Saturday, 18 January 2014

Tasmanian Wilderness Hiker - Day 4

Today was another early start with breakfast at 7:00. As I was ready with 20 minutes to spare I took a walk around the town. There are oddles of buildings scattered throughout the central area that date back to early colonial times and many of them are dated or have identifying plaques.

We were on the road just after 8 o'clock.

As we headed north we passed through farmland. Poppies were a common crop. Tasmania grows about half of the world's legally produced opium. The crops were in various stages of flowering through to harvested. Grazing, mostly sheep but also some cattle, was the other rural persuit.

We stopped Bothwell, another town founded early in the establishment of Tasmania. The pub has been continuously licencced since 1828.

A cup of coffee and a toilet break and we were off again.

Our next stop, a leg break, was at the site of the Miena dam wall. This dam is one of many that have been created for hydro electricity generation.

The wall was constructed with hollow semi-circles. This produced a wall with about half the cement required of a solid wall an advantage in such an isolated spot.

The road wound around the edge of the Great Lake. This area is dotted by shacks and shack communities. The original shacks were constructed without anyone being sure who owned the land. A little like modern day squatters. eventually it was decided that the shack owners could buy the land on which their shack stood.

A stopped at Lake Pine, a small glacial lake which lies at about 1200m. An interpretive walk has been constructed to point out features of this alpine environment. Here are some of the photos of the area and flora.

A river of rocks ... left from glacial action

Yes, there was a lake, too.
 From Lake Pine we proceeded to the carpark for a walk to Liffey Falls. The road got increasingly challenging with some very tight hairpin bends which were challenging for our drivers as we were pulling a baggage trailer and they couln't get the bus and trailer around without backing up. We were on the wilderness hiker trip after all ... so a bit of out of the way had to be expected.

We lunched next to the parking area for the walk. There were no toilet facilities and I encountered blackthorn in the spot were I went to relieve myself. Between the prickles and the thought of snakes it was almost enough to put me off!

The walk to Liffey Falls passed through some delightful forest with tall trees and ferns in abundance. There were also challenges as a number of trees had fallen across the track. I didn't get a photo of the very large tree that blocked our path which required a scramble up, over and down to continue.

Here is some of the scenery along the track.

The falls were pretty, too.

We climbed above the falls for a different perspective.

This is known as "The Spout"

It was then a case of back to the bus along the track we had walked in on. This meant that we had to negotiate THAT tree again (and still no photo!).

We did a deviation to see another seriously tall tree although this one was a mere 50m.

Occassionally we came across more open areas. Unfortuantely these areas were often populated with bracken and these ferns could be pretty tall as the follow photo atests.

There were also areas where the track was lined with ferns of various sorts (other than bracken). Here is one such place.

I really enjoyed the walk to Liffey Falls and the falls themselves.

Back on the bus we headed for Sheffield which is known as the town of the murals. For some time now, decades actually, the town has been filled with large murals on many of its walls. The murals generally depict themes associated with the premises or the area generally. They are a point of interest for the town and do bring in tourists however not enough to keep the town ticking over so they are thinking of other things that will attract outsiders to come to their town and spend their money.

1 comment:

  1. We went to Sheffield to check out the murals on our trip, but didn't do the Liffey falls, given our trip mostly consisted of eating cheese and drinking wine :)