Home' Traveller : Scoop Traveller WA 019 Contents 46 Scoop Traveller December-June 2011
scoop.com.au Explore WA
4WD expert Nick Underwood suggests some south coast locales at which to
hear the crunch and squeak of sand under your tyres.
The coast is where it’s at for 4WD-ing in summer. While other travellers
scoot along at highway speeds, stopping only for food and fuel, the
off-roaders and soft-roaders take advantage of the easy access coastline.
Unlike in, say, Victoria, most WA beaches out of the city are accessible by
4WD. And the rewards are big: the south coast from Walpole to Israelite
Bay contains some of the most amazing coastal landscape in Australia.
At the southernmost end of D’Entrecasteaux National Park near
Walpole, a sand track delivers you to the entrance to Broke Inlet – the
perfect spot for beach fishing or chasing bream in the quiet waters.
Heading east along coastal tracks gets you to places like Rame Head out of
Peaceful Bay, Parry Beach and West Cape Howe – the southernmost point
of mainland Western Australia. East of Albany near Bremer Bay there’s
the wonderful biodiversity of Fitzgerald National Park, fringed by
deserted beaches. Past Esperance there are the stunning beaches of
Cape Le Grand and Cape Arid national parks.
To travel these south-coast tracks and beaches you need to lower
your tyre pressure – don’t forget the compressor and a tyre gauge for
when it comes time to reinflate them.
I would also recommend rated recovery points on your vehicle, plus
shovel, snatch strap and shackles in your kit. Travelling with another
vehicle is a good safety measure.
Apart from that all you need is your fishing gear, bathers, a
camera and a sense of adventure. To find your way along the south
coast, grab a copy of 4WD Days on the South Coast of WA, from 4WD
shops, camping stores and map shops).
FROM LEFT Traverse soft terrain
to the best spots; Hamersley Inlet in
Fitzgerald River National Park; Poison
Creek, Cape Arid National Park.
FOR LOVERS OF...
Albany | Try the King and Kalgan Rivers.
Walpole | The Walpole estuary is a launching point for a longer trip.
You can access the Deep River and the Frankland River from there.
Extra tips Novices could give paddling a try on the lower section of the
Collie River in Bunbury, upstream on the Margaret River, and on the
Moore River north of Perth. Estuaries can get quite wind-chopped and
a bit dangerous if they’re big. Rivers can be safer.
Perth | The Swan River near Fremantle, the scenic stretch between
Bayswater and Middle Swan, and the upper section of the Canning
River near Thornlie are all good. The upper reaches of both rivers
generally have calmer water and more bird life.
Mandurah |You can get at least 10km of continuous paddling on the
Murray and Serpentine rivers. The Serpentine, which runs into the
estuary, usually has more birds.
Augusta | There’s 25km of flat stretch on the Blackwood between Warner
Glen Bridge and Augusta. There’s another good stretch near Sue’s Bridge.
Canoeing and kayaking
Don’t look for rapid-riding thrills in the first part of the year. There is a bit of
white water on Wellington Dam on the Collie River until March, but thrill-seekers
are best shifting their thoughts to social, scenic paddling until the rains hit again
around June. Terry Bolland from Canoeing Down Under shares some tips:
Paddling at Lilac
Links Archive Scoop Traveller WA 018 Scoop Traveller WA 020 Navigation Previous Page Next Page