Butler Pedalos

The weather was cruel to Robert and Christine Pitchford when they opened their new pedal boat fun business last week in Butler, which is part of Wanneroo, though North of Joondalup.

Drought-ridden, sunny, Perth rained them out for four days, so yesterday was the true start of their business. However, Rob says that as long as they can build the business by Summertime (which is April to June here), they will be happy. I’m sure they will be glad of the canopy over each boat to keep the sun off, long before then.
Brampton Park, Butler, Wanneroo, PerthBrampton Park has three artificial lakes. Butler is a new area, and a new area needs character after the bulldozers have done their work. I suspect the three lakes were swamps before the bulldozers scooped them out. The lakes are lined with concrete.

Update: The the deepest point in this lake is 5 metres (about five and a half yards.) So the lakes always existed and are only partly artificial.

Returning customers in pedal boatBrampton Park has children’s swings and slides and things, but one thing that other parks don’t have is pedal boats. In fact if you want to hire a boat anywhere else in Perth it is likely to cost you over $100.

Judging by the broad grins on the boy’s faces these sailors thoroughly enjoyed their trip. Unfortunately once I shrink the picture for my blog, you can’t see the grins.

Robert waits for the sailors to landOn the left Robert is waiting to help the returning travelers to land. You can see the gaudy life-jackets on the children. Jackets are available to anybody who wants them.

I suppose the adult sizes are there because of some stupid regulation. I don’t believe that you could capsize one of these boats, and the only way for a child to fall in is to try to balance while walking round the side of the boat. Even if adults tried the same stupid trick, they could cheat with one hand on the canopy.

Robert moors the boat.The children in the photo on the right are still wearing their colorful safety vests, while Robert moors the boat.

Putting away the life jacketsAnd on the left, Robert is putting away the colorful vests.

One kid is more interested in the camera than in the vest he has just taken off, and I think the other could be planning mischief that might get him wet.

Final touches to packing lifejackets. On the right, only one kid is still curious about packing away the life jackets. You can see how cheap a pedal boat trip really is.

Two more navigatorsYou have seen children enjoying the ride. On the left are some adults with the man pedaling energetically.

So what ages can truly enjoy the ride? Well, Robert says from 9 till 90, but adults must supervise children.

As an elder myself I’m more interested in the upper age limit. What would happen if I was tired out and couldn’t pedal any further? Would I be swept away by the current? There is no current. It is just the middle lake in the park. I can rest for as long as I like, then carry on pedaling.

Birthday GirlOn the right you can see one lady who is not afraid to try. She told Robert that it was her 82nd birthday, and the she was planning to come back with her granddaughter to pedal around the lake.

Why are there harsh shadows? Well, the weather went from rain to a cloudless sky yesterday, making the light very unflattering for portraits. So instead of being cruel to Robert, it was cruel to this active elder’s appearance.

One thing that I like about being an elder is that I no longer need to impress anybody. Linden Lea could have been written about modern retirees.

I do not dread a peevish master
Though no man may heed my frowns
For I be free to go abroad
Or take again my homeward road
To where, for me, the apple tree 
Do lean down low, in Linden Lea.


I knew I had forgotten something. How to get there.

If you are in the center of Perth, go into the underground station at point 4 on the little map at


Go to the underground station and take the train labelled “Butler”. A train labelled “Currambine” will terminate a couple of stations too soon. That is the train North. On the other side of the platform is the train South to Mandurah.

In Butler, take the 483 bus and ask the driver to let you off at the stop after Butler Primary School. In case he forgets, keep your eye to the right and you’ll see the park sign in the photo at the top of this post. You’ll know that you’ve overshot your stop, and the bus will turn immediately after Brampton park. Get off at the next stop. The stop for your return trip is just across Brampton Avenue from the park sign. If you’re driving, find Brampton Park on the map or your GPS.

If you have a GPS on your mobile, navigate to Latitude 31.647462 Longitude 115.699802 or to Brampton Avenue, Butler.

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