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Excursion difficulty

by grandmaR Online Now Feb 14, 2012 at 2:31 PM

I have booked an excursion from Geraldton (which is a tender port) to the Kalbarri National Park. This excursion is listed as Moderate difficulty. I usually stick with the Easy ones because walking is difficult for me. (Not impossible - just difficult). But there were no Easy ones listed for this port. This is what the description says --- I do not see any particular exertion - what is going to be the problem. Is the 'exploring' of the park to be done on foot? If so, could my granddaughter go and leave me at the trailhead?

Board your air-conditioned bus and get ready for a day-long journey ...
Travel north from Geraldton, passing the old mining town of Northampton and the
Principality of Hutt River, Australia's smallest micronation. Pause for a
refined morning tea as you enter the park at Hawk's Head Lookout....

Continue on your journey exploring Kalbarri National Park. View dramatic gorges
carved from the landscape by the Murchison River. See the park's steep ocean
cliffs and rock formations including Pot Alley, Natural Bridge and Island Rock.
Gaze across the rolling sand plains and take in the diversity and extent of
wildflowers during winter months, when species like banksias, grevillias,
kangaroo paws and featherflowers spring to life.

After your tour, you'll stop for a hearty lunch at the Black Rock Restaurant in
Kalbarri. ... Then, enjoy free time to explore the charming streets of
Kalbarri. Your return route passes the ruins of the historic Lynton Convict
Hiring Station.

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8 Answers
  • qaminari's Profile Photo

    Re: Excursion difficulty

    by qaminari Online Now Feb 14, 2012 at 5:07 PM

    Yes, this tour involves a walk in the national park, which is why they tell you to wear comfortable shoes, see pocruises.com.au/findacruise...
    I wish the people who write these descriptions would provide a proper detailed account of what is actually involved, in addition to the sales blurb: it is very dangerous not to (I once went on an outing that also mentioned only starting and finishing by coach and neglected to mention the 2-hour jungle walk in between, during which I managed to fall in a stream and a volcano..)
    With this one, it isn't possible to tell whether the walk is circular or not, and it could be that the coach drops the group in one place and picks it up in another. You will have to find out from the organisers, or at the latest, when you stop for "morning tea". If by any chance the walking group doesn't come back to the park entrance, you might have to arrange for a taxi from there to the Black Rock Restaurant to meet up with them for lunch. Alternatively, they might let you stay with the coach.

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  • grandmaR's Profile Photo

    Re: Excursion difficulty

    by grandmaR Online Now Feb 14, 2012 at 5:37 PM

    It depends on how long the walk is and how fast they do it as to whether I can do it or not. I might be able to manage a quarter mile at a fairly slow pace so I could stop and sit down and rest. If it was more than that, I wouldn't be able to do it without (irritatingly) slowing everyone down. Normally if I don't want to do some part of an excursion, they usually let me stay on the bus. They may not WANT to, but usually I can do that. I've done it in Berlin (twice on the same excursion which was 13 hours) and Guayaquil (which was just too hot), and Curacao (where I had a vertigo attack in the middle of the excursion).

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  • CatherineReichardt's Profile Photo

    Re: Excursion difficulty

    by CatherineReichardt Online Now Feb 15, 2012 at 3:10 AM

    Hi
    The advice above about contacting the tour operator is a good one.
    Given your clarification on your limits, I would advise that this is probably beyond your physical capability.
    What time of year are you planning to visit? The reason that I ask is because there isn't a lot of shade in Kalbarri, and given that you've previously found heat a problem, this is also a limiting factor that you would be wise to consider.
    Regards
    Cathy

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  • grandmaR's Profile Photo

    Re: Excursion difficulty

    by grandmaR Online Now Feb 15, 2012 at 10:33 AM

    We will be there in July which will be winter. I'm hoping it won't be too hot.

    Sometimes they say things are Moderate when it is something like snorkeling which is really easy for me (once I get to the water) as a float quite nicely and am a good swimmer - as long as the weight on my knees. So I will wait and see - I can re-book or change up to 24 hours beforehand.

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  • CatherineReichardt's Profile Photo

    Re: Excursion difficulty

    by CatherineReichardt Online Now Feb 15, 2012 at 10:56 AM

    Hi
    July is about as manageable as it gets temperature wise, so let's hope you get positive feedback from the organisers.
    Enjoy this wonderful part of the world ... scarcely a day goes by when I don't miss living in WA!
    Regards
    Cathy

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  • Re: Excursion difficulty

    by gerrypmac Online Now Feb 17, 2012 at 2:55 AM

    The kalbarri national Park has amazing views and not too far to walk from the carparks. I have done the main tourist walks.There are a few different locations off two different access roads, and all lookouts are not more than a few hundred metres.(unless you want to walk down steep grades from lookouts to the river below which most won't) People will be coming and going and you will be able to take your time and at your own pace.It is true that to see some of the best outlooks you have to climb across rock and narrow trails in some steep areas but this is not essential. The nature of the walks are not such that you can be left behind etc. The various walks to the respective lookouts are a little uneven and moderate slopes but doable for someone with moderate difficulties as you don't hav to sustain the effort for long at each of about 4 stops you will likely have to see the best features. Your grandaughter will have time to walk ahead to lookouts and come back a little and help you to the lookout etc or simply walk with you. It is a stunning location and you will have a great trip and your granddaughter will love it . best wishes

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  • Re: Excursion difficulty

    by gerrypmac Online Now Feb 17, 2012 at 3:08 AM

    I forgot to mention that the best stop you will have in the park has about 25 consecative steps at the start down from near the carpark (very wide and safe like any steps you normally encounter with handrail). Don't be put off with this as the 250 metre or so undulating walk is a must do and you can take your time. A great place.

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  • grandmaR's Profile Photo

    Re: Excursion difficulty

    by grandmaR Online Now Feb 17, 2012 at 6:56 AM

    Thank you SO much for this information.

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