bhp_orn_rgb_posOur Foundation has partnered with BHP Billiton to implement the Karlinyah Bidi  and Wardan Nara Bidi which are two of the five sections of the Wadjemup Bidi project.

The Karlinyah Bidi is approximately 6km and guides visitors through the beautiful bays of the northern beaches. The trail connects to Gabbi Karniny Bidi, through the salt lakes, and Wardan Nara Bidi, at Narrow Neck. The warmth of the sun on this sections means you are bound to experience an abundance of wildlife soaking up the suns rays.

The Wardan Nara Bidi is approximately 10km and allows visitors to explore the beauty of Salmon Bay and then cross over land to explore the WWII guns and tunnels.  Visitors can climb to the highest point on the Island, to the top of Wadjemup Lighthouse, and then continue on west to world class surf break Strickland Bay!

BHP Billiton’s funding of over $500,000 will allow new beach access to be constructed at Catherine Bay, Little Armstrong Bay, Armstrong Point and Narrowneck to formalise entry to these popular sites, aiding to minimize erosion and deterioration of the coastal vegetation caused by informal access.

Interpretive stories that can be told along the trail will include management issues linking climate change, importance of sustainable fishing, Aboriginal significance & connection to the Island, maritime communication & history and the importance of volunteers in achieving success in conservation of Rottnest Island.

These stories will be told using signage both static and audio, an interpretive sculpture and a mini-documentary linked to QR code technology. Consultation will occur with Aboriginal Traditional Owners from the Whadjuk Nation to acquire their oral stories and associated illustrations.

Facilities including bin enclosures, directional signage, bike racks, seats and a shelter will be installed along the trail to provide shade, rest, relaxation and convenience to improve the visitor experience.

Over 6900 seedlings will be planted to revegetate denuded areas and adhoc informal access trails.

BHP Billiton’s support will also allow the Winnit Club volunteers to come over to Rottnest to help with construction elements of the trail.

The Winnit Club is the longest standing community group who has been volunteering on the Island since 1931. They are providing volunteer labour for the implementation of the Wadjemup Bidi in the form of construction of the trail itself and associated works such as fencing, building beach access stairs, installing facilities and Island signage (interpretive & directional).

Both sections inclusive of all conservation works is due to be completed and open to the public by December 2016.

3This is the largest single amount of funding that the Rottnest Foundation has acquired to-date and we are very excited about working with BHP Billiton to implement this section of trail.

The exciting news was announced at an event held at the new Seal Viewing Platform at Cathedral Rocks, Rottnest Island on the 14th August 2015; where Minister Hon Kim Hames, BHP Billiton Iron Ore’s Senior Manager of Community and Indigenous Affairs Richard O’Connell and the Rottnest Foundation Chairman Jeff King all made speeches regarding the partnership.