West Cape Howe National Park

We’ve been to amazing Albany quite a few times, so imagine our surprise when we went for a drive along Lower Denmark road and stumbled into this magnificent park. In Western Australia we are really spoilt for choice when it comes to national parks.

West Cape Howe protects 35 square kilometres of rugged southern coastline. An unsealed road leads from the main entrance at Torbay Hill down to Shelley Beach – a very scenic route. There are various other tracks in the park, but they are accessible only to 4WD vehicles.

The cliffs at Shelley Beach attract many rock climbers and hang gliders. From the experts I hear that no commercial activity is allowed in the park without the relevant CALM permit. That includes tandem flights and teaching.

On our visit there was no hang gliding activity, so we turned our attention inland. We followed a small footpath up the hill, only to discover that we found ourselves (once again) on a part of the Bibbulmun track.

On our way to the top we came across a hiker who walked the Bibbulmun all the way from Collie. He was the picture of peacefulness eating his lunch at the foot of Bruce Tarbotton Memorial Walk. Following his advice we pushed on a little further to the top of one of the sandstone cliffs. The panoramic view of Shelley Beach made this short walk well worth it.

What made this picturesque spot even more special is that there are a few campsites right next to the beach. Other facilities in the park are toilets and barbeques.  More photos.