Margaret River: The river

I was visiting the south west of the state again recently and, as usual, had a wonderful time. I always enjoy a wander through the main street of Margaret River when I’m down there and this time was no different.

DSCN1335What was different this time though was that I took particular note of the river itself.

When you mention Margaret River in the south west of Western Australia most people immediately think of the picturesque country town with it’s world class surfing beaches or of the wineries in the region or the gourmet food that the area is renowned for, but nobody really thinks of the river that the town sits on.

So I did a little bit of research. The Margaret River is believed to be named after Margaret Whicher or Whyche who, depending on your source of reference, seems to have been either a friend or a cousin of John Bussell, an early settler and explorer of the area.

The river rises in the Whicher ranges and merges with the Indian Ocean 65km away near Cape Mentelle.

In the summer the picturesque riverbank as you enter the town is teeming with visitors, when I was there a few days ago, with the constant threat of rain and the thunderstorm that had passed over a couple of hours earlier the picnic grounds were rather empty and one lone youngster was playing in playground.

But even in that weather it was a very picturesque spot. It’s also the beginning of the 13.5km rails to trails walking/cycling track that takes you north as far as Cowaramup. It’s on my list for the next time I’m down there.

It’s also worth taking a drive to the mouth of the Margaret river near Prevelly, a beautiful coastline with magnificent surfing beaches where you can watch the waves in contemplation, enjoy a picnic on the beach in the nicer weather or maybe take the dog for a walk up the river.









A Whole Heap of Steps and a Wandering Mind.

Ok, my boots and I have got past first base. We took our first walk together last weekend and we certainly bonded. We didn’t rub each other up the wrong way and we came back feeling very smug with ourselves, no one else we saw were half as compatible. We’ve decided we suit each other quite nicely and will enjoy our time together.

We’ve also discovered a couple of added bonuses to the training that we’re doing, at least I have.

You’ll remember that I’ve mentioned the coastal path that I take my walks on (well you will if you’ve been taking any notice of what I’ve been writing lately) anyway, I’ve found a better training track. This one is only a few minutes from home and I cannot believe that I’ve lived here for 7 years and haven’t found it before now. It’s an area of open bushland with a walking trail around and through it and the best bit, as far as I’m concerned, is that it has two sets of steps.

Going down – that’s the easy part.

There are over 120 steps that I need to go down and then back up. The first time I tried it I needed to stop twice on the way up, to catch my breath and explain to my thighs that they really will get to enjoy this and it’s doing them good. They didn’t seem convinced and in protest continued to complain for some minutes. The intention, though, is to get further each time before the complaining begins and eventually be able to go up and down a couple of times without needing to stop.

What goes down must go back up – including me!

The beauty of this discovery is that now I don’t have to get in the car and drive before I can walk, now I just step outside my front door and within a few minutes I’m surrounded by the peace and quiet of this wonderful bushland.

The second bonus is that all of this walking in such a serene and peaceful environment, with only the occasional dog and his walker as a distraction, allows the mind to wander. The stress of the working week gradually trickles away and my mind is able to let go and enjoy the freedom.

So my decision to go on this trek is already paying dividends, who knows what inspiration will flow from that released mind.