The Marrinup Trail meanders through some of Australia’s oldest rocks, which are more often exposed on this part of the Darling Scarp near Dwellingup, south of Perth. The mountain bike trail passes through native jarrah forest and redgum. The interesting ‘Cage in the bush’ Prisoner of War (POW) camp is located a short distance from the trail.
Proceeding clockwise, this easy to follow loop trail starts at the old Marrinup town site which was destroyed by bush fire in 1961. The 7.9 kilometre Top Trail has a single track suitable for both the novice and experienced rider. The trail can be shortened to about four kilometres by using the short course return route. It varies from narrow, challenging tracks with flat sections and hill climbs to true gravel roads, with the ball bearing like bauxite gravel making things pretty interesting for mountain biking.
During World War II thousands of Italian and German POW’s spent time here cutting wood for Perth before being billeted out to Western Australian farms. Buildings no longer exist, but there are foundations, gardens and some fencing and it’s fascinating to stroll around the camp trying to imagine what life would’ve been like for the POW’s.