.

Humans build and nature reclaims. Still though, ruins are the remnants of older times, reminding us how many things were built, destroyed, recycled, or lost so that we can enjoy the things we enjoy today. I bet the ‘Chouchoute gang’ also had the same thoughts, that’s why they wanted to leave their mark on their ruins.

I started making my way back to the starting point.

Now after spending 4 hours on the trail with only 2 cookies, I was truly famished. I headed to Yanchep inn, and I knew exactly what to order in a fancy place like this. A burger. These remote places that tend to gather fewer people than restaurants in the city, and are close to a natural park, usually have fantastic burgers. And indeed, I saw the menu and they sure had some interesting options. Now, out of them, it might not be too difficult to guess which one I went for…

Yes, it was worth it, and kept me full until the next morning.

There were some limestone caves, but they were reserved only for guided tours! I haven’t finished with Yanchep though; there were other trails that I didn’t have time to explore on that day, and a treetop adventure, so I’m sure to return, but this time between Autumn to Spring.