This trek has two trek destinations in one. The trek starts from Overlander Roadhouse to Steep Point
via the main junction at the airstrip. After returning back down to this main junction, the trek then heads towards the second trek destination which is Crayfish Bay.
Although known to most as Steep Point
, the point itself is located at the western tip of the peninsula. The official name for the area is Edel Land and soon it will become known as Edel Land National park. The very sandy track to the point tends to follow the eastern side of the peninsular. Steep Point
gives the traveller the opportunity to see a pristine environment and enjoy superb ocean vistas from beaches, bays and high cliff tops. Views from Cloughs Bar to Steep Point
include secluded bays, salt pans or birradas, scrub covered dunes, glimpses of Dirk Hartog Island and across the bay to the Peron Peninsula. If you are keen to fish, there are plenty of opportunities to catch a big fish from the beach or the rocks. You can camp near beaches in a tranquil bay and explore some fascinating and rigged sand dune country. You will also find many opportunities for some serious and challenging 4WDriving.
On the western side of the Steep Point
area are the Zuytdorp Cliffs (pronounced Zurtoff), these in places
are up to 170 metres high. The Indian Ocean smashing against these cliffs provides sightseers with fantastic photography opportunities at almost every turn. On the eastern side (Shark Bay side) are numerous sandy beaches, where one can see fish swimming in the shallows or rock pools. From a fishing point of view, Steep Point
itself, is arguably the best rock fishing platform in Australia
, with the main catch being mackerel and snapper.
How to Use this Trek Note
Click the "Map" tab below to see the route we've provided. Icons on the map are the POIs you'll need for navigation purposes. Be sure to check the list of Nearby Places
on each POI page.
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The terrain is rugged sand dune country and in places
is very sandy and the risk of getting bogged is high. In places
tracks are overgrown, vehicle scratching will occur.
As you are leaving Cloughs Bar and heading towards Steep Point
, the very first sand dune is probably the most difficult. It’s often very soft and seems to go forever and many people have had to reverse all the way to the bottom and start again. You will experience superb views as you slowly make your way to the point. The track is self made and wanders left and right, average driving speed is around 15 to 20 kph.
As you approach the point, the track leaves the tranquil bay on the northern side of the peninsula and heads for the steep cliffs facing the Indian Ocean, the cliffs are very high and plummet almost vertically into the ocean, the views are breath taking. Take special care here, the cliffs are dangerous and falling off will result in almost certain death. This is not an exaggeration, the cliffs are dangerous, there are no barriers or signs and sections could break off without warning. Keep a very close watch on any children. The main track heads north passed the light house and about fifty metres passed the light house it forks. About a hundred metres along the left fork you come to the most western point of the Australian main land, people have built dozens and dozens of rock cairns to commemorate their visit.
The right fork leads down to the rock fishing platforms. Here up to 50 people camp and using lures or baits to catch fish. Spanish Mackerel are the most often sought after fish. Steep Point
is one of those rare places
where land based anglers can target large pelagic fish. Some fisherman use helium filled balloons and use the prevailing breeze to take their baits 100 to 150 metres out to sea. If intending to fish, talk to fisherman there about what spots are available. Each spot
is closely guarded and the best spots are taken in a pecking order of who has been fishing the area the longest at that time. You will find most of the fishermen are helpful. Also note they leave their fishing gear on the rocks, don’t touch any of it because it could be worth many hundreds of dollars.
Evidence of aboriginal occupation has been found going back to around 30,000 years.
Dirk Hartog was the first recorded explorer to visit the region, it was in 1616. He was followed by others including de Vlamingh in 1697, Dampier, who named Shark Bay, in 1699, St. Alouaran in 1772, Baudin in 1801 and 1803, De Freycinet in 1818, King in 1822, Grey in 1839 and Denham in 1858.