FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
MARGARET RIVER, THE CAPE TO CAPE & THE GREATER SOUTHWEST
Where is the Cape to Cape?
The Cape to Cape is a 135 km long stretch of coastal north-south trail from one end of the Leeuwin Naturaliste National Park to the other. In Spring, the track is alive with native wildflowers and the Indian Ocean hosts migrating whales. Google it!!!!
The track is typically seen to start at the Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse and end at the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse or vice versa, depending on the direction you are travelling. It follows quite closely the Leeuwin Naturaliste Ridge and covers a diversity of sandy coastal terrains, coastal heath, limestone outcrops and granite paths, beaches, coastal woodlands, and old Karri and Marri forest.
How difficult is the track?
It is a magic walk that anyone with moderate fitness can do given enough time. There are some sections that are moderate to strenuous – with some hilly parts going up and down the ridge but generally it’s moderate and we are there to make sure that you do it at your own pace.
Beaches are the challenge for most people but (unless requested) we tend to walk in a north-south direction so that by the time you get to the long beaches, your body is already pumping for it!
Is there a lot of beach walking (i.e. walking on sand)?
When you walk the whole track, there is a total of approximately 25 km of sandy beach, the longest of which is 7 km. Sometimes the wetter areas are firm and easy to walk on, often the sand is loose and fine well, like a beach…just think of it as a great glutes workout with incredible views of turquoise coloured ocean.
You can take your time, maybe slip off your boots and enjoy the ocean, the sand between your toes and the tranquillity – there is rarely anyone around and the beaches are stunning!
How much am I expected to carry each day?
You can carry as much as you like but you only really need to carry a small day pack with water, the lunches we give you, and any personal items you would like to carry like camera and rain weather gear, for example. You probably would not need to carry more than 4kg - but it is up to you!
How do we get to Margaret River?
Margaret River is 290 km southwest of Perth. Most people drive the 3-hour journey and stop to check out the Busselton Jetty along the way. It’s an easy drive – pretty much a straight all the way with well sign-posted directions all along…all in English.
If you are coming on one of our multi-day walking tours then we will be picking you up and dropping you off, unless pre-arranged, so you can just sit back and enjoy the ride…but Google it so you can get an idea of where it sits on the WA coast.
You can also catch local public transport. There are two coach companies Southwest Coaches and TransWA and they both take about the same amount of time to get down and cost about the same too, about $50. Please check their timetables
Where is the Fitzgerald River National Park?
The Fitzgerald River National Park sits within the UNESCO listed Fitzgerald Biosphere and is a natural heritage site.
It is approximately 460 Km (5-6 hours) south-east of Perth between Albany & Esperance.
What is the terrain like?
There are two main trails in the Fitzgerald River National Park: the Hakea and the Mamang trails. They are both coastal trails spanning a variety of coastal heath, beach, coastal scrub and some woodlands.
What if I'm a slow walker?
Our aim is for you to spend time in nature reconnecting and exploring the beauty of the places we walk. So, you need to walk at a pace that is suitable to you and we support you to do just that. In a group people will always walk at different paces, you can walk at your own pace and we’ll make sure nobody gets left behind!
What if I need a day off?
We have had occasions when people have felt they needed time off to recover. You can do that by staying at the accommodation and relaxing, or heading into town to sit at a cafe. There are always ways to support you, whatever you need to do.
What happens if I am injured or sick?
All our guides have first aid training and some remote wilderness first aid to treat minor injuries. If there is an injury and you need to come off the track we carry a satellite phone and will call for emergency services. If you are sick we will call for someone to come and take you off the track and drive you back to our accommodation.
How much walking do we do each day?
We walk between 15 to 24 kms a day. Usually no more than 5 - 6 hours with plenty of breaks for snacks, water and lunch.
Are there snakes or other dangerous wildlife?
We have many poisonous snakes in Australia and they do not generally mind us walking through their natural habitat and they are usually very shy and keep well away from us. From time to time we see kangaroos, whales, dolphins, foxes, different lizards, and may birds and insects, like flies… none of them are dangerous … the flies are a pest sometimes but do no real harm!
What time of the year is the best to see wildflowers?
The wildflower season starts in late August when we can start to see a few species starting to flower. The season really kicks off in September with many species flowering then. The season goes through to the middle of November. In the Fitzgerald River it starts a little later: half way through September.
There are many local orchids that flower seasonally, so we can find them from April right through to November.