After having a better nights sleep with less coughing, I awoke my throat feeling great but my body very weary. I made Mr D & I some quick porridge & a cuppa. For Mr D – a Robert Timms Espresso coffee bag. In hindsight I should of dumped two coffee bags in to give him a double espresso shot. He was still recovering from yesterday & his shoulder was really sore from his backpack. I winced when I put on mine. I had very sore, red spots on the hips & shoulders where my backpack sits. It was incredibly painful to walk again with the backpack & I kept lifting the pack up off my hips but it would only slide back down again.
We set off just after 8am – an easy start walking on gravel track pass Torpedo Rocks. There I took the option of following the C2C walking on sand all the way along Smiths Beach must of been at least 2kms & was tough going, sinking into the sand with every step. Mr D avoided the sand & took off above the beach on another track that joins up halfway along the beach. Well I got all the way to the end & no Mr D in sight. I waited & waited…. he eventually caught up sweating & cursing his bad decision, “Bloody hell! I won’t be doing that again! That track took me the long way, up & down bloody sand dunes! And I had to walk half the bloody beach anyway! I’m exhausted now!” 😩
On we pressed through Smiths Point & some tough going scrambling & climbing over boulders & rocks up & down arduous hills that exhausted us further. I stopped at one point to drop everything & change into my shorts. It was warming up to the point of being too hot. I lost the track as so many tracks intersect & the markers are sparse & far between. Mr D was somewhere far ahead. Luckily I retraced my steps & found the track. Scary to think how easily I can get lost.
We climbed up a bunch of stairs that got a “bloody hell! Who put these steps here?!!” From tired Mr D. At the top there was a bench seat to sit on, catch our breaths & look out at the Canal Rocks & the surf crashing into them. Then we had another difficult section up & up rocks, stones & tree roots & down & down the other side. I waited again as I was well in front. Mr D finally caught up not amused at all. He goes, “Thanks for racing off! I bloody tripped & fell crashing into some branches! One branch was almost going to poke me in the eye. I turned & it got me on the head! I’m wounded! My thigh is badly bruised! My head hurts!” My poor wounded trooper 😕. Later I inspected his head to find a small wound with a bit of dried blood. Yep, he will survive! On we pressed still not covering much distance & most of the morning gone.
Today was 20kms but Mr D’s Garmin said we had done 22.5kms. And he had made a rookie mistake in not checking the next days walk & ensuring he had enough water. After the first 5kms, there is no water source until we get to the campgrounds. He only carried two 600ml Powerade bottles of water & had already finished one so was getting very concerned at this stage. Just before Injidup Beach some fishermen came along & one of them offered Mr D a bottle of water. He dropped his pack & clambered up the hill to the guys car in the carpark & returned relieved with another water bottle. I spoke to 2 other fishermen, one goes “You doing the whole C2C in one go?!” I said yes I planned to. He goes “Well, good luck!” Yep he thinks I’m crazy.
Ben trudged pass on his way onto the beach having already caught up to us. But he missed the turn off along the beach & had an extra effort in going up a huge sand dune & finding his way back onto the track. More beach walking & the surfers were out catching the waves. I would stop, catch my breath & watch them getting dunked into the ocean, laugh then continue. Hmmmmmm, they were probably laughing at me too!
We stopped just off the beach at a seat for lunch at 12.15pm. We still had over 10kms to go, we felt so miserable & defeated! At least the next 8kms were relatively easy on a wide 4WD track. But it was sandy & hilly & monotonous. There was great spots under trees that we just wanted to stop & put up the tent, call it a day, but no water! We were eventually spat out onto the beach again & crossed Quininup Brook which was well receded back from the ocean so easy to cross over sand. But a high tide of water came rushing up & I wasn’t quick enough to avoid the water as it washed over my boots & socks. Just great! I had wet feet & there was another big sand dune to go up! I plonked down on that sand dune going “No more walking today!” But had to coax myself to get back up & continue now with sand all over my legs & arms. The track was getting eaten up by the coastal vegetation as I battled my way through bushes. Most of the track is exposed to everything all the elements including the relentless sun that constantly beats down heating my face & exposed skin. It zaps my energy. I was no engeriser battery bunny 🐰.
We spotted Ben way ahead on the track & we had 3 odd more kms to go, inland through more dense vegetation & narrow sand tracks. I spotted my second Kangaroo here. I see more of them in suburbia. At 4.30pm we stumbled into camp 5 minutes after Ben had arrived. What relief to stop finally! Not much light left, so we set up our tent which we have never used before now. Mr D got this ultra light 600gm hiking tent 2 years ago, we finally were using it! Hence we didn’t set it up nicely & we looked like amateurs compared to Ben. He had an Hyperlite tent & backpack & all the expensive good stuff. We sat over dinner with a couple of cups of red vino from Mr D’s goon bag & chatted. Ben is from Brisbane & loves hiking & picks a trail to do each year for 2 weeks. He was fast regretting his pick this time & like us, was not enjoying the C2C. Found it very hard going. The book not very informative. Lack of campsites & water supplies. Yep, we were doing it tough all right & I have no idea how people do this whole track in 6 or 7 days! I think we have met our match with this track & it may break us all☹️. Ben’s backpack weighs a staggering 30kgs with 8 kgs in camera equipment alone!
We retired to bed at 8pm. We were so exhausted & couldn’t think anymore. Tucked up in my warm sleeping bag inside the tent felt soooo good 😊. The stars in the sky were brilliant. The breeze cool. Lucky for us it wasn’t too windy or wet. The lack of expertise in setting up the tent, we would of been blown away or floating on a big puddle of water.
About the author AmblingRose
We are keen hikers based in Perth, Western Australia. We have hiked 7 New Zealand multi-day walk trails, the 800km Camino Frances in Spain, the Cape to Cape in WA, Mount Kinabalu in Borneo, Malaysia. We have hiked sections of the 1003 km Bibbulmun Track in WA with plans to complete an end to end this year in Spring, 2019.
Honeymoon Pool to Balingup
Chichester Range Camel Trail