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  • Writer's pictureOut and About

Yellagonga Regional Park - Lake Joondalup - Neil Hawkins Park to Picnic Cove

Updated: Apr 10

Catching a brief spot of sunshine on another wet weekend we went down to Yellagonga Regional Park and walked from Neil Hawkins to Picnic Cove. Neil Hawkins Park is situated on the western side of Lake Joondalup and is a popular picnic spot. It is within walking distance of Joondalup Train Station and also has a large car park, toilets, picnic benches and barbecues. Thank you to #walkingwesternaustralia for posting a photo of the different distances from Neil Hawkins to various spots around Lake Joondalup as this inspired us for today's walk. There is a dual use path that encircles the lake.

Neil Hawkins to Picnic Cove in Edgewater is 2.5km each way providing a pleasant walk taking about an hour (return) at a good pace. The dual use path is flat so is ideal for kids to ride bikes or scooters and the fact that there are playgrounds at both ends makes this an appealing family outing. Be aware that cyclists using this path approach at speed and don't always ring their bell so keep left. Dogs are permitted (except within Neil Hawkins Park) but must be kept on a lead.

We set off from Neil Hawkins following the paved path alongside the lake's edge. The water levels are high after all the rain and we enjoyed catching glimpses of the lake through the paperbark trees. We could hear waterbirds out on the lake and the occasional frog. Signs and pavement designs warn you about turtle hatchlings which can cross the path between June and August. Unfortunately we didn't see any of these cute critters on our walk.

Picnic Cove is a lovely spacious area with sloping green banks ideal for the kids to roll down! There is another ping pong table here as well as a large playground, picnic benches and barbecues (no toilets). Dogs are permitted off lead here. The edge of the lake is accessible and provides a great viewing spot to see the waterbirds out on the lake.

On our walk back our attention turned to the left side of the path and instead of looking at the big things we found ourselves discovering the little things like fungi, bark, banksias, flowers and termite mounds. The wildflowers are just starting to bud and should put on a lovely display in the coming weeks.

On another occasion we walked from Picnic Cove to Ocean Reef Road which completed our circumnavigation of the Lake Joondalup Circuit in sections.

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In the spirit of reconciliation Out and About- Family Nature Connection acknowledges the traditional owners of the Wadjak boodjar (Perth land) and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and emerging and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.

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