Steep Point, Western Australia is the most Western point of the Australian Mainland. It is part of the Shark Bay World Heritage Site and the Edal Land National Park.
Steep Point can only be accessed by 4WD or boat and is extremely remote. You will need to take along at least 10ltrs of water per person per day, a full tank of fuel and enough food to last longer than you plan to stay. If there is a lot of rain they will close the roads and you might have to stay a little longer than you expected. The Point is situated approximately 200km off the North West Coastal Highway and the closest fuel station is the Overland Roadhouse, which is situated on the North West Coastal Highway near the turn off to Shark Bay Road.
We had actually planned on going to Albany for the weekend, but the thought of going to a place even colder than home just wasn't appealing. Stu flew in from work and we decided north was the only way to go, I was so happy to say the least.
So Wednesday morning we packed the car and headed north in pursuit of warm weather and sunshine. We arrived in Geraldton at about 4pm and decided to call it a night, treating ourselves to the Sails Motel, as it was going to be the last shower we would have for a few days. The staff were lovely there, the room was clean and the bed was pretty comfy. In the early hours of the morning we were reminded of why we never stay in Motels. The noise always gets to us and the incredibly loud snoring coming from the room next door was enough to wake us both up and high tail out of there, looking forward to the quietness of the bush.
Arriving at Overland Roadhouse, approx 280km from Geraldton we filled up the car and headed down Shark Bay Road. We pulled up at the Steep Point turn off just as the sun was breaking the horizon. There is something really magical about watching the sun rise over the deserted landscape, not another soul in sight just us and nature. We both immediately felt relaxed.
One thing we didn't realise is you have to book if you want a camp site at Steep Point. There is a contact number for the ranger on the sign (08 99483993) at the turn off but they didn't open until 9:00am so we just thought we would try our luck and head in anyway.
The road from the highway to the entrance of Steep Point wasn't that bad, thanks to the grader that was fixing the road for us as we drove through. But when you get to the point you are entering 4WD territory. It is an absolute must to let your tyres down, they recommend no more than 20psi. But if you want a comfy ride go down to 18psi. This made the world of difference for us in the corrugation.
As we drove on we went over dunes and around bends and I'm pretty sure our jaws hit the floor. Every turn we made we would discover something different and more beautiful constantly saying "wow"
After about two to three hours of driving the deep sandy and corrugated track we made it to the Rangers Station. The Ranger was a really lovely lady and she had the cutest little dog who came over to inspect the car then rolled on his back for a scratch. They were pretty booked up but she had an available spot at a site called 'Blackies' for one night. The Ranger explained a few things about what tracks to go down and what to avoid and let us know the blow holes were going off at the moment because of the huge swell. She explained that we should not go down the track between Nor 6 and Thunder Bay because it is s@#% and as we already had a dent in the car, we decided to take her excellent advice. The last bit of advice she had was to stay away from the edge on the cliffs. Many people have been seriously injured or have died being swept over by unpredictable waves.
Cost to Camp: $7.50 per person per night as well as the National Park entry Fee which is $12 per vehicle. We have the Annual Parks Pass for Western Australia it costs $88 for the year and we would highly recommend it, if you are doing a bit of traveling. We got ours when we went to Esperance in January and it paid for it self on that trip.
When we pulled up to our site we were blown away!! It was right on the beach but sheltered from the wind and the water was that beautiful blue that makes you want to just jump in. Instead of setting up we decided to go to the point first and have a look around.
The actual Steep Point is another jaw dropping site to see. As we pulled up we saw a whale in the distance and the ocean was this incredible bright blue colour. The fishing would be amazing and is the reason so many people go to Steep Point. We then went down to the 'Oven', easy to see where it got its name, completely sheltered from the wind it was so warm.
We both decided it was time to call it a day and headed back to our camp site. After setting up we explored our little part of paradise and Stu did a bit of fishing, determined to catch me a fish even though we had forgotten bait.
That night was the most peaceful nights sleep we have both had in a long time. All of our worries faded away with the sound of the waves lapping the shore.
I woke to watch the most beautiful sunrise over the ocean.
After packing up and taking a few more photos we headed to Thunder Bay to see the Blow Holes. The swell was about 6 metres and the tide was quite high so the Blow Holes were going off. We sent the drone out to see what we couldn't and the footage we got was incredible. Looking out over the vast ocean I saw a big splash and realised there was a pod of whales. They were jumping out of the water and crashing down making huge splashes. We have never seen this before and it was a truly memorable experience.
We followed the track out and stopped in a few more bays along the way each of them as beautiful as the next. We had lunch at False Entrance Beach and would defiantly NOT recommend swimming there. The swell was massive and the currents were all over the place, but it was pretty cool to watch. The tide started to come in and we didn't want to get stuck on the beach so we headed off. This took up most of the day and we wanted to get to Francois Peron National Park before the sun went down, so we said good bye to Edal Land National Park and got back onto Shark Bay Road after pumping our tyres up.
There was a lot more to see there so we will definitely be heading back soon to explore this amazing place.
List of things you should not forget:
- Full tank of fuel
- At least 10 Litres of water per person per day
- Tyre pressure gauge and air compressor
- Plenty of food
- Fishing equipment (Line fishing only no spear fishing allowed)
- Cooking equipment (No camp fires allowed)
- Cash for park fees (or valid park pass) and camping fees
- Book ahead of time if you want to camp
- Toilet Paper