Top Holiday Tips

No one will be saying ‘I’m bored,’ with this list of things to do. The best part is they are all free or really low cost activities that will have the kids sleeping soundly at the end of the day.
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Have a go at the Currawong Pump Track

This little track is located at the Potters Gorge Campsite in Wellington National Park and is perfect for kids of all ages.

There is a section for the very little ones with the cutest little log roll overs and some decent fast track and a couple of nice berms for the bigger kids to hone their skills on.

Visit the Coalfields Museum 

Located opposite the Visitor Centre on Throssell St, this museum houses an incredible collection of historical artifacts.

There is a mining display, depicting how mining has changed over the years and other displays show what life was like for families  living in Collie many years ago.

Admission fees are Adults $5 and Children $2.50
Check their Facebook page for holiday open times.

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Check out Central Park 

Central Park is just over the railway line on Forrest St. There is plenty of shade, where the grown ups can relax while the kids enjoy the modern nature play style playground, with an array of contraptions to have them testing their balance and nerve.

If the weather is warm enough there is a FREE water park! So, don’t forget to bring their bathers and listen to them shriek and giggle as they dodge the jets of water.

Ride the Wagyl Biddi MTB Trail

Pack the bikes and ride the Wagyl Biddi. You will find the trail head at Soldiers Park near the playground and toilets. The trail follows the river before breaking into two sections. The outer loop of the trail is easier for less experienced riders but the inner three loops are more challenging with a couple of awesome berms, some jumps, a table top, rock gardens and steep climbs. If you don’t have your own bikes, you can hire them from Crank’n Cycles for about the same price as taking the family to the movies.

Go Train Spotting

Collie has a rich rail history and you will find evidence of this at various places around town.

The Old Collie Railway Station is on Throssell St and has a working model train of Collie town back in the day.
Across the line you will find the Bill Weirs Rolling Stock Shed (open Mon, Wed and Fri mornings) and there are four old rail engines and a mining shovel at the Visitor Centre.
There is even a real old wagon, converted into a modern cafe in Central Park.

Kayak on the Collie River

Unfortunately you will need your own kayaks for this, as there is currently no one in town hiring them (Business opportunity anyone?)

But once you have the kayaks sorted there is no shortage of water.

We recently made a list of ten fantastic spots you can get the kayak wet in the CRV.

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Camp out and Cook on a Campfire

There is nothing like cooking dinner on a campfire and toasting marshmallows over the coals.

The CRV is really popular for camping and a lot of places are booked out. But, you might snag a spot at Stockton Lake if you get there early.

Or the Collie River Valley Tourist Park is the perfect base to explore the CRV and they tell me they have a few spaces left, but be quick!

Go Underground

The Replica Underground Mine is accessed via the Collie Visitor Centre, but once inside it feels like you are really underground.

If you are on a tight schedule, you can do a self guided tour using the interpretive panels and displays, but if you are able to plan ahead and book a tour with a real retired underground miner we highly recommend you do. You will be taken on a journey back in time when mining was much different than today.
Admission fees Adult $5 School age child $3

Take a VR Tour

While you are at the Visitor Centre be sure to check out the Virtual Reality equipment.

You can choose between a lap of the Motorplex Track in a racing car, paddle a  kayak down the Collie River or pedal one of the Collie Trails on a mountain bike.

Its all totally free and heaps of fun. You can try all three is you like! You don’t need any special ability to have a go. 

Pack a Picnic and Go Exploring

There are lots of places to go exploring in the CRV, but one of our favourites would have to be Lennard Drive in Wellington National Park.
There are four sign posted spots to explore; The Rapids, Big Rock, Little Rock and Long Pool and they are all perfect for a picnic. Honeymoon Pool is another favourite spot, just a bit further down stream from Long Pool. Make sure you check out our post on Lennard Drive for a map an info about the secret pool.

Click here for more cool picnic ideas.

Tackle the Skate Park

This state of the art Skate Park was built a few years back and has had some serious use by the local kids. It includes a tight bowl, some awesome ramps and other technical features for the kids to test their skills against.

It’s located at Soldiers Park on Lefroy St. There is a children’s playground adjacent to the skate park so all the kids can play nearby while the grown ups take a break under the shady trees or at one of the picnic tables provided. There are toilets and BBQs provided if you want to make a day of it.

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Dead Cat Trail

The Dead Cat Trail network is by far the most popular with local riders, offering four loops of 3.5 km, 10 km, 15 km and 20 km in length..

How to find it…

The three longer loops can be accessed on Mornington Rd, off Harris River Rd, about 4 km north of Collie, but the 3.5 km loop is accessed from Harris River Rd opposite Rays Trail carpark. 

There is parking at both trail heads but, if you prefer, you can ride the Munda Biddi out from town to Mornington Rd, not far from the start of Dead Cat Trail. Eventually there will be a new trail section to connect the two.

Easy ride…

The 15 km loop is probably the most challenging with some steep uphill sections, but the other loops are less demanding,  with a couple of decent log rides and other interesting features to negotiate.

Trail Network..

From Dead Cat Trail, you can link into Ray’s Trail or The 220, that follows Harris River Rd all the way to Harris River Dam.  At the moment The 220 is a two way trail, so watch out for oncoming riders, but in time a link will be added to create another circuit linking back into Dead Cat.

Artworks…

Someone with a sense of humour has installed a number of ‘artworks’ along the trail. I wonder what stories this old relic could tell us?

Spring flowers…

In Spring the trail is ablaze with wildflowers, if you have time to take in the scenery.

Maps and directions…

For maps and more info, call into Crank’n Cycles Collie. All the guys in the shop are keen riders and know the local trails well. They will be able to help you work out the perfect days riding. 

And for after ride refreshments, Harris River Estate Winery can be accessed directly from Ray’s Trail, Wed to Sun for a light lunch  or the Feddy in town for a right slap up meal.

Oh and why Dead Cat? It has something to do with a dead cat…..

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The Wiilman Bilya Trail

This brand new trail can be found in the Wellington National Park, Collie WA and is just the start of what will eventually be an epic trail network. 

The 20 km trail starts at Potters Gorge and winds its way through some magnificent Black Butt and Jarrah forest, over huge moss covered granite out crops, ending at the Coalfields Hwy.

Following the water

For over half of the trail, you have the waters of Wellington Dam on one side and the serenity of the bush on the other, affording some spectacular scenery. 

The trail twists and turns through the forest and the eerie calls of the Black Cockatoos are always present.

Huge, ancient trees

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There are some amazing huge old trees along the trail

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We loved these magnificent, huge grass trees Photo – Holly Fisher

Below are two short videos of the Wiilman Bilya Track. The first one was taken at the Coalfields Hwy end and the other a few km from Potters Gorge. The scenery is quite different but equally as stunning all along the trail.

Nyingarn Campsite

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The brand new Nyingarn Campsite has several timber sleeping platforms and over looks the dam. You will find the campsite about 3.5 km from the Coalfields Hwy

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People would pay a fortune to have dinner with these spectacular views

Eventually the campsite will include 16 tent sites, but that section is currently still under construction.  There are new long drop toilets and rain water tanks.

There is also the option of camping at Potters Gorge, but site must be booked online before arriving https://parks.dpaw.wa.gov.au/park-stay

Coalfields Trail Head

Finding the Trail Head from the Coalfields Hwy end can be a bit tricky, so check it out on the map below.

There is a parking area just east of what is known locally as Hamilton’s Bridge. From there you need to exit the car park the way you drove in and follow the hwy over the bridge/causeway. Most of the time you are walking behind the railing along the edge of the road. You will easily find where to access the trail on the other side.

 The trail is marked by brown foot prints.

If you start the trail from this end, you will probably, like us, find the traffic noise distracting at first, but before long the bush closes in around you and the calls of the Cockatoos take over. The only distracting things now are the birds  flitting around the trees and butterflies drifting lazily along the track.

The Track – MundAl

‘The Track’ is a 4WD track starting in Mundaring, near Perth WA and ending in Albany on the south coast. It is not hard core 4WDing, but it is 900 km of mostly gravel roads, with some amazing scenery and heaps of fun along the way. The Track will eventually be 4000 km long and each section will have it’s own name. This section is known as the MundAL, by combining the names Mundaring and Albany.

You can camp out at various places along the track or chose to stay in one of the towns the Track passes through, such as Collie. Read on for several great suggestions on camping and accommodation, where to eat and what not to miss.

Collie boasts two major supermarkets, open 7 days a week; two fuel outlets, one of which is open 24/7 and numerous specialty stores selling clothing and gift ware.

There are several options for accommodation ranging from a caravan park with tent/van sites and onsite chalets, a back packer style motel, several country pubs and an upmarket motel with modern apartments; plenty of eating places offering a variety of cuisines and some fantastic attractions that are well worth a visit.

Accommodation

You will most likely pass through Collie on the first day and if you are looking for a comfy bed you have a number of choices. Click on the pictures to be redirected for more info and bookings etc. For even more accommodation options contact the Collie Visitor Centre

The Colliefields is very reasonable priced and offers clean rooms, comfy beds and awesome hot rainfall showers. A simple breakfast of cereal, fruit and toast is included in the price of the room.
Collie River Valley Tourist Park offers caravan and tent sites and onsite cabins. The park is known for its immaculately clean facilities.
If you want something a little more up market, The Ridge Motel is a fairly new, modern motel with all the trimmings you would expect. if you really want to indulge, you could even book a spa room.
The Federal Hotel Collie offer comfy clean rooms and serve all the pub favourites for lunch and dinner in the restaurant downstairs, all in a family friendly environment.

If camping is more your style

There are two designated camping spots, in the Collie Shire, along The Track. (For info on other camping spots near Collie click here) Camping and lighting of fires is not allowed outside these areas. Fires are not permitted at Glen Mervyn at any time of the year.

Stockton Lake is situated 10 km east of Collie and although it is a slight diversion from The Track it is well worth it to see the amazing blue water.
Glen Mervyn Campsite is right on The Track, a short drive out of Collie and offers free camping on the banks of the dam.

 

Places to eat

There is no shortage of places to eat in Collie and a good variety of cuisines available. Here are a few of our favourites, but you will certainly find others if you go for a stroll along Throssell or Forrest Sts.

The Colliefields are easy to find on Throssell St and open early for breakfast. They also serve delicious lunches, decadent cakes, superb coffee and a huge range of teas. If you dare, try one of their megashakes.
Wagon 537 are located in Central Park and are open early for breakfast and lunch. They serve up delicious wraps, fantastic burgers, great coffee and fresh juices.
Jax Diner are on the corner of Forrest and Atkinson Sts and open from 7 to 3 on Monday to Saturday. They offer a range of delicious meals and healthy salads. Choose to eat indoors or alfresco.
If you like genuine Thai food then don't miss 8 Thai Ladies on the corner of Forrest and Steere Sts. They are open for lunch and dinner on Tuesday to Saturday and lunch on Sunday and Monday.

 

Things to do in Collie

If you are travelling with kids and they need to let off steam, Central Park and the Water Playground is perfect. In the warmer weather the kids love the free water park and coffee is nearby at Wagon 537.
Soldiers Park is another favourite spot for families with kids. The littlies love the playground and the bigger kids have a blast at the skate park. There is even a Liberty Swing for kids with disabilities.
Here in Collie we are very proud of our A Class Art Gallery that attracts some pretty impressive exhibitions. Check out their Facebook Page for what is on show currently.
Once inside The Replica Underground Mine is just like a real mine. Take the self guided tour, or ring ahead to arrange a tour with a real retired underground miner as your guide.
The Coalfields Museum houses the most amazing collection of items from Collie's coal mining past.
Collie is home to some amazing MTB and Walking Trails suitable for all the family. Check out the #CollieTrails tab on the menu for details

 

Stay safe, be responsible and have fun!

While using The Track, always drive carefully and exercise common sense.

Stay on The Track to avoid the spread of dieback . There is a Car Wash in Collie, where you can thoroughly wash your vehicle, including the underneath, to prevent the spread of disease that can kill our local forests. You will find it on the corner of Throssell and Brunswick  Sts at the eastern end of town.

Avoid causing unnecessary damage to The Track, so others can enjoy it after you. Remember for the people who live in the communities you are passing through, these are their local roads and they need to be able to use them to go about their daily business of getting the kids to school and going to the shops etc.

Carry plenty of water just in case, take all your rubbish away with you, check current local fire restrictions before lighting a fire and consider investing in a camping toilet before you set off, or at the very least a small shovel or trowel to dig a hole with.

But most of all have heaps of fun and bring home some amazing memories!

NOTE: ‘The Track’ is what is known as a live track. The actual route may change seasonally if roads are closed due to fires and floods etc. To get the current route, go to the WA 4WD website a few days before setting off and download the Way Points   DOWNLOAD THE WAY POINTS HERE 

WATCH THE VIDEO – THE TRACK  

The Colliefields – Yes! We are trail friendly.

Collie is one of the few Trail Towns on both the Bibbulmun and Munda Biddi Trails. Every year hundreds of trail users pass through town and many of them spend a night or two at The Colliefields. Proprietors, Michélè  and Gary make everyone welcome and go out of their way to make sure their guests are well looked after.

Secure storage for bikes and cars

One of the challenges of walking or riding the track is managing the logistics of transport and working out the best place to leave a car for the return journey. It often means getting someone to drive long distances to provide transport, or doing the car shuffle, and back tracking every few days; never being quite sure if your car will still be there when you return.
 
Not if you are staying at the Colliefields. There is a secure yard at the rear of the building, where you can leave your car until you return or lockup your bike overnight. 
 

Track Transfers

The Colliefields can also pick you up and drop you off at the trail if necessary. Ring ahead if possible, so they can make sure there is a driver available, when you need a ride. Or if things go wrong and you need to get to town in a hurry, The Colliefields will collect you and get you settled into the hotel, until you are able to make your way home.
 

Hot showers and comfy beds

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As nice as it is sleeping under the stars, there is nothing like a wonderful hot shower and a nice warm comfortable bed. Every one who stays at the Colliefields comments on the awesome rainfall shower heads, but then after a few days on the track any shower would seem like bliss.

They offer a range of rooms including single, twin, double, en-suite and dorm rooms. All at very affordable prices.

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Proprietor Michélè says, 'Our visitors love our piping hot rainfall showers after a few days on the trail'

 Free breakfast

Breakfast selection

A scrumptious, continental breakfast is included in the price of your room and includes toast, cereal, milk, yoghurt,  fruit, tea, coffee and juice.

The down stairs dining room opens early and you can purchase a full cooked breakfast at any time of the day or order a packed lunch for on the track

Free washing machines for guests

All guests at The Colliefields have access to washing machines at no extra cost.

Guest lounge

There is a comfy lounge where guests like to gather and share trail experiences or relax in front of the TV after a long day walking or riding.

If only those walls could talk. They would have more than one hundred years of tales to tell!

The Colliefields are not licenced these days, but there are several pubs withing walking distance, serving ice cold beers and wholesome meals. 

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Centrally Located

You will find The Colliefields on Throssell Street, which is the main street running through town. It’s easily identified by it’s striking purple exterior. Only a short walk to the supermarket, banks, post office and anywhere else you may need to go, it’s the perfect location.

Contact them by phone 9734 2052 or email welcome@colliefields.com and say Why i #visitcollie sent you.

Collie Canvas and Camping World stock a huge range of supplies for on the track. Crank’n Cycles Collie carry a range of spare parts and can provide emergency repairs if required.

Today we rode Ray’s Trail!

Winter gave a brief pause, enough for us to throw the Mountain Bikes in the back of the car and head out to check out Rays Trail. Only a short 5 minute drive out of town along Harris River Road, Rays Trail offers convenient parking right at the trail head in a large gravel carpark. We offloaded the bikes and set off. 

We’re no MTB experts by any means, super novices in fact. But that’s the beauty of mountain biking, you don’t really need that expensive bike to have a great time. Rays Trail is a family friendly 8km loop and is largely set on the side of a large hill. So there’s plenty of fast downhill action. The flipside to that is there’s plenty of uphill to battle too! 

Featuring a log ride and plenty of small jumps and logs to negotiate there’s enough to keep most happy. We were kept company by a flock of noisy Red Tailed Cockatoos as we tackled the course. 

 

Rays Trail Log Ride

Setting off around noon we arrived back at the carpark around 2pm. We included plenty of breaks along the way for some water and photographs.

Also Located on Harris River Road is the Harris River Estate Winery. An excellent choice for a lunch and cellar door visit. The winery also has Cabins for accommodation and are ideally situated to take advantage of not only Rays Trail but the nearby 220 and Dead Cats Trails.

It was a fun afternoon with a few challenging obstacles and more than a few fun fast downhill sections. Well worth a visit in our book!

Rays Trail Log Roll
Harris River Estate Winery

TRAIL TOWNS – COLLIE

Collie is a friendly little town on both the Bibbulmun and Munda Biddi Tracks and we love to play host to the many trail users, who pass through our town each year. So, if you are planning an epic hike or ride and will be passing through Collie in the near future, we have compiled a list of trail friendly businesses and their services.

The Colliefields

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The Colliefields offer clean, budget accommodation with breakfast included. Access to wi-fi and phone recharge facilities, secure bike storage and track transfers for overnight guests.

They accept parcels (posted or delivered) to be collected on your way through Collie and they have a cafe opening early, serving cooked breakfasts, lunches and snacks.

You will find them on Throssell Street. Just look for the big purple building.

The Collie Visitor Centre

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The Collie Visitor Centre offer hot showers for a small fee, clean toilets, secure storage for backpacks while you go shopping (not overnight), maps and info, wi-fi and phone recharge facilities and drop off point for parcels.

Open 7 days a week. Check their Facebook page for hours.

Located at the western end of town, on Throssell St

Crank'n Cycles Collie

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Crank’n Cycles Collie offer an extensive range of bike spare parts and the very best of repair services.

They are open Mon to Fri and Sat am, but if you are broken down a/h, message the shop via Facebook and if someone is available they will have you back on the track in no time.

The staff are all experienced riders and can provide advice on local trails or pretty much anything bike or trail related.

Collie Canvas and Camping World

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Collie Canvas and Camping World stock all the popular gas cartridges, hiking stoves, freeze dried food, thermal underwear, head torches, fly nets, hats, Keen Boots, quality hiking socks, hiking poles and heaps of other useful things for trail users.

They are open Mon to Fri and Sat am. If you are going to be arriving in town a/h message the shop to arrange a pick up point for you, if possible.

Located on cnr Princep and Johnston Sts. Just look for the big green building down from the traffic lights

Collie River Valley Tourist Park

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Collie River Valley Tourist Park offer immaculately clean cabins and ablutions.

They will store parcels for trail users who have booked accommodation. Ring them to arrange.

Powered, tent sites are also available and there is  a seriously well equipped campers kitchen.

PaK-iT Computers

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PaK-iT Computers stock a range of phone chargers and cables, offer access to wi-fi and phone recharge facilities, same day screen replacement services (dependent on screens in stock)

Other Useful Bits and Pieces

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Coles and Woolworths
Open 7 days a week

Bubble O’s Laundromat
Located on Pendleton St
Open 7.30 am to 8 pm daily

CaltexCollie
Open 24/7 for fuel

If you need a trail transfer, message us on Facebook and we will try to assist, especially if someone is injured or just had enough. 

Where to Eat

Finding you way around.

Finding your way around is pretty easy. Throssell St is the main street in and out of town and Forrest St is on the other side of the railway line. Most places are on or near either of them.

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