Friday, March 07, 2008
Wednesday, March 05, 2008
Penguin 27 February - 1 March 2008
Dropped off Jimmy to an auto-electrician to get some work done and then popped over to Penguin to see Will, (who we had met when we were here in November). He was planning to sell off many of his antiques, so we spent a day helping him catalogue them at his house. He was delightful and eccentric enough to click with us! We took it easy by the sea at Penguin and loved the warmth the few days gave us. These North Central areas are far more protected than most of Tassie and with the towns all facing due north across the water they would be the pick of it for us. Another perfect weather day with a light cardie and lots of sun keeping us warm. The thermometer was no higher than 18c but we remarked about the heat! It was lovely enough to go to the rail tracks by the beach and pick a few kilos of blackberries. This time we sacrificed them to make 5 jars of jam!
Unfortunately, Heather stumbled in a small pothole yesterday and has a sore foot to limp on. Fortuitously all major walks have been done so limited walking for a week,
BOOKED the boat back to the OTHER ISLAND today (going OS)! We will leave Devonport on Friday night, 7th March! Hopefully the sea will be calm! Wish us smooth sailing! The trip will have been for a full 4 months! Could easily stay another month but we miss you all!
Sunday, March 02, 2008
Burnie 26 February 2008
The night was very quiet and the morning perfect! The still water and flat beach beckoned us back for another long walk along the beach. We took lots of photos of little rock pool creatures and had to drag ourselves away! Eventually we headed off for Table Cape, the next scenic headland. Along the track in we passed a huge tulip farm. We bought some bulbs and saw amazing photos of the tableland covered in multiple bands of coloured tulips in spring. The soil was an amazing rich red volcanic soil that turned this small area into a little Holland!
The highlight is the view from the look out! The water was an amazing blue and the vistas distant we saw Mt Duncan in the distance! We walked along the cliffs to the old lighthouse and actually felt very hot, though the thermometer stated about 18deg! The sun has a very big bite to it in Tassie!
Drove onto Burnie (Cooee Point), and settled down for a quiet night with only the ocean to disturb us!
Boat Harbour 25 February 2008
Set off for Rocky Cape N.P. on a perfect sunny day! The scenery was great and we were delighted with the scenery. We wandered into a perfect bay intending to stop for lunch only. However when we got there, it was so beautiful we stayed the night. The bay faced NE, with white sand and aqua blue, still water. Wonderful rocky outcrops edged the bay! In the afternoon, we drove to Sisters Beach and walked through the national park up some steep tracks for great views over the beach and bays. Aboriginal caves, Banksia groves and bright pink, red and white heaths and ericas were are few highlights. A continuing theme of picking blackberries was maintained in the carpark! The setting for the evening back at boat Harbour remained perfect!
Smithton 24 February 2008
After the Arthur River cruise we moved on to Smithton late in the afternoon and quickly settled back on the river where we stopped last time! At last the sun struggled through and the wind dropped! Good weather is back!
Arthur River 22 - 23 February 2008
We awoke to a cloudy dull day and decided to move on west - not much further and the west was ours! Arthur River is a small settlement, hardly a town with only 30 permanent residents and is surrounded by the Arthur River NP. There was a warning for gale force winds; boy was that the truth! It shook the motorhome for two nights! It blew and rained upon us and confined us to the motorhome for a whole day. Eventually Heather became nauseous and seemed to suffer motion sickness! A drive in the car did not make it much better! But we did take the dirt road south for 30kms and saw some wonderful remote places. It was desolate in the wind and rain with lots of rocky outcrops and interesting tiny bays and shelters. Couta Rocks was particularly interesting with a strange array of fishing shacks and some very big boats. The coast is littered with kelp.
At the Arthur River estuary they have dedicated a poem to the lookout and called it The Edge of the World. It is an amazing view and worthy of our effort in getting here! The coast and shore is strewn with enormous piles of large tree size driftwood thrown up in each river flooding. The sea was huge and the wind wild. The Roaring Forties blow in here with all the force you can imagine. If you travelled west from that point your first land is South America! An interesting effect of the Roaring Forties is the predominance of a barometric tide and the elimination of lunar tides. The tide comes in at night and out during the day at the same time every day! It seems so strange to have high tide every day at 3am!
We put off the river cruise due to the weather but on the last day relented! After another night of 30 – 40 knot winds we thought – “What the hell! This must be normal West Coast weather!” It was great as the wind eased down the river valleys and the rain held back, although it was a very cool 12 deg day. Apparently it snowed in Hobart that night! We saw a pair of Sea Eagles and their huge nest, which was known to be 40 years old and the birds about 36 years old! We stopped for quite a long time to observe them. We had a lovely picnic lunch in a remote forest with a lovely log fire then walked through the forest along the creek bed amongst lush green ferns. We saw huge tree ferns including one lying on the ground, twisting and turning for 16 metres and we were told it was 1200 years old!