The old Grimwade Settlement is a favourite free camping spot that will beckon you back again and again. It is 13km north east of Balingup, via Grimwade Road and Preston Road, adjacent to the Bibbulmun Track. It has a lovely large dam with camp sites on the bank and camping beside a huge pool on the Balingup Brook. Wonderful displays of wildflowers can be found along any of the walking trails in the area during wildflower season. Grimwade was a mill town, but all that is left of the old town site is some footings and scattered remnants. You can easily see where the houses once stood, with remnant gardens and fruit trees.
The triangular dam has a beach in one corner and a small timber jetty nearby. It is fed by a winter stream so the water is clean for most of the year. The ground slopes and it is not the best area to camp. The Grimwade Pool on Balingup Brook is clean and attractive, with nice water plants in the shallows, lots of little fish, and reeds on the far bank. There’s a small flat area suitable for tents which has been built up at the water’s edge. Here the pool has a gravelly bottom and is free of water plants, so is good for swimming.
There are numerous large, flat, accessible areas big enough to park a 4WD and the largest of caravans. Grimwade does not have any amenities so you need to be self-sufficient. Bring food and clean water, your own portable cooking fire (especially during the summer fire ban), and rubbish bags. There are no rubbish bins so please take your rubbish home with you.
From Balingup drive north on South Western Highway for 900 metres and turn right onto Grimwade Road. Continue on this road for 11.5 km. You’ll pass the Kirup-Grimwade Road T-junction at 9kms. Continue a further 2.5kms then there are 3 turnoffs into Grimwade on the left hand side of the road, but they are not signposted.
Remember that it is up to each one of us to leave these free campsites in pristine condition: “Tread lightly, take only pictures, leave only footprints, kill only time .”