The Harewood Forest is a pretty place along the Scotsdale Tourist Drive to stop for a picnic or a leisurely bushwalk through the karris and along a brook.
When my grandparents lived down in Denmark, we’d often drive round to Harewood Forest with a thermos of tea and some cake, stopping for a morning tea picnic at one end of the short walktrail or the other before continuing down the road to the alpaca farm or the meadery.
My favourite time to visit this small pocket of forest is on a cold, rainy and misty day in winter or spring. Spring is the best time of year to see the birds and wildflowers of the forest.
About the Harewood Forest:
The Harewood forest is a place of peace and tranquility. The air is fresh and damp, carrying the smell of the forest and sweet sound of bird songs and whistles from all directions. Karri trees tower over head, and if you pay attention you’ll see the tiny wrens and other birds all around you, flitting between the treetops and amongst the dense shrubs of the understory.
It’s hard to believe that over the course of ten years around the turn of the twentieth century, over 20000 hectares of karri trees – of which the Harewood Forest was a part – were cut down and almost completely wiped out, but that’s what the interpretive signs along the walk will tell you.
Back then the trees were felled by hand, using cross-cut saws and axes.
The Harewood Forest is a pocket of karri trees that regenerated. The karris in the Harewood forest are tall and thin, with a dense understory of karri wattle and other karri forest plants. This is indicative of a regrowth karri forest that was logged in the past. You won’t see many of the massive, wide-girthed karris (common around Walpole and Pemberton) in the Denmark area.
Picnics in the Harewood Forest
The Harewood Forest is a delightful place to enjoy a picnic. It’s so peaceful and pretty! The only problem is, the air is very damp which means so are the wooden picnic benches (though not all the time).
There are two little clearings in the forest, one at the start of the walk trail just across the bridge from the carpark, and the other about 600m away at the very end of the trail. Each clearing has one picnic bench.
The Harewood Forest Walk Trail
The walk through the forest is a little over half a kilometre one-way. It’s an easy, level walk but it can get muddy in places after rain.
Start at the carpark, where there’s an information shelter. Cross the brook over the long wooden bridge, which will bring you to the first picnic bench.
Turn left and follow the track as it follows more or less along the banks of the brook. Often you can hear the babbling brook but not see it because the forest understory is so dense.
If you’re interested in the nature of the karri forest and Denmark’s history, you can stop to read the information plaques along the walk.
Last Updated: 29th May, 2015.
First posted on 13th October, 2013 by Bonny.
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