Hike to a cascading waterfall, camp beneath ancient boabs and a star-filled sky, float away in pristine crystal clear water and discover aboriginal art in a picturesque gorge – enjoy all this and more at Manning Gorge.
Manning Gorge is found in the Kimberley about halfway along the Gibb River Road – a 660 km 4WD-only track formerly used as a stock route and now considered to be one of Australia’s greatest road trips
The campground is located only a few minutes’ walk from Manning Creek, making it the perfect place to stay along the Gibb River Road. While many stations have decided to remain closed for the 2020 season, Manning Gorge and Mt Barnett Roadhouse are still open, and with no interstate and international tourists, there’s never been a better time to visit and enjoy having this place to yourself!
The hike from Manning Creek to the waterfall is about 6 km return and takes about 1-1.5 hours each way. The walk starts on the other side of the creek; you’ll need to swim or wade across, and to keep your gear dry, use the tinnie (or blue barrels) to float it across. From there, follow the trail of arrows, ribbons and plastic tags to get to the gorge.
While the first half of the walk is fairly flat and easy going, there are a few dry creeks to climb in and out of near the end of the track, but you’ll soon emerge at the beautiful gorge where you can jump in for a refreshing swim to cool down.
And make sure to keep an eye out for aboriginal art (Gwion Gwion/Bradshaw) on the gorge walls.
The best time to hike to the falls is in the early morning (it’s recommended that you leave the campground no later than 2pm to start your walk, or 12pm in hot weather).
Photos by @alex.vp.photography, @darwin_style, @we_four_explore, @alex.vp.photography, @the_mieluks, @darwin_style & @alex.vp.photography
Research & words by @alex.vp.photography
Perth Western Australia Travel Photo