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18 April 2012 / leggypeggy

A landlocked wave

Salt lake near Wave Rock

Hyden and Wave Rock were our next stop, and what a worthwhile detour this was.

The rock is located at the west end of the Granite and Woodlands Discovery Trail and about four-hours drive east of Perth. It is a natural formation that is shaped like a giant surf wave. It’s about 14 metres (47 feet) high and 110 metres (350 feet) long.

The multi-coloured wave, which is culturally significant to Aboriginals, forms the north side of a solitary hill, know as Hyden Rock. The rock and nearby small town of Hyden were named in the 1880s after a Mr Hyde, who was a local sandalwood cutter. How, you ask, does Hyde’s Rock become Hyden Rock? A typo. In those early days, the person responsible for maps misread the name, and its been Hyden ever since.

Hyden Rock in the distance across the salt lake.

The wave and hill are a granite inselberg, and part of a 160-hectare nature reserve call Hyden Wildlife Park.

Poor John and I arrived two hours before dusk. After checking out the salt lake near the rock, we went on to the local campground. We put up the tent, and set out to climb the rock, but it started to rain. Trust me, that rock is slippery in the wet, so we clambered down and postponed the climb until sunrise. And what a great climb is was.

We were surprised to read that the rock gets a mere 140,000 visitors each year. What a shame, as it’s really worth a stop. Maybe it’s just too far into the middle of nowhere.

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