Hiking Mt Bruce, Western Australia is easily one of the best hikes I have done in my home state. Mount Bruce (Aboriginal name: Punurrunha) is located within Karijini National Park in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. At 1,234 metres above sea level, it is WA’s second highest peak falling short by 15m to Mount Meharry which is also located in Karijini.
Our day began as we left Dales campground on a crisp morning before sunrise to start the drive to Mt Bruce.
There are a few options to hike Mt Bruce. We did the full summit trail which is recommended for experienced hikers.
Starting in the car park of Mt Bruce (toilet facilities available) we had a short walk to the lookout at Rio Tinto’s Marandoo mine site to warm us up. The site is an open iron ore pit with huge trains slowly rumbling in.
We continued on and arriving on the other side of the hill had this pretty amazing view of what we actually have to climb. We were starting to feel the warmth of the sun and pilbara weather.
The path ends part way up the hill as we make our way into the class 5 section of rocks and the climbing begins! There are plenty of markers along the way so you shouldn’t get lost.
Looking back to check out the view. I love the contrast of the red dirt path and the prickly spinifex.
As we get higher the wind becomes stronger. We were walking along a ridge when a big gust of wind came and almost blew us off. Grabbing my sisters hand we walked along together in fits of laughter. Being mid June the wildflowers had started to bloom and were dotted along the trail.
The view was already looking pretty special and I couldn’t wait to get to the summit. From here you can see the mine site, train line, the ridge where we almost got blown off and the trek so far.
The amount of different scenery you pass through really surprised me too. Rock tiles, trees, shrubs, wildflowers and chains! Seeing the chain was a bit daunting but for someone that isn’t afraid of heights it wasn’t actually that bad.
Some more climbing and this time you can really see how high up you’re getting.
We arrived to a very windy summit and the beautiful panoramic views of the Hamersley range.
There was no one else around, we had beaten all the other hikers. Ahhh.
On the way down we did pass a lot of people (exhausted and sweaty people) making their way up. I definitely think arriving just as the sun is coming up was a good idea.
Mt Bruce quickly became one of my favourite hikes in Western Australia.
Grade: Class 2
Time: Allow 30 minutes return
Honey Hakea Track
Grade: Class 3
Time: Allow 3 hours return
Mt Bruce Summit
Grade: Class 5
Time: Allow up to 6 hours return (we took roughly 3.5- 4hrs with time to chill at the summit)
What to take:
- Min 2 litres of water
- Hiking boots or good walking shoes
- Snacks and/or lunch
- Windproof jacket
- First aid kit
- Head torch/ flash light for early morning
- Bag for rubbish
This walk is not for the faint- hearted. Some parts of the walk are class 5 and require climbing rocks and a high level of fitness and experience.
Karijini National Parks climate can be best described as tropical-semi desert. Temperatures in summer are often 40 degrees Celsius. Make sure you are prepared for the heat.
You can get to the carpark by two-wheel drive and larger vehicles.
Have fun hiking!