Historic Kelly Basin Walk

Historic Kelly Basin Walk

Kelly Basin is on the south east side of Macquarie Harbour on Tasmania’s west coast. The towns of East and West Pillinger once stood on Kelly Basin and had a population of over 1000. East Pillinger was established as a port for the North Mount Lyell Mining Company’s rail line which ran from Queenstown bringing copper to be exported.. The town was abandoned in 1924 after the rival Mount Lyell Mining Company took over North Mount Lyell Mining. Today there are still remnants of the port town of East Pillinger to be explored. This includes brick kilns, parts of buildings, giant metal boilers and the old wharf. We wanted to see for ourselves so headed off from Queenstown to do the half day walk.

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Two Walks in the Tarkine

Two Walks in the Tarkine

The term Tarkine or takayna, its Aboriginal name, is used to describe much of north west Tasmania. It is a region of rainforests and rivers, imposing mountains and wild coastlines. It is currently unprotected. There are ongoing efforts by many people to have this remedied to protect the area for future generations. With regular walking companion Graeme, we chose two walks in the southern part of the Tarkine – the Huskisson River Rainforest Walk and Mt Murchison, one of the west’s highest peaks.

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Secret Tasmania: Clydes Island and Beyond

Secret Tasmania: Clydes Island and Beyond

Many visitors to the Tasman Peninsula, on their way to the Port Arthur Historic Site, make a brief stopover at the Tessellated Pavement State Reserve at Eaglehawk Neck. They come to admire the unusual, geometric patterns in the coastal rock platform. From the Tessellated Pavement the view to the north features a small island adjacent to the shore. This is Clydes Island. Few bother to make the leisurely one kilometre walk along the beach and rocky shoreline to the island. We decided to have a closer look at Clydes Island and then to venture along the cliff-top trail that we’d heard continues beyond.

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The Needles - One of Tasmania's Most Spectacular Short Wilderness Walks

The Needles - One of Tasmania's Most Spectacular Short Wilderness Walks

The Needles are a group of rocky spires that protrude from the landscape of south west Tasmania. The 2 – 3 hour return walk to the top-most Needle (1020m) takes you up a steepish trail with spectacular views unfolding as you ascend. From the top you have a 360 degree panorama of the SW Wilderness World Heritage Area. On a clear day this has to be one of Tassie’s most spectacular short wilderness walks.

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Cape Raoul - The Third Cape

Cape Raoul - The Third Cape

When you book the Three Capes Track 4 day walk, in SE Tasmania, you are actually only getting two capes for your money – Cape Pillar and Cape Hauy. This isn’t to say that it isn’t a fabulous experience – it is. The trail takes you along some of Australia’s most spectacular coast and cliffs. But if you want your full complement of capes then you need do a separate additional day walk to nearby Cape Raoul. This post describes our recent visit to Cape Raoul, our first since new track work was done.

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Secret Tasmania - Bluff Canyon

Secret Tasmania - Bluff Canyon

Tasmania is full of places and attractions that don’t feature prominently in the tourist literature. In fact, some are so obscure that many locals don’t even know about them. This post describes a day walk we did to little known Bluff Canyon. In the spirit of Secret Tasmania, we don’t give too much detail about where and how to do the walk. There are no maps here. If you’re interested, you might need to do a bit of extra research.

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Monk Bay Circuit Walk (Incorporating Historic Convict Coal Mines)

Monk Bay Circuit Walk (Incorporating Historic Convict Coal Mines)

The Monk Bay Circuit Walk is a 8.3km coastal walk within the Lime Bay State Reserve, Tasman Peninsula in south east Tasmania. It’s an easy 3 – 3.5 hour walk with constant views of the surrounding waterways.

The Tasman Peninsula is also home to the Port Arthur Historic Site, Australia’s premier colonial convict site. Close to Port Arthur are the remains of a large convict probation station established for the purposes of coal mining. Today there are well preserved ruins with good interpretative signs. The Historic Coal Mines site can easily be combined with the Monk Bay walk making for a varied and interesting day trip from Hobart. And it’s all free.

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Arthurs Peak Day Walk, Tasman National Park

Arthurs Peak Day Walk, Tasman National Park

Arthurs Peak is in the Tasman National Park in Tasmania and is on the route of the recently opened and popular Three Capes Walk - a multi-day fee paying walk.  Since the advent of the Three Capes Walk we were unclear as to whether it was still possible to walk to Arthurs Peak via an old track. We also wanted to clarify what the options were for overnight walking in the park for self-sufficient campers who were not paying to stay in the designated huts that are exclusively for paying walkers. This post sets out to provide answers these questions and describe the day walk we succeeded in doing to Arthurs Peak.

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Shadow Lake and Mt Rufus Circuit (Cradle Mountain – Lake St. Clair National Park)

Shadow Lake and Mt Rufus Circuit (Cradle Mountain – Lake St. Clair National Park)

Lake St. Clair is at the southern end of Cradle Mountain – Lake St. Clair National Park. The car park and visitors centre are at Cynthia Bay. This is also the end point for people completing the Overland Track from north to south. From here there are a number of good day walks as well as longer walks. We decided to head out there for a long weekend, with a good weather forecast, to do a bit of exploring, including a walk and camping at Shadow Lake and to do the Mt Rufus Circuit.

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Mt Rogoona Circuit, Walls of Jerusalem National Park

Mt Rogoona Circuit, Walls of Jerusalem National Park

The Mt Rogoona Circuit is a 25km circuit in the southern end of the Walls of Jerusalem National Park, Tasmania. It provides access to a less visited part of this increasingly popular national park. The circuit takes in spectacular views of rugged Mt Rogoona, some beautiful lakes and a couple of historic huts. There are a number of good campsites along the route and it is also a way to access the exotically named Never Never. Here is our experience of the walk.

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Roches Beach to Seven Mile Beach Short Walk

Roches Beach to Seven Mile Beach Short Walk

The Roches Beach to Seven Mile Beach track is an easy, pleasant, short coastal walk with spectacular views. Located 22km east of Central Hobart, it is a 20 minute drive from town. The walk is 3.3km one way. You can start the walk from either end. If you want a longer walk you can start or finish at Lauderdale Canal rather than Roches, a total of 6km.

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The Leeaberra Track – Douglas Apsley National Park, East Coast Tasmania

The Leeaberra Track – Douglas Apsley National Park, East Coast Tasmania

The Douglas Apsley National Park is on Tasmania’s East Coast, between the towns of St Marys and Bicheno. It gets its name from the park’s two main rivers. The Leeaberra Track runs the length of the park, which contains the largest remaining area of dry sclerophyll forest in Tasmania. It also has rivers, waterfalls, rugged rock formations and a variety of vegetation types.

With friend and long-time walking companion Graeme (who also has a dodgy knee) we decided to tackle the 2.5 day, 28 km walk. Here's our walk report.

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Shipstern Bluff Walk

Shipstern Bluff Walk

On a visit to Tassie brother Pete was keen to check out Shipstern Bluff on the Tasman Peninsula. As a lifelong surfer he’d heard a lot about “Shippies”, as it’s known. Its reputation as a big wave break ridden by only the gutsiest of surfers has spread world-wide. As it turned out the surf wasn't happening on the day we visited but it was still a good day walk.

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Alum Cliffs Track, Hobart

Alum Cliffs Track, Hobart

It was a lazy, early spring Sunday morning and we wanted to get a bit of exercise. We settled on the Alum Cliffs track, which begins near Kingston Beach in Hobart’s southern suburbs. This is a 6 km return coastal walk with some good views of the river and cliffs. The starting point is Tyndall Beach, which is a dog-friendly beach on the northern side of Browns Rivulet across from Kingston Beach. Here is our report on the walk.

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