4WD vehicles driving along a very sandy coastal track
Sandy Cape Track, Arthur-Pieman Conservation Area (photograph: Dan Broun)

Sandy Cape Track

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Alerts for Sandy Cape Track

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Safety alert: Whale carcasses on the West Coast
Applies from 1/4/2022

​​​​​​​​​​​​​Following the mass stranding of long-finned pilot whales near Strahan in September 2020, the majority of carcasses from within Macquarie Harbour, and on the southern end of Ocean Beach (from Macquarie Heads to Ocean Beach Trail) have been removed and/or buried.

Large numbers of whale carcasses remain in other areas, including along the ocean coastline from Cape Sorrell to Low Rocky Point, and along the northern end of Ocean Beach (from Ocean Beach Trail to Trial Harbour).

The public and dogs must not approach or come into contact with whale carcasses. Contact can be hazardous and spread harmful bacteria. Visitors are strongly encouraged to check for carcasses upstream of the coastline in creeks and rivers before collecting drinking water; and to be aware that additional native scavengers and predators have likely been attracted to the area by the whales.

It is an offence under the Whales Protection Act 1988 to interfere, obtain or possess any part or product of a whale.

The Parks and Wildlife Service expects whale carcasses will move with the tides, and continue to wash up and down the coastline for some time. Heavy storm activity may also uncover previously buried whale carcasses. 

The Parks and Wildlife Service apologises for any inconvenience.​​​​

Last reviewed 7/4/2022 10:19 AM


  • ​​​​​​Map: Tasmap 1:100000 - Nelson Bay
  • Distance: 48 km return
  • Rating: Difficult - for experienced 4WD and motorbike users only. Deep bogs, steep slopes, soft sand are likely to be encountered. 

Located in the Arthur-Pieman Conservation Area, The Sandy Cape track provides outstanding coastal scenery and beautiful camping spots. The main campsites on the track are at Greenes Creek, Pedder River, and Sandy Cape. 

All users of the Sandy Cape Track require an Arthur-Pieman Recreational Drivers Pass.​​ Camping south of Temma is included in the purchase of a Recreational Drivers Pass. Camping fees apply for sites north of Temma and can be paid at the Arthur River Parks and Wildlife Service office.

About the track​

Temma to Greenes Creek (12 km)

The track is rated medium 4WD standard, however it can increase in difficulty after rainfall with deep-water sections. 

Greenes Creek to Sandy Cape (12 km)

This beach drive is rated as hard 4WD standard.

Travelling in the company of other vehicles is essential along Sandy Cape beach due to the occurrence of quicksand, that has been known to swallow whole vehicles, and the potential need for rapid retrieval, before the tide rises. ​Always check conditions before driving on beachesLarge swell will have an impact on the beach accessibility and beach driving is not recommended with 4 metre plus swells. After rainfall in winter, the rivers may also be high, this combined with large ocean swell makes the conditions too dangerous to traverse the 4WD tracks.

The coastal area between Marrawah and Granville Harbour, including between Temma and Sandy Cape is within an area listed as The Western Tasmania Aboriginal Cultural Landscape. Numerous hut depressions and shell middens show that Aboriginal people lived a specialised and sedentary lifestyle in this area, building permanent and semi-permanent villages, and hunting seals, shellfish and land mammals. Aboriginal sites must be respected and not damaged or interfered with. H​e​avy penalties can be imposed for damage to the cultural sites under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1975. A number of tracks have been closed to protect Aboriginal sites and heritage.​


Arthur River Field Centre
1409 Arthur River Road
Arthur River TAS 7330
Phone: 03 6457 1225
Email: ArthurRiver@parks.tas.gov.au