Some places we've been and some places we're going.

Archive for the ‘A Taste of Tasmania 2014’ Category

Things We Learnt This Time

We always need to buy some clothes no matter what we think when leaving home.

It’s a mistake to think laundry will be done right in the middle of the holiday.

We will need an Internet dongle next time we go away.

Two weeks is only long enough to get a tiny taste of Tassie.

 

Hope you enjoyed reading the blog. 🙂

Map of our travels:

See all the gaps? That's where we haven't been yet!

See all the gaps? That’s where we haven’t been yet!

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Devonport to Home

I awoke about 4:00 and thought the ferry had stopped, I was amazed that we had arrived so quickly as I could see the lights of what I thought was Melbourne. I knew we wouldn’t be disembarking until 6:30 so went back to sleep. At 5:30 we were both awake and the ferry was moving slowly towards Melbourne, I’d been mistaken and the lights I’d seen before were the lights of Geelong.

After making good use of the lovely hot shower we organised ourselves and thought we’d go out onto the deck to watch the sunrise but there was a fly in that ointment. Smoking is only allowed outside so it seemed that wherever we stood we were in range of smoke so we went back into the lounge.

Our car section was the last one to disembark, Alex had put our destination into the GPS so figured we’d be fine getting out of Melbourne. No. The cyborg told us to turn left when everyone else was turning right. Alex believed the cyborg and we headed for an area where semis were heading into a loading area. Luckily we were able to do a loop around and get back into the lane going towards the city and the West Gate Bridge.

We had a photo stop and breakfast at Ballarat then just continued on the freeway. Another photo stop for the Kaniva sheep and lunch then off again. We saw a few caravans heading off in the opposite direction and I was sorry our holiday was over but it is nice to be home.

Maybe we’ll get to Tassie again and have more time so we can revisit the places we loved and go to places we couldn’t manage this time, there’s certainly plenty to see and do.

Bridport to Devonport

Before heading off to Launceston we went to Barnbougle –Lost Farm, the Course aimed at those who like a more manicured course and accommodation in a resort setting. When Alex had seen all he wanted to we left for Scottsdale again as that was the better way for us to get to Launceston. After our breakfast at the Cottage Bakery in Scottsdale we headed for Launceston, the roads were again twisting and fairly narrow but nothing scarey. We stopped at a lookout which gave us a great view of the valley with Scottsdale below, a couple of the BMW riders who had been on the ferry coming over also stopped at the lookout. Their bikes looked as though they’d been over a few rough dirt roads. There were some more wood sculptures at Springfield so of course we had to stop there.

Because we’d left early we had plenty of time to spend in Launceston so we prowled around the town after we found a park. That’s not so easy when you have a camper attached but we did manage it and the meter was the type where you key in your space number then put in the money. There is no ticket to display, all the info for the different parking spaces are in the one meter. When we’d tired of the city we went to Cataract Gorge and on the way in Alex spotted a nice big Echidna. There was of course the obligatory U turn when we continued up the road instead of turning into the park. There were raucous Peacocks in the park and plenty of steps and you know whenever you go down you must come back up!

After Launceston we just drove up the main freeway to Devonport, found a park in the Woolies carpark and walked into town to get something to eat before heading to the Ferry lineup. Unlike last time I managed to stay awake and stood on deck until the ferry left Devonport and it became too cold. We watched the sunset through our cabin porthole. The crossing this time was gentle with no rocking, rolling or crashing of the hull into waves so we had a good night’s sleep.

Bridport- Barnbougle- Rossdale

The Geriatric Geezer persona had to be put on hold for the day, that wouldn’t have gone down well once he’d made a couple of slipups and people realized it was just a role he was playing. I think he would have just been Alex, the golfer, for the day. He couldn’t have picked a nicer day, there was sunshine and no wind.

After my session at the Scottsdale Library I went off to find some caches, the first was in a gorgeous park with ponds, little bridges, gazebos etc. The kind of place that thoughtful cachers choose to hide their little secrets. The second was near the cemetery not far from some graves, I think there might have been bad bushfires in 1990.

I headed back to Bridport to check out a Wildflower Sanctuary which was a bit disappointing but I certainly enjoyed the lunch I’d bought at the Baker’s in Scottsdale. The caches I found were all close to the beachfront and by the time I’d finished I needed to change into cooler clothes. I did a few more walks about the town before heading back to Barnbougle, by then it was 4 30. I thought Alex might be sunburnt but only the backs of his legs were red. They were also almost at the point of twitching too because he’d completed 2 rounds, 36 holes in a day! Both rounds he was able to play solo which pleased him.

After some recuperation time and nice showers we went over to the clubhouse for a meal in The Bistro. There were some very interesting trophies sitting on the big fireplace mantelpiece, my favourites were a real Crow, beautifully stuffed, and a big bone on a rough wooden backboard. I don’t know the stories behind the trophies but the bone one was for a women’s group. We had a very nice meal though not the lobster Alex was anticipating. Wallabies came out to feed in the tall grasses while we fed inside.

It was an excellent day for both of us.

Responding to comments

Thanks to all of you who have left comments. I’m finding it too hard to reply but will get back to you in a couple of days when I can relax and do it. It’s an absolutely beautiful day here so I’m going to upload some Geocaches and then set off on some searches. 🙂

Freycinet to Barnbougle

The sun came up and we got up, very quietly since all the other campers were sleeping. We managed to be all packed up before the Baker’s was even open so then we had a walk along the beach. There are oyster and abalone shells all along the beach and the ducks were out dabbling in the seawater again. Breakfast was at the Baker’s Shop.

Not far north of Cole Bay is a wetlands and sanctuary called, “The Moulting Lagoon Game Reserve” and having walked into it I can only say the name is apt, there were heaps of feathers all about. An Egret was standing at the water’s edge when we arrived but immediately took off and all the black swans moved away from the shoreline. There wasn’t much for us to see but I’m sure it would be very different during the breeding season when flocks of other birds arrive.

We still haven’t seen a Tasmanian Devil but we did see a Peacock today, I think she was an escapee. Why are they always called Peacocks? No-one ever says Peahen but it wasn’t a male.

St Helen’s was an interesting place with a busy wharf. We walked along the jetty and noticed various people working on their boats, many of which had stacks of cray pots on deck. Two men were working on a boat engine, one was operating a winch and the other had his head below deck in the workings. We walked to the end of the jetty then came back and when we were level with the boat with the faulty engine there was a bellow of, “You useless f…… piece of s……..”. The winch man caught my eye so I said, “It’s not going well then?” He grinned and said, “No, it’s not going well.” The Geriatric Geezer thinks I’m lucky the man below didn’t hear me or I would have scored a double dose of expletives. (Later in the day we walked along the Bridport wharf but decided it was probably wise not to go to the end where workers from the loaded sheep carrier were talking with other boatmen.)

I realized today that I only had my hikers’ boots accessible, all my other shoes are stashed under the bed in the camper which we weren’t going to open again until we got home. I didn’t think I’d be abIe to relax in the Golf Club dining room wearing hikers’ boots so I decided to look for some shoes in Scottsdale. There was a great shoe shop with a very friendly owner and the Geriatric Geezer excelled as a sales assistant. I bought some shoes and am relieved we don’t have to reopen the camper.

I think the Geriatric Geezer is in Golfers’ Nirvana, he’s booked in for a round on Barnbougle Golf Course starting at 7:20 but will be out pottering long before that. I’m going to enjoy the comfort of our cabin then go in to Bridport. There are walking tracks and a wildflower sanctuary so I’ll enjoy those. I might go back to Scottsdale to the Library which has WiFi, I’m having no luck connecting here even though it’s available and the Library in Bridport is closed on Thursdays! Before we go away again I’m going to get a tablet so I don’t have to cope with text that leaps inexplicably from place to place and an Internet dongle so I don’t have to rely on anyone for Internet access…….. or I could give up blogging and just veg out!

 

 

 

Walk to Wineglass Bay

The Geriatric Geezer thought it would be a lovely idea to walk over the pass in The Hazards to Wineglass Bay. I had serious reservations because I could see where it must go and that was UP a very rocky range. I’m not good at climbing up and had visions of collapsing somewhere that required rescue services to get me out. Against my better judgement I went and I did survive though my legs are still in shock.

When we arrived at the carpark, ready to start our walk, a Wallaby with joey came right up to us and was looking for food, there was no hint of nerves at all. Others came to join her including a joey that fed from its mother while she stood and waited for some tasty titbit. They posed beautifully but got no reward .

The way the tracks have been made is great with local rocks and boulders being used to make culverts and seats as well as steps. In some places signature pieces of large gears have been set in amongst the stones. The tracks were made by John (Snapper) Hughes who apparently also worked on Larapinta Walks in Alice Springs.

We started out wearing jackets because the wind was cold but it wasn’t long before first the jacket came off then the jumper. We climbed up to the Wineglass Bay Lookout then began the trek down to the beach. We ate lunch sitting on rocks overlooking the bay and out to the hills beyond then the trek back began. I set myself little targets eg 50 steps then a stop and after each stop extended my target until finally we reached the track to the Lookout. What a relief from then on I knew we’d be going down, now it was time for the Geriatric Geezer to suffer since his knees hurt when he’s walking downhill. Back at the campsite we enjoyed a lovely cold cider.

These campsites are so popular that over the Christmas and Easter holidays you have to put in an application then in August a lottery is drawn, if you’re lucky to win a place you can stay for up to 10 days. I think it’s just this section which has 19 powered sites & an amenities block with 2 hot showers, 4 mins for $2. There are other little enclaves for people not towing anything. There are heaps of motorhomes and campervans about mostly driven by French and Germans. There are even more Japanese, often in groups using people movers and staying in accommodation.

A gentle walk along the beach put us in the mood for dinner.