The Stockyard Gully Caves are one of Western Australia
's best kept secrets. The main cave has a sandy bottom and is some 300m long from entrance to entrance. There are two shorter caves that are accessible for the more adventurous before reaching the "final" cave, which has no exit.
The caves can be approached from the Northern end via Lake Indoon
or the southern end from Cockleshell Gully Road. 4WD is only required for the sandy tracks and is suitable for towing off-road trailers/vans. Any 4WD is appropriate, as the larger rocky limestone outcrops on the track have been flattened off by CALM.
Although this trek can be completed in one day (mostly driving), it is a great weekend away with overnight campout at nearby Lake Indoon
is a large, freshwater lake, which covers 130 hectares, with a depth varying from approximately 1.5m - 5m depending on the seasons and rainfall. It is approximately 4.5kms around the lake. The Lake Indoon
facilities include camping grounds around the lake, an ablution block with hot water showers, and a tank for drinking water. The Carnamah Shire runs the campground at Lake Indoon
with campsites available on a first-in first served basis. A new gas BBQ and picnic area is available near the boat ramp on the north side of the Lake. Costs are $5 per person per night (½ price for kids), collected by rangers in the morning. Click www.carnamah.wa.gov.au
to view the Shire of Carnamah website providing further details on Lake Indoon
Interactive Route Map
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Stockyard Gully From:
This trek supports moving map, to take a virtual tour click on the Play button.
No permits are needed for the Stockyard Gully trek. Camping fees apply at Lake Indoon
- costs are $5 per person per night (½ price for kids), collected by rangers in the morning.
Things to See & Do
This is a basic 4WDing trip with no special preparation needed. If you manage to do this trip without seeing another vehicle, consider yourself blessed. If camping at Lake Indoon
, basic supplies are available only ~10 kms from the Lake at Eneabba or full supplies from Jurien Bay
, some ~50km south west. If travelling in the warmer months, ensure you have supplies of water on board.
The Cockleshell Gully Road entrance is a well-maintained gravel road that is capable of being traversed by any vehicle. The short 4Wdriving section to actually reach the caves is basically a sandy track with outcrops of limestone. It can be soft in the drier months but I have never had to reduce tyre pressures to get through. Soft roader vehicles without low range will easily be able to complete this trek.
Stockyard Gully Caves can be approached from two ends. The "southern" approach is from Cockleshell Gully Road and is typically the way out if one has camped overnight at Lake Indoon
. The "northern" end is approached from Eneabba/Coolimba Road, off which Lake Indoon
Fuel Supplies & Usage
Fuel is also available at Cataby (which is just off the Brand Highway around 32kms north of the Moore River bridge) and Eneabba (about 12kms east of Lake Indoon
Camp Sites & Accommodation
The erosion from a creek fed upstream from the surrounding plains formed the caves. Further erosion over the years has resulted in roof cave-ins, leaving natural entrances to the caves. These caves are a natural water course and the creek flows in the wetter months. There are warnings not to enter the caves in severe rainstorms as the cave can flood! One can see the levels that were reached in the local flood of 1999.