Bob’s Track is a small 4WD track to the beach off Caves road in Karridale (just north of Hamelin Bay). It is one of the better known Boranup 4WD Track options, and is a lot of fun. Pack your fishing gear and wet a line on the magic beach, or just kick back at the end and soak it up. If you want more of tracks like this, check out Margaret River 4WD Tracks.
Finding Bob’s Track
Bob’s Track Boranup starts approximately 600 metres north of Bushby road, on the west side of Caves road. It is marked with a sign that says Leeuwin Naturaliste National Park, and has a decent sized entrance. You won’t miss it.
How difficult is the track?
UPDATE JANUARY 2020: I’m told the track has been graded, and was fairly easy in a couple of stock 4WD’s. I don’t expect it will stay this way for too long though!
EDIT: I’m told this track has deteriorated considerably over the years, and would now recommend you don’t attempt it without a second vehicle, or a fairly capable 4WD with your own recovery gear and bash plates if you have any lower hanging bits on your vehicle!
For most of the year the track isn’t too difficult at all. There are a few rocky sections and if you lack clearance these could be an issue. When it’s rained a fair bit there are puddles (I was there when it was very wet, and the deepest puddle was around 40cm) and the washouts are much worse. There was a handmade sign a few metres into the track when I was there that said ‘Caution; very rough track’. It can be rough in a few places, but take your time and you won’t have a problem.
I would suggest most vehicles let their tyres down to around 25PSI. For the beach you will need to lower them even more. The whole track takes around an hour return, but if you don’t spend more than an hour on the beach you are missing out!
What’s the beach like?
The beach is absolutely gorgeous. The water is bright blue and crystal clear. It’s clean, and there is enough room even at high tide to drive up and down a large part of it. The whole south west just seems to have some incredible beaches, and this is one of them.
I drove as far south as I could, but eventually got to a section which had too much of a side angle near the water, so I stopped and turned around. The sand is very soft closer to the water; lower your pressures accordingly. I didn’t drive too far north, but it looks like you can drive a decent distance. Getting back onto the track isn’t too hard providing you have the right tyre pressures.
I must admit that I was a bit lazy with my pressures when I got onto the beach, and as a result had a hard time getting out of a soft section near the water. I ended up dropping the pressures right down to 12PSI anyway. Moral of the story – don’t be lazy with your pressures and you won’t have to keep getting out and lowering them!
Fishing on the beach
The fishing from here is nothing short of spectacular, with plenty of good herring, tailor and skippy regularly biting. The salmon run each year makes it a popular destination too.
Can you camp here?
As it is within 8km of the Hamelin Bay Caravan Park you aren’t allowed to camp on the beach. It is a shame, being such a gorgeous place. You can stay at Conto’s, or head to another amazing place known as Jarrahdene. Alternatively, you can stay at the Caravan Parks, Glen Brook, or Olive Hill Farm.
If you haven’t done Bob’s Track, I’d highly recommend it. I will most certainly be back!
Note: It’s possible to drive all the way to the Hamelin bay caravan park at the Southern end of the beach, but there is a locked gate to prevent 4WD access from the caravan park onto the beach (4WDing is prohibited on the Southern end, unbeknownst to us at the time!), and the staff at the park don’t have the key to let you off! We were told that there was a sign on the beach to prevent 4WDs coming that far South but it had obviously blown away. We were planning on entering the beach from Bob’s track and exiting via the caravan park but were forced to backtrack up the beach and onto bob’s track.
Cheers for that information. The signs often get covered, or moved. We saw a similar situation in Kalbarri, but eventually found the sign buried under a mound of sand!
Tried track today, very rough, rutted and rocky in places……a good challenge though, and family lived it.
Awesome to hear. It’s fun, and pretty picturesque too!
We drove this a few days ago and the rain has uncovered a lot of rock. I drove it quite ok in my stock Pajero but it was quite challenging in parts and best to have a spotter for path selection. Beach was soft and boggy but magic. With tyres right and MaxTrax we got through no worries. Great track and amazing beach.
Thanks for the update Brad.
Such a magic part of the world!
I hadn’t done Bob’s track for at least three to four years until we tackled it as part of a Campfire Escapes weekend away. To say the track had deteriorated was an understatement. We had some cars getting hung up and bash plates tested. A spotter would greatly assist!
Cheers for the update. We haven’t done it in a long time either. Interesting to know. I guess it never gets any maintenance either
Even Nick Underwood said it has gone from being a good “beginners” track to one requiring a bit of experience. We still enjoyed the challenge. My stock tyres on a Trailblazer didnt enjoy it much..happy to say those babies have been upgraded now.
Fair enough! Amazing part of the coastline, isn’t it?!
IT sure is. Pity there aren’t more like it for “newbies”
I’m heading down there this weekend…albeit not much 4×4 action though.
Not sure what the beach is like at the moment but if you can make it all the way north from Bobs track how’s the exit up near North Point and back through Boranup?
I haven’t done this track for some time, so can’t comment. Perhaps some others here have though
All the best
Hi Joe, I’ve not seen anyone go out that way in years. My son is a regular user of that track and says one way in, one way out now.
Thanks Ash, handy to know. Do you know what other good beaches between the capes have access these days? Cheers Joe
Not many that are as nice to get down onto like Boranup (Bob’s Track). I’m struggling to think of any actually. Plenty of good tracks still, just none with the big beach access like this one. Head to the south coast 🙂
Hey guys, for those who are curious about the beach access gate at Hamelin bay. It’s not for public use, unless there is an emergency, so don’t bother with trying to drive out off the beach via this gate as it is used by the commercial fisherman at Hamelin Bay and you will see a couple of land cruisers during the annual Salmon run down there
Thanks for the information – I did see an unmarked 4WD down there a while back and wondered.
Three of us tackled this today. It was the first offroading experience for two of us (me in my 07 Range Rover Sport TDV6 and my mate in his brand new 2019 Ford Ranger Wildtrak). It was a little tricky and we were all a bit cautious through the rocky parts. Got bogged a few times in the softer sand but some regulars helped us out (thankfully)
Great day out though with some lessons learnt.
Good to hear you got it done, and had fun in the process. It’s a brilliant area.
All the best
Hey guys just wondering if anyone has accessed the beach through Boranup drive, then onto Grace road? It looks like a nice wide track in but not sure on beach access near the end (looking at maps). Thanks
Not sure if you can get to it from Boranup drive, but definitely from Trig road. Go and explore; you’ll have a ball
Just an update on Bob’s Track.
Headed out full of trepidation after our Hamelin Bay trip last year (2019) when the track was tough through the 2 rocky sections and a step up right at the start.
No problems this year (2020) – not sure who (maybe local council) have added what looks like crushed roadbase/limestone on top of the rocks and made a central track through the worst bits.
My young bloke (on L plates) drove the Patrol up with no problems.
Friends said in the 3 weeks between New Years & now the improvements had deteriorated quite a bit so get in quick 🙂
Only problem may be too many people getting onto the beach now.
Thanks for the update. We will be down there shortly. I wonder if lots of people will be using it or not!
All the best mate
Used the track today 18/04/20 and it was in good condition and easily accessible. The hill section up away from the rocks was a bit torn up where some people had got stuck and dug holes but other than that no issues.
The only thing of note was the lack of drivers we saw not letting their tyres down.
Thanks for the update. Yeah, people are lazy and they wreck the track for everyone else! Pretty easy to get a puncture on some of those rocks too, so I’m sure some learn an expensive lesson.
All the best
Hi all went today 1-6-20
Entry track not too bad just need to be careful , especially over the rocks . Beach was great, let tyres down and didn’t have a problem . Tried to find an exit to the north to take us back out to the road but as someone commented already it’s pretty much one way in one way out (north anyway)
Great spot thanks for sharing
Thanks for the update mate
Just to be clear. You are not allowed to drive to Hamlin bay from Bob’s track. We didn’t read far enough down the page and got stuck at that gate. We were nearly fined after battling the very soft sand for some time. (5psi)
Bob’s track was fine for a reasonable off road 4×4.
Cheers for the update. Yep, not a good idea to go that far south. Its super soft, isn’t it?!
All the best
In the 12 months since we last went up the track the road base over the tricky limestone sections has held up very well.
The climb up the sandhill has been chewed out badly and it’s worth walking and picking your lines first. We went just inside the big tree on the right (has some fairly hefty “kisses” where people have slid into it) – there was even a newly forming chicken track to the right of the tree.
I can’t help but wonder whether that now as it’s so easy to get to that point people haven’t been dropping their tyres and this is leading to the sand section being ripped up.
Thanks a lot for the update. I reckon you are right. My folks did it a few days ago in a stock Pajero and didn’t have too much of an issue.
Can’t wait to do it again myself!
Did track last week, 95% of track was fine. Jut after the start near the big tree was pretty chopped up, but once through there was easy as.
Thanks for the update.
Thanks to everyone for the info. Just completed this track with no issues. Plenty of rocky outcrops and walls of scratchy trees/bushes but if you don’t mind a couple of pinstripes and are happy to take it steady you’ll be rewarded with a mint view. Cheers.
I’m glad to hear you had fun. It really is a great part of the world, and the 4WD track makes it lots of fun.
All the best
Hi all, would it be suitable for a stock Pajero these days.? TIA
I read a comment the other day saying the track was OK, but the access to the beach was quite difficult.
Maybe someone else will reply who’s been there lately
All the best
25th Jan 2022
Recent bush fires burnt much of the forrest west of caves road, south of Margaret River and north of Boranup beach.
Fire trails heading west off of caves road were mostly closed, so no westward travel to Norbys Den.
The damage was north of Bobs track which was open, conditions were ok, one small section of moguls but a stock Prado handled it fine.
The beach was epic. Worth the drive. Thanks for the article, great stuff.
Thanks a lot for the updated conditions, especially around the track and terrible bush fires.
The beach is certainly magnificent!
All the best
Update following our annual pilgrimage to Hamelin Bay.
Track in good nick overall but just about a km before you get to the beach there is a big drop off where a limestone outcrop drops away to the sand. We headed to the left and went across at a 45 degree angle with no problems.
Some massive wombat holes just before beach and on way back up from beach got stuck a couple of times – need some conviction to get through them (ie some more right foot). Can’t see these getting any better anytime soon.
There is a Facebook page dedicated to the track and worth having a look before you tackle it to see if there’s any recent updates.
In the last few days there was a Nissan Navara that rolled over on the track so take care.
Thanks a lot for the update mate; much appreciated. I saw photos of the rolled vehicle; not good!