Lake Clifton and the Yalgorup National Park was part of the traditional lands of a man called Galyat (Calyute). His traditional lands stretched all the way from Mandjoogoordap around the Harvey Estuary and to Lake Clifton. Galyat was a strong old leader who became a familiar face to the early settlers of the Swan River Colony.
Noongar people continued to use and camp in the area around Lake Clifton for many years. This shallow and salty lake was a place where it was always possible to catch food and was a convenient stopping place for people travelling along the old paths between the Swan River, Mandurup and the Leschenault Inlet further south. In 2003 Joe Walley talked about the significance of the thrombolites to the Noongar traditional owners:
‘In my language it is called the Wagyl shell, the shell of old Marja, the Wagyl that came through from the history after laying her little ones there. As they wandered down they went through south and some went east and created the rivers. When she had lost them she went from the Estuary in through and came up here, which is now known as … Lake Clifton.’