Camel Trail

4 h to 6 h

15.3 km
return

↑ 375 m
↓ -375 m

Moderate track
Starting from the Python Pool car park off Roeburn-Wittenoom Road, Millstream-Chichester National Park, this walk takes you to the summit of Mount Herbert and back via the Camel Trail. Linking the stunning Python Pool to the lookout at Mount Herbert, this historic trail follows part of an old route used by cameleers to lead their camels to reliable water sources. The Camel Trail winds up the rugged basalt and sandstone escarpment of the Chichester Ranges through rolling spinifex covered hills and large termite mounds, passing McKenzie Spring before heading to the summit of Mount Herbert. There are a couple of benches along the way that allow you to stop for a rest and take in the view of the surrounding landscape. Most of the walk is fairly straightforward, but there are a few unclear moments when the trail's camel-emblazoned markers are helpful in confirming that you've taken the right path. Even in the more difficult section up to Mount Herbert, the Camel Trail is surprisingly gentle and makes for a perfect introduction to walking in the Australian Outback. Although the trail is relatively easy, walkers should take care as there are some natural obstacles, uneven surfaces and rocky sections. If you're not going to walk out & back, it may be a good idea to start from Mount Herbert. If you're planning on returning to your starting spot on the other hand, begin from Python Pool. Let us begin by acknowledging the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present.
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Safer Bushwalks
Tips on staying safe on track
Before you start any bushwalk ensure you;
• Tell someone you trust where you are going and what to do if you are overdue
• Have adequate equipment, supplies, skills & knowledge for the whole journey
• Consider the impact of weather forecasts, park/track closures & fire dangers
• Can respond to emergencies & call for help at any point
• Are healthy and fit enough for this journey
If not, change plans and stay safe. It is okay to delay and ask people for help.
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Getting There
Transport options and directions
Start (-21.3326253,117.2400403)
Mode Car
DirectionsFrom North West Coastal Highway, 1
  • Turn on to Tom Price-Karratha Road, 129 then drive for 88.3 km
  • Turn left onto Roeburne - Wittenoom Road and drive for another 17.8 km
  • Keep right and drive for another 230 m
  • Turn slight right and drive for another 150 m
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Track Notes
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started
From the Python Pool car park (dirt) off Roebourne-Wittenoom Road, head southwest towards the tree group along the singular dirt track. About 90 metres in, veer left at the 3-way intersection and pass by the Python Pool to your right to continue along the Camel Trail.....
Turn map Directions & comments
Start.
There is a picnic table (about 45 m back from the start).
Python Pool Car Park (about 15 m back from the start).
Find the toilet at the start.
The starting point of an optional sidetrip. This little side trip takes you to the Python Pool, where you can enjoy the cool water amidst the impressive red rock walls. To start this optional side trip continue straight here. On returning from this side trip turn sharp left when you get back to this intersection. Details below.
After another 75 m veer left, to head along Camel Trail.
After another 780 m find the "Stone Culvert" (8 m on your left).
Stone Culvert
Stone Culvert

An information plaque bearing the symbol of the Australian Bicentenary provides information about an old stone culvert that the trail crosses and notes the construction quality. The road was benched into the hillside, and sumps were dug or blasted, and water diverted into culverts to prevent erosion.
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An information plaque bearing the symbol of the Australian Bicentenary provides information about an old stone culvert that the trail crosses and notes the construction quality. The road was benched into the hillside, and sumps were dug or blasted, and water diverted into culverts to prevent erosion.

After another 380 m come to the viewpoint (5 m on your left).
After another 4 km find the "McKenzie Spring" (15 m on your right).
McKenzie Spring
McKenzie Spring

This was once a watering hole for camel and bullock teams. There is a spacious rock pool at the bottom of the waterfall. The said waterfall is a small one but flows fiercely in the wet season. The spring is located near a pool surrounded by large trees upstream. This same watercourse runs all the way to Python Pool, bringing the summer rain that makes the falls flow. During the dry season, the water flow slows down to a mere trickle, making the water in the pool excessively algal and not particularly attractive for a swim.
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This was once a watering hole for camel and bullock teams. There is a spacious rock pool at the bottom of the waterfall. The said waterfall is a small one but flows fiercely in the wet season. The spring is located near a pool surrounded by large trees upstream. This same watercourse runs all the way to Python Pool, bringing the summer rain that makes the falls flow. During the dry season, the water flow slows down to a mere trickle, making the water in the pool excessively algal and not particularly attractive for a swim.

After another 1.9 km veer right.
After another 265 m come to the "Mount Herbert Lookout" (on your right).
After another 25 m find the "Mount Herbert" (on your left).
Mount Herbert
Mount Herbert

Mount Herbert is one of the highest points in the Chichester Range, providing expansive views over the range and plain below. The summit is marked with a short but wide cairn, a bench to enjoy the views from and a lovely series of wildflowers. From the summit, a rough trail runs off to the west and steeply descends to the Mount Herbert car park. Mount Herbert is not much of a mountain, and its summit can be conquered in mere minutes. Nevertheless, the view from the top is excellent and shows the way that the Roeburne-Wittenoom Road winds through the countryside as its heads towards Python Pool.
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Mount Herbert is one of the highest points in the Chichester Range, providing expansive views over the range and plain below. The summit is marked with a short but wide cairn, a bench to enjoy the views from and a lovely series of wildflowers. From the summit, a rough trail runs off to the west and steeply descends to the Mount Herbert car park. Mount Herbert is not much of a mountain, and its summit can be conquered in mere minutes. Nevertheless, the view from the top is excellent and shows the way that the Roeburne-Wittenoom Road winds through the countryside as its heads towards Python Pool.

After another 150 m pass the "Mount Herbert Trailhead" (10 m on your left).
Continue another 85 m to find the end. Then turn around here and retrace the main route for 7.7 km to get back to the start.

This little side trip takes you to the Python Pool, where you can enjoy the cool water amidst the impressive red rock walls.
Turn map Directions & comments
Start.
After another 105 m come to "Python Pool".
Python Pool
Python Pool

Python Pool is a beautiful seasonal freshwater pool surrounded by sheer red rock walls, and is a great place to enjoy whether you are stopping by to admire the scenery or staying a little longer for a swim. The day-use area is only a couple of hundred metres from the pool and has picnic tables, BBQ's and toilet facilities. The short trail to Python Pool takes you into the gorge, revealing the spectacular pool with the rugged red cliffs behind it. An ephemeral waterfall flows through the split in the middle of the rocks during the wet summer season. Although the waterhole is seasonal, it usually has water all year round. During the dry season when there is little water flow, Python Pool can suffer from algae blooms. During the wet season, you need to be careful of debris and strong currents after rain.
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Python Pool is a beautiful seasonal freshwater pool surrounded by sheer red rock walls, and is a great place to enjoy whether you are stopping by to admire the scenery or staying a little longer for a swim. The day-use area is only a couple of hundred metres from the pool and has picnic tables, BBQ's and toilet facilities. The short trail to Python Pool takes you into the gorge, revealing the spectacular pool with the rugged red cliffs behind it. An ephemeral waterfall flows through the split in the middle of the rocks during the wet summer season. Although the waterhole is seasonal, it usually has water all year round. During the dry season when there is little water flow, Python Pool can suffer from algae blooms. During the wet season, you need to be careful of debris and strong currents after rain.

The end.
Turn around and retrace your steps back the 105 m to the main route.
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Terrain
Know the Hills, grading & facilities

Camel Trail


Grading
Class 3/6
Moderate track
Length 15.3 km
Time 4 h to 6 h
Quality of track Formed track, with some branches and other obstacles (3/6)
Gradient Short steep hills (3/6)
Signage Clearly signposted (2/6)
Infrastructure Limited facilities, not all cliffs are fenced (3/6)
Experience Required Some bushwalking experience recommended (3/6)
Weather Storms may impact on navigation and safety (3/6)

Some facilities on route
Toilet: There is one 15 m from the start.


Order of key facilities on route
ItemFrom StartName & link to notes
Toilet
15 m[toilet]
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