The deep gorges and high peaks of Karijini National Park are some of the oldest rock formations exposed on the Australian continent. The evolution of the Karijini landscapes that we see today started over 2500 million years ago.

The types of rock that can be seen especially well in the gorges are the banded iron formations, dolomite (similar to limestone with a grey or pale brown colour) and Mount McRae shale (very soft purple or pink rock). Karijini is home to many spectacular gorges which visitors can explore.

Dales Gorge

At Dales Gorge you can experience three major highlights of Karijini National Park - Fortescue Falls, Circular Pool and Fern Pool. From Dales Gorge, Fortescue Falls is glorious to behold and is the park’s only permanent waterfall. Enjoy a swim in the refreshing waters and lay on a rock warming in the sun. Fern Pool, just 300m from Fortescue Falls, is one of the most picturesque settings in the park. Or, if so inclined, enjoy the three-hour return walk to the breathtaking Circular Pool.

Trails & Walks

Gorge Rim 2km – 1.5 hours return

Fortescue Falls 800m – 1 hour return

Fern Pool 300m from Fortescue Falls

Circular Pool 800m – 2 hours return

Dales Gorge 2km – 3 hours return

Learn more about Dales Gorge.

Hamersley Gorge

One of the most remote gorges in Karijini. Hamersley Gorge has ancient rock formations which show a kaleidoscope of unique colours and textures, making it a popular destination for keen photographers. It is also a popular swimming spot as it’s wider than other gorges in the park. Families often visit here as there is easy access to the Hamersley Waterfall via stairs.

Trails & Walks

Hamersley Waterfall 400m – 1 hour return

Learn more about Hamersley Gorge.

Hancock Gorge

Best appreciated with a local guide. The exhilarating descent into Hancock Gorge has been described as a ‘journey to the centre of the earth’. After climbing down a ladder, you wander further into the gorge which then narrows into a huge chamber with small rock pools and marbled walls. Caution must be taken when entering Hancock Gorge via the ladder.

Once inside, visitors can choose to venture further where the gorge dramatically narrows to a Class 5 trail section. To continue, hikers are required to perform what is called a “spider walk”, where you stretch your arms and legs out to straddle the gaps and move along the walls.

Trails & Walks

Hancock Gorge 400m – 80 minutes return (trail ends at Kermit's Pool)

Kalamina Gorge 3km – 3 hours return

Learn more about Hancock Gorge.

Joffre Falls

Especially impressive after the rain. From the lookout, take in the full beauty of the stunning Joffre Gorge and stand in awe at its scale. The spectacular curved waterfall creates the shape of a natural amphitheater. For some, it’s a life affirming experience to witness this sight: water cascades down the cliff face over natural steps to a dark, enticing pool. As the gorge narrows, the rushing white waters tumble over sensuously, smooth rock. Most of the Joffre Falls trail is class 4 (moderately difficult) with the last 150m descending into the gorge class 5 (difficult, a high level of fitness is required).

Trails & Walks

Joffre Lookout 100m – 10 minutes return

Joffre Falls 3km – 2 hours return

Learn more about Joffre Falls.

Kalamina Gorge

An easily accessible slice of paradise. It is a short walk – but down a steep track – to the base of the gorge. There you will discover a small permanent pool, complete with waterfall and draping ferns. Follow the trail downstream, past rock pools and beautiful rock walls, into the main gorge. With its delightful trail and picnicking area, Kalamina Gorge is a great introduction to the gorge system. Access to the car park is preferable in a 4WD vehicle.

Trails & Walks

Kalamina Gorge 3km – 3 hours return

Learn more about Kalamina Gorge.

Knox Gorge

For a light show like no other. A natural geological phenomenon, millions and millions of years in the making, Knox Gorge is a deeply fascinating chasm. Some say, to look down into this gorge is to peer into one’s soul. Try visiting the lookout late in the afternoon, or early in the morning, when the slanting sun rays enhance this spectacular panorama.

Trails & Walks

Knox Lookout 300m – 15 minutes return

Knox Gorge 2km – 3 hours return

Learn more about Knox Gorge.

Mount Bruce

Known by local Aboriginal people as Punurrunha. The second highest mountain in Western Australia, it offers one of the state’s most stunning panoramic views. The 1,235m peak overlooks the Marandoo Mine Site, providing a unique glimpse into the WA resource industry. The vigorous climb – approximately a 6 hour return trip – is recommended to be undertaken early morning. Ensure you carry plenty of water.

Trails & Walks

Marandoo View 500m – 30 minutes return

Honey Hakea Track 4.6km – 3 hours return

Mount Bruce Summit 9km – 6 hours return

Learn more about Mt Bruce.

Weano Gorge

Discover Oxer Lookout and Handrail Pool from Weano Gorge. Oxer Lookout is a great starting point for seeing the gorges in one sweeping view. It features an astounding view over the Weano Gorge. For the fit and daring climber, try climbing over boulders. Handrail Pool is great for swimming, with a handrail installed to help negotiate the climb.

Trails & Walks

Handrail Pool, Weano Gorge 150m – 30 minutes return

Oxer and Junction Pool lookouts 800m – 30 minutes return

Upper Weano 1km - 45 minutes return

Lower Weano 1km - 1 hour return

Learn more about Weano Gorge.