4wd Image courtesy of Karl Baron via flickr

Not everyone wants to tackle white-knuckle 4WD tracks. You might be a beginner, looking for a subdued track to take the family on or something easy to break in your new four wheel drive. That’s why we put together this list of six easy 4WD tracks near Perth that are a good mix of fun and adventure.

Perth boasts a wide range of terrain to choose from in tracks that can be completed in a day. Some have nearby camping facilities if you want to extend your trip over the weekend and take on a few other 4x4 tracks. The best part is you don’t need to travel half-way across WA to find simple 4WD tracks because there are plenty to choose from!



1. Waroona Dam - a Variety of Easy Tracks

Waroona Dam Image courtesy of Shire of Waroona

Distance from Perth: 119 km
Highlights: Views over the lake, tracks offering varying degrees of difficulty
Track Length: 10-30 km loop tracks

While most refer to it as Waroona Dam, its other name is Lake Navarino. The tracks run around the dam with Scarp Road as the boundary to several of the 4WD tracks. The tracks vary in difficulty during the year. If you want to avoid the bog holes, mud runs and difficult hill climbs, it’s best to keep things simple and visit when it’s dry.

The far east side has the easier tracks with only a few side angles to manoeuvre through. If you are a novice, it may be best to take someone with you who has some experience to spot any ruts or angles you should avoid.

The tracks on the western side are the most difficult, requiring lockers on your vehicle to get through it.

Other activities at Waroona
The lake is perfect for water skiing behind a boat or canoeing during the warmer months. Enjoy a day in the sun or stay a while setting up camp lakeside or in the local caravan park.

It’s probably best you don’t take notes from the 4WD driver in this video as he tried to navigate over the rocks near Waroona Dam.

 

2. Wilbinga - Sand Tracks

Wilbinga Image courtesy of dunk72 via Wikimedia Commons

Distance from Perth: 70 km
Highlights: Bush and dunes down to the beach
Track Length: N/A

One of Perth’s most well-known and popular four wheel drive tracks, Wilbinga is a terrific mix of bush, sand and beach driving. Access is from Wilbinga Road located off Indian Ocean Drive after Military Drive in the Shire of Gingin.

If it’s sand dune driving you are hoping to get a little practice in, there are three main dune areas. Stick to the small, easy ones and if you have your confidence try one of the extremely steep dunes. While the tracks are mainly sand, there are a few rocky sections.

Wilbinga is a conservation park close enough to Perth that you can take a day trip to the beach or stay awhile and camp. Stay on the tracks, off vegetation and virgin bushland. Take the rods and try your luck at beach fishing. They allow vehicle access on the beach so enjoy a beach run.

Within the park are four shacks that have been recreational fishing shacks for over 50 years old. Built by the original pastoral managers, the shacks are maintained by their families, volunteers and several 4WD clubs.

Staying Safe on Sand Dune 4x4 Tracks
When driving your 4x4 in Wilbinga Sand Bowl (and any other sand dunes) it’s advisable to attach a sand flag to your vehicle so other drivers know you are approaching.

If you are taking on a sand or beach track that requires you to let your tyres down, remember to take a deflator, air compressor and recovery gear.

 

3. Mundaring Weir - Perth Hills

Mundaring Weir Image courtesy of JarrahTree via Wikimedia Commons

Distance from Perth: 45 km
Highlights: The terrain varies along the track from sand and mud to gravel, rocks, inclines and declines
Track Length: 10-30 km

The Perth Hills is an obvious location for easy 4x4 tracks. There are several tracks to choose from but Mundaring Weir is a favourite because of its picturesque surrounds. Set in 130,000 of state forest, there are gravel roads and easy hill climbs.

There’s something for everyone to discover at the weir once you have finished your four wheel driving. Marvel at the engineering achievement and learn about its history using the interpretive information around the dam. The No. 1 Pump Station is open in the afternoon on weekends and public holidays.

Enjoy a packed lunch at the Mundaring Weir Gardens, adjacent to the northern side of the dam wall. There is an abundance of local Western Australian flora and fauna to explore. The facilities here include toilets, water, picnic shelters, free gas BBQs, and a children’s play area.

Don’t Take the Wrong Track
Just don’t get the Mundaring Weir Track mixed up with the Mundaring Powerline Track! That’s definitely not one of Perth’s starter 4x4 tracks. You will need far more experience under your 4WD belt to tackle that one.

 

4. White Hills Beach - Soft Sand

White Hills Beach Image courtesy of Visit Mandurah

Distance from Perth: 100 km
Highlights: Beach driving, fish and snorkelling
Track Length: N/A

Wilbinga is ideal for those living in the northern suburbs but it may be a little too far for southern siders. Enter White Hills Beach, just south of Mandurah. White Hills, Preston Beach and Tims Thicket are the closest beaches south of Perth that allow vehicle access.

White Hills has soft sand, ideal for practising speed control. Just make sure you let your tyres down so you don’t damage the track and get bogged. White Hills is around 2km long north to Seal Rock, a limestone reef outcrop. Beach camping is allowed but not in the dunes. You can continue your drive south to Preston Beach around 22 km away.

 

5. Moore River National Park Track

Moore River Image courtesy of Michael_Spencer via Wikimedia Commons

Distance from Perth: 95 km
Highlights: River crossing
Track Length: 30 km

Many people who grew up in Perth holidayed or at least day tripped to Moore River. The sleepy little town of Guilderton has excellent 4WD spots you can explore.

The river crossing is simple if the river bed sand is hard but it can be soft in parts. The only way to know is to send someone across to scout it out. There is no shortage for sand practice and a few hill climbs.

Explore the 17,500 hectare Moore River National Park to discover the wildflowers during spring, tall eucalypt trees and banksias. There is no camping allowed in the park but Guilderton has a caravan park an hour’s drive away. If you want to do some beach driving, you can gain access north of the river mouth.

To explore the area further afield you can drive through bush and sand tracks to get to Sea Bird and Ledge Point.

 

6. Avon Valley National Park

Avon Valley Image courtesy of Nachoman-au via Wikimedia Commons

Distance from Perth: 80 km
Highlights: White water, panoramic views bush setting
Track Length: N/A

The Avon Valley National Park offers some of Perth’s easiest off-road tracks. Most roads are even suitable for 2WD in the dry season but winter offers more of a challenge. The wet months also offer spectacular views of the Avon River with its white water rapids and tranquil pools. Sappers Road closes over the winter months blocking vehicle access to the river. Cobblers Pool has the nearest river access.

There is plenty of birdlife and wildlife, including reintroduced wallabies and bandicoots and the odd kangaroo, so keep an eye out. There is also some history to discover - look out for Joe’s Cage where Moondyne Joe hid his stolen horses and cattle.

 

Get Out There and Enjoy a Drive Near Perth

So there you have it, six easy 4WD tracks near Perth that offer a great day out exploring the area. Start off with WA’s simple tracks close to home, then move to the more adventurous 4x4 tracks dotted around our great state. The Googs Track is a more adventurous track recommended for experienced 4WDers. Take a look at this article for our recommendations on tackling this track!

A couple of books have more tracks around Perth if you're keen to try some other tracks, have a look at 4WD Weekends out of Perth or 4WD Days out of Perth.

If you are after a particular book, map or a recommendation, don’t hesitate to ask the expert staff at The Chart & Map Shop by calling (08) 9335 8665 or contact us online.