Viewing fossils in mammoth Cave Credit Rachel Claire

Mammoth Cave: A Story Of Regeneration

A trip to Mammoth Cave currently offers the rare opportunity to witness the beauty of regeneration after fire.

As seeds descend to their secret life in the soil and birdsong returns to the forest, a trip to Mammoth Cave currently offers the rare opportunity to witness a new life stage of the natural landscape and the beauty of regeneration after fire.

Bushfires have shaped Australia’s landscape for millions of years, providing many native plants with the opportunity to regenerate – grow, bloom and thrive. With this new growth wildlife returns, and native animal sightings are plentiful. With so much raw beauty, now is the time to experience Mammoth Cave like never before, and be awed by a landscape that is reinventing itself.

The Forest Regenerating Around Mammoth Cave. Credit Holly Winkle
Green bursts of new growth are already appearing around Mammoth Cave. Photo credit Holly Winkle.

Mammoth Cave is nestled in the heart of a region of outstanding beauty – above and below ground. It is situated only 15-minutes south of Margaret River and explorers of all ages and abilities can discover and connect with nature at the most easily accessible cave in the South West.

Did You Know?

  • Many species of native Australian plants have adaptations that help the species to survive fire. Banksia ‘cones’ produce seed pods (or woody fruits) that protect their seeds. Surprisingly, these seed pods are dependent on fire! The heat triggers the pods to slowly open, and once the fire has passed the seeds will be released into the freshly cleared soil, so they can germinate and grow into new plants.
  • Mammoth Cave was Western Australia’s first palaeontology site. Palaeontology is the study of ancient life based on the examination of fossils.
Mammoth Cave with children. Credit Holly Winkle
Mammoth Cave is a self-guided experience, so it's great for visiting with children. Photo credit Holly Winkle.

Visiting Mammoth Cave With Children

With four young children in tow, we entered Mammoth Cave via a gentle sloping boardwalk and were immediately immersed into the depths of the jaw-dropping enormous first chamber. The cool temperature (which ranges from 6°c in winter to 15°c in summer) was a welcome reprieve on a hot summers day, and the self-guided tour allowed us to explore the cave at our own pace.

There’s no doubt that nature tells the best stories, and the stunning surroundings of the cave have been brought to life via an informative audio tour provided through an MP3 player, a big hit with the kids.

For budding young palaeontologists, Mammoth Cave is an opportunity to make childhood dreams come true. With over 10,000 fossils having once accumulated within the cave, our young cave explorers discovered ancient Australian Megafauna fossils and loved searching for the 50,000 year old ‘zygomaturus’ jawbone (a relative of today’s wombat and one of the largest marsupials that have ever lived!) which is still embedded in the cave wall.

Mammoth Cave. Credit Holly Winkle
The fascinating fossils tell stories of the past. Photo credit Holly Winkle.

As the boardwalks and staircases lead you through the enormity of the cave, soft lighting accentuates its magnificent formations and encourages you to let your imagination run wild.

The children relished at the opportunity to imagine and spot the shapes of animals and objects amongst the caves formations – we imagined a crocodile, sparkling snowfields and an upside down ice-cream cone to name a few.

The caves natural winter stream was still gently flowing and the dappled reflections of the surrounding cave were stunning as we entered into the base of a large doline (a type of sinkhole).

The walk trail experience is currently being modified to support forest regeneration. You can now exit the cave the same way you enter and admire the formations once again from a different perspective.

Mammoth Cave is open 7 days a week from 9am-5pm, and offers self-guided tours with a suggested duration of 1-2 hours.

Regeneration at Mammoth Cave. Credit Holly Winkle.

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