14th February, 2012
A sunny day is awaiting me, thus I decided to explore the surroundings. Launceston is at Tamar River and is the oldest town of Tasmania. First I walked along the other part of the town, as I wanted to go to the Cataract Gorge Reserve. It is a nature reserve around laid a gorge. I walked along the gorge to the First Basin. At the small artificial lake a chairlift goes over the gorge. I preferred to walk around the lake. I saw two wallabies at the path passing the chairlift. I was very astonished that there wallabies also here. One was not shy at all and came very close to me. At the way back I sa in the park of the restaurant a few peacocks with their chicks. Back in the town I walked thorough the reserve an enjoyed a bit the nature. Then I walked along the river to the town. There I marvelled at the many Victorian houses of Launceston. My way lead to Prince's Square which contains a small park. In the City Park I discovered a monkey cage. The rest of the afternoon I was reading in the City Park and enjoying the sun.
11th February 2012
enjoyed breakfast viewing two grazing wallabies. Then I took the
shuttle bus until Dove Lake. There I hiked via Lake Lilla to Crater
Lake. As it was not very far from Marions Lookout, I also went up
there. The view over the lakes Lake Lilla, Dove Lake and Crater Lake
is gorgeous. To enjoy the view I had to pass a very steep section.
The steps were nearly to big for me and I had to pull myself on the
steel rope. Down the same way for about 30 minutes. Then I walked
down to Crater Lake and hiked further to Ronny Creek. The last part
was a boardwalk and there I saw a grazing wombat.
I took again the shuttle bus to another stop and walked to two
waterfalls. The Knyvet Falls can only been seen from the side. On the
way there was also a dam constructed by platypuses. I did not see any
animals as they only get out shortly before dawn.
the afternoon it got sunny. I walked for another our on the boardwalk
and enjoyed the nature. There were many lizards and I had to make
sure I did not step on one. As I wanted to look for wombat in the
later afternoon, I went first to the Devils at Cradle Park. There
they showed first a film about the Tasmanian devils. The animals are
endangered because many of them die due to a infectious face tumour.
I could even pet a devil, it has a fine fur. The Tasmanian Devils
seemed to be very relaxed and the keeper could go to them. Then it
started to rain slightly. It got stronger and I decided to go back to
the accommodation. As I arrived it was coming down in buckets.
10th February, 2012
a big brake I drove from Strahan to the Cradle Mountain National
Park. Just before noon I arrived there. First I visited the visitor
center. Here I learnt that there are shuttle busses in the park.
Cool, like this I can walk from one point to the next. First I took a
ride to Dove Lake. Like everywhere in the park, you need to write
down your intended way. So I can be sure they will search for me if
something happens. Then I started the hike around Dove Lake. Here you
can see Mount Cradle from each side of the lake. A beautiful path led
along the shore and through the forest. At the beginning I saw an
echinda, but it did not let itself disturb while having lunch. Due to
the black clouds, I decided to do small walks only. Along one of
those tracks I met a Wombat. It was thinking already in the afternoot
that it is now evening and was already about to get dinner. After
this short encounter it started raining and I returned. I drove to my
accommodation and found a hut with everything I need. The rain
stopped again I went for a walk into the park. I saw a few birds,
some of them of an to me so far unknown species, and a small wallaby.
While I was preparing the dinner, there was also a Wallaby grazing
7th February, 2012
breakfast I was asked by a hostel staff what I will do today. As it
was sunny I was thinking about going up to Mount Wellington to enjoy
the view. He explained me that there are three possibilities to get
there. First with the car, but I do not have one. Second with the
tourist bus, but there I just have 20 minutes time up there and I pay
a lot. The third possibility is to go with the public bus to Ferntree
and to hike up for two hours and then back down again. As I had time
and the weather was good I chose variant 3. Later it turned out to be
not the best one. I went by bus to Ferntree. There I asked in a shop
how to get to Mount Wellington and they explained me the way. Following
different pathes I hiked uphill. As long as it goes up it must be
right. It got higher and higher and I could view out into the
country. Slowly the clouds gathered and a light shower started. But
the sun was back soon and I went on. Then the rain started again, but
this time stronger. I was not sure if I should continue. After 10
minutes of thinking, the sun was back again. OK, lets go to the
summit. A bit below an Australian told me that here is the best view.
I sat down and enjoyed it. We talked a little. As soon as I arrived
on the top, the rain started again. Still I viewed the sight and then
stood below the roof of a hut. The rain did not stop anymore. Some
guys which passed me when going up were looking for a lift. I thought
this is a good idea and asked a man in about my age if he is driving
to Hobart. He is from Hobart so I could join him on the way back. On
the way he told me that it is in Tasmania quite difficult to find a
job. Many go to the mainland to work. But they are missing nursing
personnel like in all Australia. Back in Hobart it was sunny again.
According to this nice young man the weather is very annoying this
summer. It was not a real summer so far. In the late afternoon the
rain came back all the time, so that I went into a museum about
1st February, 2012
the hostel we met yesterday Flo from Germany. He studies in St. Gall
and is doing an exchange semester in Australia. As he did not travel
by car he asked if he might join us. We sat off in the morning to the
Prom, how the National Park is tenderly called by the locals. On the
drive to Tidal River an Emu crossed the road, but it was too fast to
take a picture. First we informed us in the tourist information which
tracks were open. Many are closed as there were floods in the last
year. For warm-up we walked to the Norman Bay. On the way we chased
off a snake which wanted to take a sunbath. To have time to enjoy the
view we went along the beach back to the car park. Now warmed up we
hiked in the Lilly Pilly Gully. There was a dry rainforest. To get a
better view over the Prom we went up Mount Bishop. Suddenly there was
a loud noise in the bush beside us. We guessed that was a wallaby
fleeing us. Even as the peak was only at 319 m, we had a spectacular
view. Back at the car park we drove to Squeaky Beach. If you walk on
that beach, it crunches below your feet. We were striding around the
rocks and discussed what will be next. I was a bit sceptical about
the suggestion to hike another 6 km as I felt already my sensible
knee. So we decided to walk to a bay named Millers Landing. On the
way a bird couple was trying to get feed from the tree beside the
track and the cones dropped to the floor with a big crack.
Understandable that we were a bit scared. But these kind of parrots
we did not yet meet: black with yellow spots on the head and tail. We
also met a few wallabies. To some we could get as close as 2 meters.
Impressive. Down at the bay there were mangroves and black swans. As
I still had some power left, we hiked up to another viewpoint. The
track to the Vereker Outlook lead over many rocks and went up and up.
The view was brilliant. On one side the sea and the islands, on the
other the wide nature park. On the way back home we saw more
kangaroos, cockatoos and other birds. It was a very nice day and I
was surprised that I hiked in total about 20 km.