Happy trails await the adventurous traveller

Melanie CoramThe West Australian
Cape to Cape.
Camera IconCape to Cape. Credit: Picture: Lee Griffith

With more than 550 listings, Trails WA pairs travellers with adventures — an outdoors matchmaker of sorts.

Hit the Trails WA IOS app up for “trails near me” and a map with pins of places to walk, bike, paddle, snorkel or ride a horse will appear. Under each red pin is the name of the trail, the type of experience, time to complete it, length of trail and distance from me right now, degree of difficulty and a crowd-sourced rating.






Trails WA is the result of the Bibbulmun Track Foundation, the Munda Biddi Foundation and the Friends of the Cape to Cape Track joining forces more than a decade ago to find and list the top trails in the State. It evolved into Trails WA.

Linda Daniels, executive officer at Trails WA.
Camera IconLinda Daniels, executive officer at Trails WA. Credit: Picture: Iain Gillespie

Linda Daniels is executive director of the Bibbulmun foundation and also executive director of Trails WA.

She had noticed how under-promoted WA trails were, compared with places overseas and interstate.

“Just as a visitor in our own State, it was difficult to find consistently good information on trail opportunities around the place,” she says.

“You might go into a visitor information centre and they might have 20 different brochures all with varying degrees of information.

You might only have a day and not know which is the best one to do.

There followed a process of finding and publishing the Top Trails website in 2008. The committee for Trails WA was formed a few years later. Trails WA became incorporated in December 2017.

Ms Daniels is executive director of Trails WA and is the sole paid employee, aided by volunteers. She has seen the organisation, website and app take a big role in the WA outdoors industry. She also still works for the Bibbulmun foundation.

She would like to see adventurers, particularly hikers and other trail users, considered more in the State’s tourism decisions, especially given our remarkable scenery.

“We have seen, from a tourism point of view, destinations such as New Zealand and Tasmania, continually grow with the amount of visitors,” Ms Daniels says.

“And a lot of that is attributed to their fantastic trails.

“I think WA is missing an opportunity by not capitalising on the unique landscapes we have to offer. There’s a perception that to have excellent trails you have to have mountains and glaciers and lakes.

But we have karri forests and the amazing southern ocean coastline. We have incredible gorges up north. We have amazing landscapes that offer different opportunities.

As well as economic and public health arguments in favour of sanctioned tracks, Ms Daniels says environmental damage is contained and minimised because travellers are not carving their own way through the landscape.

“Governments want people to get out there and have more physical activity for the mental and health benefits of being outdoors,” she says. “A trail is the easiest way to access the outdoors and the best way to protect the rest of the environment because it’s in a managed way.”

Wellington National Park: Trails, forests and the Collie River are attractions.
Camera IconWellington National Park: Trails, forests and the Collie River are attractions.


The Collie area and Wellington National Park are an underrated resource, Ms Daniels says. There are great camp grounds with good walking and cycling trails all a few hours from Perth.


The Leave No Trace Centre for Outdoor Ethics aims to educate hikers and campers around the world about how to reduce impact on the natural world. Find further explanation of each of the seven Leave No Trace principles on the Trails WA website.

  1. Plan ahead and prepare
  2. Travel and camp on durable surfaces
  3. Dispose of waste properly
  4. Leave what you find
  5. Minimise campfire impacts
  6. Respect wildlife
  7. Be considerate of your hosts and other visitors.

Trails WA also adds a rule crucial to the health of the South West region of the State.

  • Help STOP the spread of Phytophthora Dieback — every step counts.

Head to trailswa.com.au or download the Trails WA app for IOS.

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