01.01.2016 Exercise

Hike in comfort on the Bibbulmun

Comfort will be a welcome feature in a new initiative for WA's iconic Bibbulmun Track in 2016.

Walkers will now be able to enjoy five new guided tours on different sections of the route, in addition to the Best of the Bibbulmun tours in May and September.

The new Town to Town tours allow completion of a whole section of the Track with accommodation, meals and transport to and from the track provided. No more heavy packs or camping out!.

The Bibbulmun Track in Western Australia, listed by National Geographic as one of the world's 20 Top Trails, stretches 1000kms from Kalamunda in the Perth Hills to Albany on the south coast passing through nine rural towns along the way. From giant boulders, to magnificent ancient forests, coastal heathlands and spectacular views, the Track passes through some of the most diverse and unique areas of Australia's South West.

The Town to Town tours range from four to nine day walks along five different sections - Albany to Denmark, Pemberton to Northcliffe, Walpole to Denmark, Northcliffe to Walpole and Collie to Balingup.

While the level of difficulty varies from tour to tour, each is designed to be achievable for those with a moderate level of fitness with plenty of opportunities to rest and take in the scenery along the way. Participants walk with only a small daypack and a private air-conditioned bus provides transport to and from the Track each day. Each evening the group returns to comfortable accommodation in a nearby town to relax and enjoy the local fare. Homemade meals, accommodation, transport to and from Perth and professional guides are all-inclusive in the tour prices.

Proceeds from the tours go straight back into the ongoing maintenance of the Track to ensure its long-term sustainability.

New guided Town to Town tours include:

Albany to Denmark
April 2-8 2016.
Days: 7 day tour, 5 days walking.
This stretch follows the magnificent southern coastline from Albany to Denmark.

Pemberton to Northcliffe
April 10-13, 2016
Days: 4 day tour, 4 days walking.
Escape to the forest! Turn up your face to the mighty karri trees, close your eyes and you may hear the chanting of long ago as you breathe the deep earthy smells of the forest.

Walpole to Denmark
April 17-25, 2016:
Days: 9 day tour, 7.5 days walking.
This section holds its own as the most scenic and varied section of the Bibbulmun Track. It takes in majestic forests, deserted beaches, magnificent bays and spectacular cliffs. You'll visit the Valley of the Giants near Walpole and see the beautiful rock formations and tranquil waters of Greens Pool and Elephant Rocks near Denmark with many in between.

Northcliffe to Walpole
May 14-22, 2016
Days: 9 day tour, 8.5 days walking.
This section offers some of the most diverse walking experiences in Australia with towering Karri forest, pristine rivers, grasslands, wetlands, beaches and dramatic coastal cliffs.

Collie to Balingup
September 19-23, 2016
Days: 5 day tour, 4.5 days walking.
Only a few hours' drive from Perth, the Bibbulmun Track between Collie and Balingup offers some excellent walking and passes through one of the best stands of virgin jarrah forest in the South West.

Contact the Bibbulmun Track Foundation for more details: Call (08) 9481 0551, email events@bibbulmuntrack.org.au or visit www.bibbulmuntrack.org.au to download a dossier and booking form.

Margaret Evans

Margaret Evans has a background in teaching, journalism and publishing. She is the editor of NOVA Holistic Journal.