With so much natural, unspoilt bushland it is no wonder that there are so many well-marked trails for walkers and cyclists to use to explore in Western Australia.
Kep is the Noongar word for “water”. Noongar is the name of the group of aboriginal people who first populated the land many thousands of years ago, who know and understand the land so very well.
The reason for it being called the Kep Track is because it, basically, follows the water pipeline which runs between Mundaring and Kalgoorlie. This pipeline was an amazing and difficult engineering feat, the completion of which allowed the Goldfields to be developed and opened up rich agricultural land to farmers.
The Kep Track also links three important rivers, the Swan, Helena and Avon. It is a multi-use trail, being open to walkers, cyclists and those riding horses. Although the track has a reputation for following the pipeline, it actually follows the easier railway reserve because of its gentle gradients and well-defined route.
Because it follows the route of the former railway line, its degree of difficulty is listed as being easy. Those who wish to walk the track shouldn’t find it much of a challenge, and it is a pretty straight forward ride for cyclists.
For those who wish to walk the track in its entirety, the journey would take three to four days. Cyclists would obviously take less time, depending on their level of fitness. It is more common for people to attack the track in smaller sections.
Although you can do the track from town to town, or even smaller sections if you are so inclined, the track is broken down into four main sections for those who want a good outing. The first is a 15 kilometre section from Mundaring Weir to Mt Helena. The next section covers 18km from Mt Helena to Wooroloo. There is then a 17km section from Wooroloo to Baker’s Hill, and finally a 25km route from Baker’s Hill to Northam.
The Kep is very easy to follow as distinctive markers containing directional arrows are located along the way; as are information signs when you reach a point of significance so that you can learn about the place you are visiting.
So that you always know where you are, jarrah sleeper signs alert you to any hazards, such as road crossings, they also give street names and distances to the next town so that getting lost is, thankfully, a difficult feat.