Hang Gliding Association of WA

Perth Region Sites Guide

 Area Overview

This site guide covers sites within a reasonable day trip of Perth, these include low coastal dunes near the city, and inland ridges North and South of Perth on the Darling Scarp.

Index of  Perth Region Sites


Quinns Rocks

Varied beach site in the north of Perth.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Low Coastal Dune
 W
 Novice with Intermediate supervision.
 0 - 50 ft

Getting There:

Quinns is at the northern end of Marmion Avenue.  It is the next bitumen beach access north of Burns Beach.  Takeoffs can be found along Ocean Drive and  at the end of Waterland Pnt at the time of writing.  Urban expansion is creating more access to the north all the time.
 

Hazards:

Quinns looking north

Although only low dunes there can be rotor behind, and the strong winds required to fly can lead to injuries if dragged.  Any part of your glider landing in the ocean can be fatal - don’t become complacent with regards to these sites.
The northern part has many rocky outcrops and beach landing areas may be limited.  Do not risk landing on rocks or water.  If in any doubt stick to the southern parts of the face where there is a nice wide sandy beach.
Some parts of the ridge have roads, houses and powerlines behind.  Be very careful flying these parts and consider avoiding these areas altogether in stronger winds.

Flying:Quinns looking south

Take off from beach or from cleared areas and tracks at the top of the dune in the northern part.
Take care not to damage dune vegetation.
Council Rangers may deny you flying this site.
This is a public beach so watch out for spectators
There is potential for long flights to the north, possibly linking sites at Pippidinny road and Yanchep/Two Rocks in the right conditions.

Burns Beach

Good low beach site for a southwesterly wind.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Low Coastal Dune
 W, SW
 Novice
 0 - 50 ft

Getting There:

Burns beach is just before Quinn’s just north of Joondalup.  Take Hodges Drive exit of freeway, turn north at Marmion Ave then west on Burns Beach Road. Park at the end of Burns Beach Road, thedunes are north of the car park. The best launch area is a few minutes walk up the beach at a large blowout.  In ideal conditions intermediate and advanced pilots may be able to launch beside the toilet block north of the carpark.  4WD access to the beach further north is possible for those who like to get their cars dirty.
 

Hazards:

The alternate launching and landing beside the toilet block can be dangerous due to a complete lack of landing options if you don’t stay up or overshoot a landing. Only experienced pilots in ideal conditions should attempt this site.

Although only low dunes there can be rotor behind, and the strong winds required to fly can lead to injuries if dragged.  Any part of your glider landing in the ocean can be fatal - don’t become complacent with regards to these sites.

The gullies can exhibit a strong venturi effect, stay well in front in stronger winds.
 

Flying:

Take off from beach.be careful!
In a south south westerly only the biggest dune with the blow out is flyable.  With a good wind strength and WSW to SW winds several kilometres of flying up to the Mindarie Keys and Quinns Rocks  is possible, but it may be necessary to walk a few steps to cross the bigger gaps, especially upwind.
Council Rangers may deny you flying this site.
This is a public beach so watch out for spectators.
Take care not to damage dune vegetation
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Mullaloo Beach

A nice safe westerly facing dune near Perth.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Low Coastal Dune
 W
 Novice
 0 - 50 ft

Getting There:Nice Day at Mullaloo

Most direct access is to park in Merrifield place (see street directory) and take the footpath to the middle of the site. Alternatively a short walk south down the beach from Mullaloo Surf Club will get you there.
 

Hazards:

Although only low dunes there can be rotor behind, and the strong winds required to fly can lead to injuries if dragged.  Any part of your glider landing in the ocean can be fatal - don’t become complacent with regards to these sites.
Lots of radio controlled models here.
This is a public beach so watch out for spectators.
 Mullaloolooking south

Flying:

Take off from beach. Take care not to damage dune vegetation.
Flyable from the surf club to well south of the stairs, plenty of space behind the dunes before the road makes this a beach site suitable for novices.  The ridge is only short, however and can become crowded especially in light conditions, be prepared to take turns flying.

Council Rangers may deny you flying this site.
 

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Lieghton and Cottesloe Beach Cottesloe Re-Opened to Flying May 2005

Good beach site very close to Perth but hazardous due to proximity to the road and large numbers of bystanders.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Low Coastal Dune/Cliff
 W
 Advanced 
 0 - 50 ft

Getting There:

On Port Beach Road/Curtin Avenue between Cottesloe and Leighton Beach


Location Map

Hazards:

This site has an advanced rating for two main reasons, firstly there is a busy road behind launch at Leighton, and a less busy road at Cottesloe.  Do not fly if there is any danger of being blown back, a car will kill you a lot quicker than rotor. Secondly this is a popular beach in the heart of Perth, anyone flying here is a very visible ambassador for the sport.  It may not be possible to fly whilst maintaining legal required distance from spectators on a busy day.
The ridge at the Leighton end is the result of fill from the road's construction, and is full of rubble etc. and generally not pleasant to run into.  Watch out for the stairway, and spectators.
Beach landing can be very small and rocky in winter.
 

Flying:

Launch is possible from the beach in stronger conditions. In lighter conditions it is possible to launch fromCottesloe the top along Curtin Avenue, although the new fence (2001) makes it difficult. 

For the Cottesloe site the launch is from the park north of Vlamingh memorial offers is the takeoff and there is a gate in the fence there specifically to allow hangglider and paraglider launching. Check current status with club before flying.

Access from beach is only permitted by the designated stairways. Anyone walking up the dunes in between risks losing site access for everyone.

Site Rules:

As a very sensitive site in the heart of Perth shared with many non-flying members of the public some additional rules apply to this site.

<>They are mostly common sense, please ensure you abide by them and ensure we keep access to the site in the future.

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Mosman Park

Not an easy place to fly, but a stunning location above the river and some of Perth's more desirable real estate.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Sheer Cliff
 NE
Advanced
 100 ft

Getting There:

Bayview Park, Bayview Terrace, Mosman Park.
See street directory and location map

Location Map

Hazards:

Only fly this site if your top landing skills are very good as you may have to land in a hurry in a very tight space in lift or sink.the ridge
Top landing is tight, no bottom landing in river, the bushes on the ridge are a better option, do not underestimate the hazards of water landings, it is very easy to drown attached to a paraglider. Part of the face is sheer cliffs lots of powerlines and trees.
There is almost no safe option if the wind gets too strong while flying, so be cautious and land early if there is a possibility of strong winds.
Conditions can be hard to judge from the ground as due to the cliff the wind often feels lighter and a better direction on takeoff than it really is. This is a public park, take care to maintain clearance from the public.

This is a very extreme site for hanggliders, top landing is almost impossible on a hangglider, but it is possible to glide to a shallow water landing in the river to the north, or even a beach landing if you are very very good - not recommened.

Site Endorsement:

It is a requirement of our continued access to this site that only advanced pilots may fly there. Overseas pilots require IPPI5 or another rating accepted equivalent to the australian advanced rating. If you wish to fly this site and do not have an advanced rating, please contact an instructor and get one.

 

City flying

Flying:

Launch is possible from grassy areas at either end of the park, south end in a north easterly and north end in an easterly. Flying is not allowed past the end of the park as part of access arrangements with the council. Fantastic views over the city and across to Rottnest.

Often flyable in the mornings with thermals coming through later in the day.  The airspace ceiling of 1500 feet is achievable on rare days. In light conditions the site will only support 1-3 gliders so share the air.

People have been known to bottom land on the Point Walter Sand bar, but this entails either a long swim or a 10km walk to get back to take off, so out and returns are better.

Dave Morgan
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Sites South of Perth


Serpentine

Good site on the Darling Scarp

A large part of the ridge was burnt in December 2003 but is now open to flying again.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

 Inland Ridge
 WNW-SW

 PG-Novice with Advanced Supervision/Intermediate

HG - Intermediate

 400ft AGL

Permission/Log in:

The first pilots on site each day must check in with the owner before flying, if the owner cannot be contacted for any reason you may not enter the property. For this reason it is worthwhile to phone the owner before leaving home.

Getting There:

If you haven't been here before, contact a local club (See the main HGAWA page for club contacts), check on the current access arrangements, and organise your first flight with a club member who has good knowledge of this site. This site is privately owned, so is sensitive and could easily be lost.

It is located on the Darling Scarp drive about 5km south of Serpentine down Southwest highway. The site is just past the intersection with Kingsbury Drive.  The hill with the phone tower on top.  The landowner’s house is at the bottom of the hill. IMPORTANT - It is necessary to get permission from the landowner before each days flying.
 

Hazards:

The site is flyable in a southerly wind, but the air can be quite turbulent if the wind is south of south west, particularly immediately on takeoff. DO NOT let go of the brakes (PG) or let your airspeed get low (HG) before getting over the steep slope and out of the turbulent area.  Because of the shallow slope you may have to run again after launching if you start at the top.

If the wind is much north of west the take off area can be come very turbulent, and the gully to the right of launch even more so, suspect these conditions if you cant keep your glider inflated on launch.

The communication tower behind launch can be hazardous.  Do not fly if there is a danger of being blown back because terrain behind is very unforgiving, the gully to the left of launch can create a venturi.

A high tension powerlines runs down the gully to the right of launch and along the edge of the landing paddock, another runs parallel to the highway some distance inside the paddock, stay well away.

There are large area of trees in front of the ridge in places, keep enough height to glide out even if heavy sink is encountered. This is an inland site, which means heavy sink is not unusual, it would be very easy to put yourself in a situation where you cannot avoid a tree landing.
Serpentine launch from in front on a good day, take off in centre of pic
The local wedgies are usually friendly but have been known to attack and tear gliders.
Powerlines along one side, in between is a large area of tall trees. Away from the launch there the trees extend further in front of the ridge, and right to the top.
 

Flying:

The site is situated on the main Darling Scarp. The take off is a large gently sloping grassy area below the summit. Wind streamer on the takeoff seem to indicate better wind direction than it really is, look at the windmills out front as well.  In light conditions it is possible to launch near the top of the hill for extra height, although it can be rough until you get over the steep face.  Because launch is a little below the top of the hill winds aloft may be a little stronger on takeoff.
The trees mean that flying low can be is nerve wracking on this site, and less experienced pilots have a tendency to fly too far out of the lift band and land.  The site often exhibits strong thermal activity and rough air and sink. Be sure to allow enough height over the trees to cope with sink and collapses. Once a little height is gained the site is very enjoyable with great views. There appears to be good potential for cross country flights north or south along the scarp, but going over the back leads straight over extensive forest.
Novice pilots should stay to the right of the gully to avoid being caught in the trees by sink.
Top landing is not recommended, although the cleared area is large, it is sloping and can have very rough air particularly if the wind is off to the south. Bottom landing is possible in any of the paddocks in front, but be aware of the powerlines.  Low lying areas are very boggy in winter spring and autumn.

Site Records:

PG: Open distance- 24km Eric Metrot, December 02, Out and Return- 12km Justin Post 2004
HG- ?
 

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Warnbro

A nice southwest to westerly facing dune near Rockingham.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Low Coastal Dune
W-SW
 Novice
 0-50 ft AGL

Getting There:

Park in one of various carparks along Warnbro Beach Road for a South westerly, or for a westerly further south off St Malo Cov or St Ives Cov.

Hazards:Paul Liknaitzky at the west launch

Although only low dunes there can be rotor behind, and the strong winds required to fly can lead to injuries if dragged.  Any part of your glider landing in the ocean can be fatal - don’t become complacent with regards to these sites.
Public road close behind launch at the northern end. Lots of radio controlled models here.
This is a public beach so watch out for spectators.
Gordon McCabe on the southwest facing dune at the north of Warnbro

Flying:

Take off from beach or from grassy park in the northern section (SW wind). Take care not to damage dune vegetation.
The northern part is very low, so a strong wind is needed to fly.  In the southern part the dune is higher  but finding a good launch can be more difficult due to fences at top and bottom of the dune.

Council permission has been gained by HGAWA to fly on the northern part, flying from the park, but walking on the dunes is not permitted.



 

Avalon

A northwesterly coastal site south of Mandurah.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Coastal Low Dune
NW
 Novice
 0-50 ft AGL

Getting There:

Find your way to the beach at Avalon, south of Mandurah.

Hazards:

Although only low dunes there can be rotor behind, and the strong winds required to fly can lead to injuries if dragged.  Any part of your glider landing in the ocean can be fatal - don’t become complacent with regards to these sites.
Public road close behind launch at the northern end. Lots of radio controlled models here.
This is a public beach so watch out for spectators.

Bernie Lindahl flying at Avalon

Flying:

Quite a small site and rarely flown, maybe  washed away by storms occasionally, but the only NW option near perth.

Sites North of Perth


Two Rocks Beach

A pretty good beach flying site with a long and steep dune.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Low Coastal Dune
 W
 Novice
 0 - 50 ft

Getting There:2 rocks

Two Rocks is just north of the Yanchep shopping centre just past the Yanchep Marina off Sovereign Drive. Take the wooden boardwalk to get to the beach and the convenient parawaiting gazebo.
 

Hazards:

Although only low dunes there can be rotor behind, and the strong winds required to fly can lead to injuries if dragged.  Any part of your glider landing in the ocean can be fatal - don’t become complacent with regards to these sites.

Flying:Site hazard - remember to keep clear of Gordon

Take off from beach.
Take care not to damage dune vegetation.
Council Rangers may deny you flying this site.
This is a public beach so watch out for spectators

Seabird

Low coastal site with distance potential north of Perth.
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Low Coastal Dune
 W
 Novice
0 - 50 ft

Getting There:

Carry on up Wanneroo Rd past Two Rocks, eventually there is a turnoff signposted to Seabird.  About an hours drive north of Perth.  Once in town there are several beach access points, any of which will do.  The Seabird tavern overlooks one potential launch.
 

Hazards:

Seabird looking north

Although only low dunes there can be rotor behind, and the strong winds required to fly can lead to injuries if dragged.  Any part of your glider landing in the ocean can be fatal - don’t become complacent with regards to these sites.
In seabird itself parts of the ridge have roads, houses and powerlines close behind.  Be very careful flying these parts. There is plenty of ridge without obstructions to the north and south of town, so there is no reason to take any risks, particularly in stronger winds.

Flying:

Take off from beach or from cleared areas and tracks at the top of the dune.
Take care not to damage dune vegetation.
This is a public beach so watch out for spectators .
The ridge run to Guilderton (the next town to the north) has been done before.  Pleasant flying but possibly a long walk if conditions change.

Gingin

Inland site north of Perth. One of few sites that works on the typical SSW summer sea breeze in perth
 

Site Type

Direction

Rating

Take off Altitude

Inland Ridge
SSW-SW
 Novice
 100ft agl

Getting There:

Near Gingin (about 1 hour north of Perth on the Brand Highway).  This site is privately owned.  The owner wishes allGingin in winter contact to be through a few people.  If you wish to fly this site contact Jirri Hlavaty (contact numbers on main page of this web site). Organise your first flight here with a club member who has good knowledge of this site. As with all privately owned sites, this site is sensitive and could easily be lost.
The site is about 5km north of Gingin, accessed off the Brand Highway.  Get directions from someone who has been there.
 

Hazards:

Potential for rotor if you get low in front.  Low ridge, so flying is usually close to the ground, it is an inland site so potential for strong lift, sink and turbulence form thermal activity.  The face is very rocky. It may look the size of a sand dune but it hurts more if you hit it, and the wind is not as dependable as on the coast, be cautious. Probably only safe to fly in smooth evening conditions or in winter.

Flying:

Very small ridge, works better than it looks like it should. Nice big grassy launch.  If you get low you will be in rotor of the ridge in front, its best to stay above take off if possible and top land. If you sink out land on the flat area immediately below takeoff.  Can be flyable on the summer sea breeze, but generally only late in the day when the strength dies off.

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Criticism and contributions welcome e-mail Mike Dufty www.mikedufty.id.au
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Created by Mike Dufty//last updated 12 April 2006©