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Saturday, 23 August 2014

Hartz Peak

Saturday 23rd August 2014

Mount Snowy and Hartz Peak
Today I went for a walk to Hartz Peak with a couple of friends, on a fantastic clear day, and the scenery from the top was simply stunning. Most of the previous times I have been here the peak was shrouded in cloud and visibility was limited, but not today.
The start is easily reached by turning off at Geeveston and following the signs. National Parks Pass required.
I won't write much of a description as the walk is describe in many other places and is easy to walk.
We set off early before everyone else, and that proved to be a good move, as we ended up having the peak to ourselves while we were up there.
The walk is on boardwalk for a lot of the way and we detoured to check out Lake Esperance on the way up. Just below Hartz Pass we encountered some snow, but it was not too difficult to cross, and after the final climb we reached the summit. As I said previously, the views were great, but the wind came up and it became quite cold, so we didn't linger too long. On the descent we started to meet hikers walking up and this became a regular occurrence. Even a couple in shorts and T shirts. I didn't think it was that warm. We continued on down to find the car park full.
This is a great iconic walk in south east Tasmania with fantastic views on a good day.
Distance: 8.1 kms.
Time: 3'26"
Ascent: 480 metres
Click here to download GPX track.
Lake Esperance

Hartz Mountains

Mount Snowy

Snow at Hartz Pass

From Hartz Pass

Hartz Lake

Hartz Lake

Looking West

Looking South West

Looking South West

Summit



Thursday, 21 August 2014

Bluff River Gorge

Thursday 21st August 2014

Bluff River
Today was just going to be a short walk in the Bluff River Gorge and the intention was to walk down to the gorge and then along the eastern side of the river and the back along an old track. It all went to plan.
To reach the walk start, drive out on the A3 towards Buckland and then the C318 (Buckland Road) for about 11.6 kms to the walk start. It is about 600 metres past the Cutting Grass Road intersection and on the edge of a cleared paddock. There is a small parking area here.
Sandy access track
I set off at 0830 along a rough track that headed east towards the river. There was evidence of plenty of motor bike and foot traffic as it was quite sandy. It would be possible to drive down this track in a good 4WD. At the 1.2 km. mark I took the left track and carried on to 1.6 kms. where a foot track branched off and descended to the river. It was quite easy to follow and was well marked with tape. There was not a great flow in the river and it was easily forded.
Bluff River Crossing
Once across the river the track climbed up and then backtracked slightly before eventually reaching a height which was just under the top of the cliffs. There were great views of the weathered sandstone cliffs and I took some time checking them out.
The track under the sandstone cliffs
The track continued on basically following around the path of the river but well above it. In places there were good views across to the other side of the gorge.
Sandstone Cliffs

Sandstone Cliffs

View across to other side
I found a good spot in the sun to have a snack and then continued on. At the point where the track started heading down to the river, I carried on following the old track which eventually arrived at the northern river crossing. It was difficult trying to remain on track in this section, but it did not matter, as it was just the case of walking around the river bank. The river was easily crossed  and then I climbed up to find the old vehicle track and followed this back to the car.
This was a great short walk with nice scenery, and on a picture perfect day as well.
Distance: 8.3 kms.
Time: 3'22"
Ascent: 315 metres
Click here to download GPX track.
Sandstone feature

Sandstone Cliffs

Sandstone Cliffs

Sandstone Cliffs

Sandstone Cave

Sandstone Cave


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Friday, 15 August 2014

Pelverata and Slippery Falls

Thursday 14th August 2014

Top of Pelverata Falls
The aim of today's outing was to walk to the top of Pelverata Falls and then around to the top of Slippery Falls. I had been to the top of Pelverata Falls in February 2013 but the creek had been completely dry then, so I expected a somewhat better flow today. I was pleasantly surprised as the creek was flowing well.
The walk starts in Van Morey Road out from Margate, the last 2 kms. being definitely 4WD.
Today I was joined by a companion, which made a nice change, as I usually walk on my own.
We set off at 0845 on a perfect day for walking. The sky was so clear. There was a few small patches of snow/ice on the side of the road, but it wasn't overly cold.
Old Boiler beside the road - from an ancient sawmill I think
The 4WD track was in the usual condition for this time of year, that is full of muddy puddles which were easily skirted around.. We passed the Morrison Hill and Grey Mountain turn offs and kept heading west on the Pelverata Falls track. The old sawmill site was noted on the left and the remains of an old boiler on the right. The track went downhill from here to the right turn to the falls.The road had small streams flowing down it so I was hopeful of a good flow over the falls. After making the turn we just walked down the track to Pelverata Falls. The track showed lots of activity from 4WDs but we did not see anyone all day.
Pelverata Creek just before the falls
As expected there was a good flow in the creek and the falls looked great. It was difficult to obtain a really good shot of the falls, because I had to inch close to the cliff edge, and went as far as I was comfortable.
Top of Pelverata Falls
There were great views out to the Wellington Range and the weather remained exceptionally clear. Across the valley we could see Slippery Falls, which was our next destination. After a short break we climbed back up to the 4WD track area and searched for a track leading to Slippery Falls.
Slippery Falls taken from Pelverata Falls
It didn't take long to spot a tape in the scrub, so we headed off following a lightly used pad through the bush. It was marked with tapes here and there and was generally fairly easy to follow. There was also one section which was quite overgrown but it didn't last long. Soon we could hear the cascade as the track descended to the top of Slippery Falls. Pelverata Falls could be clearly seen across the valley.
Pelverata Falls from Slippery Falls
There was a reasonable flow in Slippery Creek as well and we decided that this would be a good spot for an early lunch. After a short break we retraced our steps back to the car.
This was an enjoyable walk, and, although the majority is on 4WD tracks, the scenery in the falls area was great. It was also good to have someone along to share it with.
Distance: 14.2 kms.
Time: 4'55"
Ascent: 405 metres
Click here to download GPX track.
Between the two falls

Top of Pelverata Falls

Top of Pelverata Falls

Looking out from Pelverata Falls

Slippery Falls



Friday, 8 August 2014

Mount Arthur - Northern Tasmania

Friday 8th August 2014

Along Mount Arthur Ridge
This was my second walk in Northern Tasmania. The start of the walk is reached by driving out along Lilydale Road and then turning into Mountain Road and following this for 3.7 kms. to a sign which states " No parking past here". There is a small parking area adjacent.
On the drive out the range had appeared cloud free so I was hoping for a good day. I set off walking up the road and soon encountered a sign indicating the start of the track. This was about 230 metres from the car park.
Forest Track
The track was easy to follow and was marked quite well with tapes. The track climbed steadily through dampish forest and at about 2.5 kms. from the start the rocks began to increase in size. There were a few trees down caused by the recent windy weather, but nothing too bad. As I started to climb through the rocky section the cloud started rolling in and pretty soon visibility was reduced a fair bit. When I finally reached the summit ridge the cloud parted a little so I had some fleeting views.
Nearing the Ridgeline
At this point I was still about 1.0 km from the actual summit but could not see where that was. I just carried along the summit ridge, passing many masts and towers and solar panels and wind generators and other stuff.
As I neared the summit the large cairn appeared out of the mist so I had to climb up to it. Surprisingly as I reached the top the cloud lifted completely and I was treated to the good views. The reverse usually happens.
Summit Cairn
Actually climbing up to the cairn was quite tricky as the rocks were rather slippery and there were some very deep holes between the rocks that I would not like to have fallen in. Climbing back down was probably worse.
Summit Ridge
After about ten minutes the cloud returned as I made my way back along the ridge. As I was descending, I came across a group of what looked like school kids and teachers on their way up. They were having a rest just where the rocks started. I continued on down and managed to slip over once where this group had made it a little slippery but arrived back at the car okay, just a little dirty.
This was a good walk and would have been better if I could have seen better where I was going along the top. Never the less I enjoyed it.
Distance: 8.6 kms.
Time: 3'50" ( the sign states 5 hours return)
Ascent: 700 metres
Click here to download GPX track.
Fungi along the track

Along the summit ridge

Along the summit ridge

Along the summit ridge