Wednesday, 7 November 2018

3 Capes

Spectacular coastline, well maintained tracks, impressive cabins, varied weather and new friends - that about sums up the 3 Capes.

Day 1

We were transported by boat from Port Arthur to Denmans Cove, exploring coves and ancient cliffs, sighting a sea eagle and dolphins on the way.

Once deposited at Denmans Cove we stopped a while to eat some lunch and enjoy the scenery. Colin went for a swim of course.

We were lucky enough to have blue skies for the start of our trek.

A short 4km later (mostly uphill) we arrived at Surveyors cabin

Day 2

Forests, heathlands and moorlands. Spring time meant lots of wildflowers too.

A climb up to Arthurs Peak and a view across Crescent Bay to Cape Raoul

A side track to a camping ground. (all that way down and now a long way up to return to the main track), alas, no creek or swimming hole for Colin, so disappointing

But it was kind of nice lying there watching the trees sway in the breeze, and 10 minutes later clouds racing by

Finally the end and what a view from Munro cabin

Day 3

Forecast - strong wind warning, gusts over 65km, possible hail and snow down to 600 metres.

Epic views and plunging cliffs (and yippee you get to leave your packs at Munro for a whole 16km, collecting them later in the day before continuing on to Retakunna cabin)

I almost got blown off this path on the return journey
Tasman Island at the end of The Blade, Cape Pillar
A stormy, moody coastline today, but still staggeringly beautiful
We were not sure we would be able to climb The Blade, luckily there was a lull between fronts, the wind dropped and we climbed to the top. Cape Pillar.

Yep, we climbed to the top of that 
a view from the top (that's Steve)
A front coming through. We ate our lunch here just as it started to hail

Day 4

A whole lots of steps

But first a walk through leafy greens and moss and up to the top of Mount Fortescue

Morning Tea time

Out to Cape Huay, the way ahead


The way behind

The view on the way

A view from the end of Cape Huay

Backtrack and down to Fortescue Bay and that is the end.

And of course Colin had a swim in the frigid water. (I was too busy finding the toilet to capture the moment)

It was a fantastic four days, made all the more enjoyable by the company. Ironically we ended up spending a lot of time with two couples, one from Torquay and the other from Ballarat who have a holiday house at Point Lonsdale! (Thanks Steve and Michelle, Tim and Serrin for letting us gate crash) The coastline, sheer cliffs and varied terrain were amazing. We saw plenty of birds and lizards, a wallaby, an echidna and a tiger snake. We experienced blue skies and sun, wind, rain and hail. We had sore and tired bodies, were revived by miso soup and wine at the end of the day (wine, thanks to our new found friends who were prepared to carry goon and willing to share). The wind howled one night, there was a warm bush shower one night, the long drop was a cold walk every night.

The 3 Capes is a fantastic first foray into multi day hiking. It was an incredible, memorable experience.

Saturday, 13 October 2018

GOW day 6

The last day, a long one too.

Wreck Beach to the 12 Apostles.

We took our start of the day group shot at the finish, the 12 Apostles, when we dropped a car there early in the morning. We figured we would be too tired to take an end of the trek photo and there would be so many tourists we wouldn't have a chance. So here is Carla's iPhone on its little stand taking a group shot for the last time.

Thankfully there was less up and down today. As usual the track alternated between bushy paths and cliff top paths, board walks, stone steps and sandy tracks.

There was a loo with a view

A river with a bridge

And a cafe a short detour away

Colin and I ate our lunch by the river, I wasn't keen for any more walking than strictly necessary

The end is in sight

The last few kilometres were hard, hot work: sandy sheltered paths. We fantasised about our celebratory afternoon tea on the way home. Pat decided on waffles with quadruple ice-cream. Alas the cafe was out of ice-cream, he had to settle for a donut instead. Jo opted for a hot dog! (it was the best one he's ever eaten). After 100km he deserved every delicious mouthful.

100km, six days of walking, spectacular views, varied terrain, wildlife, aches and pains and best of all sharing the experience with family. The kids were real troopers doing a fantastic job. Gregg was official doctor, consultant, advisor and masseuse. But the hero was my sister who's organisational skills are off the scale. Her determination and can do attitude are amazing. I had to deal with a bit of pain for a few days, she has to deal with pain most days. Despite her MS and because of her MS she has embarked on a journey where hiking is foundational. It was a privilege to be part of this adventure - she is such an inspiration.

Friday, 12 October 2018

GOW day 5

Well my day 5 was not the one I imagined.

It was a difficult decision to take a rest day, the desire to hike with the group and complete the whole track was so strong. In the end I made the sensible (and right) decision not to risk my knee - in approximately two weeks we will be hiking the 3 Capes in Tassie. If it wasn't for this upcoming hike I would have just pushed through and dealt with the consequences. Considering I am hobbling to the toilet block 200 meters away and the downhill return to the caravan is causing problems, it is probably a good thing I was 'forced' to make a sensible decision. So today is about ice, anti inflammatory's, stretching and rest. The final section of the track is flatter, so tomorrow should be ok!

Here's what the others got up to today. (photos from Colin and Carla's iPhones)

Ryans Den to Wreck Beach

Start of the day group shot

Apparently the track was similar to yesterday, an awful lot of going up and coming down (encouraging graffiti on the stair rails)

These kind of views are becoming common place!

The bush bits

By passing a farm

admiring the view and resting after another ascent

Snack time

Heading home time