Mitchell River National Park, WA, Australia
Mitchell River National Park is a national park in the Kimberley region of Western Australia, 2,140 kilometres (1,330 mi) northeast of Perth. The park adjoins the northern boundary of the Prince Regent Nature Reserve. The nearest towns are Derby which is 350 kilometres (217 mi) to the southwest and Wyndham which is 270 km (168 mi) to the southeast. Access to the park is achieved by 4WD only along the Mitchell Plateau Track from the Kalumburu Road. The two main features of the park are Mitchell Falls and Surveyors Pool.
The park is biologically significant and contains over 50 species of mammal, 220 birds and 86 amphibians and reptiles, including the Saltwater Crocodile, King Brown snake and Taipan. The park is part of the Prince Regent and Mitchell River Important Bird Area, identified as such by BirdLife International because of its importance for a range of bird species, especially those retricted to tropical savanna habitats.
From the Kalumburu Rd it’s a rough 87km, past lookouts and forests of livistona palms to the park’s dusty campground. Leave early if walking to Punamii-unpuu (Mitchell Falls; 8.6km return). The easy trail meanders through spinifex, woodlands and gorge country, dotted with Wandjina and Gwion Gwion rock-art sites, secluded waterholes, lizards, wallabies and brolga.
The falls are stunning, whether trickling in the Dry, or raging in the Wet (when only visible from the air). You can swim in the long pool above the falls, but swimming in the lower pools is strictly forbidden because of their cultural importance to the Wunambal people. Most people will complete the walk in three hours