Monday, 22 February 2010

Day 12 Mt Field National Park (Rest Day)

Date: 17/JAN/2010
Route:Mt Field National Park
Distance:0 km
Accident: 0
Puncture: 0
Weather: Land of the Giants Campground ($10 / Unpowered)

Today was a rest day, so the day has passed in a very simple way with, sleeping, reading, walking and eating.

I woke up at 7.30am. I saw a blue sky. Thanks to the tiredness from yesterday's lengthy and demanding ride, I had one of the soundest sleep in this journey. Feeling fresh made me walk for a while. I went to the Park's famous Russel Fall. The walk was about 30minuites return from the tent. The fall was nice as usual.

Russel Fall - Mount Field National Park

Back to my tent, I took shower and went to the information centre to get some water and information of the Park.

At the information centre, Mark was having a cup of coffee wondering what to do next today. He had packed all his stuff by then so I said bye to him and I went back to the camp. I had another sleep till 1.30pm.

Then, I wrote yesterday's diary, read lonely planet and a novel, Songlines, one of the books I brought for this trip.

I had coffee later afternoon as I haven't had anything hot since yesterday's lunch. Unfortunately, the coffee was not hot enough but the staff at the cafe was warm enough.

Now, its about 5.30 in the afternoon. I will have dinner shortly and get ready for tomorrow.

It's been a nice rest day.

There are heaps of them in the Park - Tasmanian Podemelon

Today's Route

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Thursday, 11 February 2010

Day 11 Lake St Clair to Mt Field National Park

Date: 16/JAN/2010
Route:Lake St Clair - Derwent Bridge - Tarraleah - Ouse - Westerway - Mt Field National Park
Distance:123 km
Accident: 0
Puncture: 0
Weather: Land of the Giants Campground ($10 / Unpowered)

Today, I had a lazy morning with a dash of hangover as I had some drinks with the guys who had done the Overland Track to celebrate their compilation of the Track plus the strong wind did not give me a sound sleep. Therefore, I work up around 9.00am.

The deepest lake in Australia - Lake St Clair

Before I start riding, I wandered around the Lake. I did a walk called "Platypus Walk". This easy 20 minutes return walk took me to some of the beautiful viewing spots for the Lake and the point you would get some possibility to see platypus. I went to the spot where platypus might appear and waited, waited and waited. After 15 minuets of patience nothing showed up.

Platypus info 1

Platypus info 2

I left the lake about after 10.00am saying good bye to Dermot, one of who I met at the camp.

Near Darwent Bridge an Austrian cyclist, Max, found me and talked to me. He told me that he was heading to Hamilton toady. Since I was heading the same direction, I said that why didn't we go together. Then he said why not. I got a company toady.

Max was from Vienna, the second most livable cities in the world (Perth is 9th btw,). He was way too fit. He rode very fast and he didn't stop. So consequently toady's ride became a very speedy and long ride.

As Max found out the fact that was no proper accommodation in Hamilton, we decided to go to Mt. Field National Park, which was south west of Hamilton.

The general trend of the day was decent, we had a massive descents today. Because some of them were so long down, I felt like I was being dragged to the hell, but it was great fun going 40-50km/h with no effort. On the other side there were some demanding hills as well.

The area we rode today had a number of dams around so we saw quiet a few number of water pipes, rivers, lakes and something watery.

Massive Water Pipes - Tarraleah

We got to the National Park at 7.00pm. The last 40km was crazy fast as we were afraid of getting to the bed too late and ended up with not finding a place to sleep. When we get to here he went to stay in the backpackers hostel in the national park and I went to the campground. So we said good bye and wish our luck and left each other. It was great to meet you Max.

Nice Weather - Near Ouse

At the campground, I met a South Australian bloke (meet so many people these days somehow.) He was a sommelier, who chooses the best suited wine at a restaurant. Since I was a bit interested in wine, it was interesting to make a chat about wine. Although there was no alcohol involed tonight, the Park's beautiful setting made me feel like drunk.

It was a long day with lenghthy ride but its was a very productive day as well.

Today's Route

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Sunday, 7 February 2010

Day 10 Queenstown - Lake St Clair

Date: 15/JAN/2010
Route:Queenstown - (Franklin - Gordon Wild Reserve National Park, Cradle Mountain Lake St Clair National Park) - Derwent Bridge - Lake St Clair
Distance: 100km
Accident: 0
Puncture: 0
Weather: Fine
Accommodation: Fergys Paddock (Free / No Facilities)

Today's ride was the in the most beautiful and wild parts Tasmania of my tour so far. There was a number of rolling water falls, deep rain forests, beautiful rivers, magnificent mountains and massive lakes to visit and see. In addition, the weather today was perfectly fine!

Rolling Falls - Nelson Falls

The ride started from a famous 99 Bend Road. This road starts just out of Queenstown. As the name suggests this road has so many corners and hills and as the plantation was destroyed by the past-mining, I felt like riding on the moon.

Like the moon - 99 Bend Road

After that, Lake Burbury came into my eyes. The lake was breathtaking as mountains and the blue sky was nicely reflecting against water surface. Also, it was really calm day and there was hardly no traffic. I felt like the lake was mine. I met Californian couple cyclists at a campsite beside the lake. (Beautiful campsite). They were riding clockwise from Hobart (Opposit to mine). Their bike were also cool mountain bike based touring bike with thick block tyers on.

Picturesque Lake - Lake Burbury

As soon as the lake was over, the way was gradually getting hilly. The next hill was Victoria Pass. During the climbing, I stopped at Nelson Fall 20 minutes walk to check out this famous water fall. No doubt, It was beautiful.

Then, I kept on riding the hill. It was all uphill but as the weather was perfect and steepness wasn't too bad so the ride went pretty well.

After Victoria Pass, I enjoyed the smooth decent for a while. Frenchmans Cap (1,446m) appeared on my right hand side. It's Tasmania's highest cliff. The shape looked like a french beret. Interesting!

Interesting View - Frenchmans Cap

There was heaps of rivers on the way as well. Today's ride was like a condensation of Tasmanian gems. I am glad to have this ride in the perfect weather condition today as it often gets miserable weather even in the middle of summer.

Gordon River

On the last part of climbing, 3 massive mountains Mt William I (1,324m), London Bluff (1,310m), and Mt William II (1,359m) on the right. That was like three mountain brothers.

Mt William I (1,324m), London Bluff (1,310m), and Mt William II (1,359m)

I got to today's bed, Lake St Clair at 3.00pm. The camp site was on the beach of the lake. So the lake was just in front of me. At the camp site, I met a group of friendly trekking blolkes who had just done the Overland Track (One of the Tassie's famous trekking route which starts from the base of Cradle Mountain and ends at Lake St Clair. Duration of the trek is 4-6 days) . They were walking four to five days to get here. That must have been a great trip. I am not into trekking and obviously I can't walk that long with massive amount of luggage, but its the way to be wild.... one day...

Lake St Clair is the deepest lake is not a massive lake but in Australia with the maximum depth of 300m. I am explore the lake a bit tomorrow. I've got enough today.

See you tomorrow - Lake St Clair

Today's Route

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Monday, 1 February 2010

Day 9 Rosbery to Queenstown

Date: 14/JAN/2010
Route:Rosebery - Zeehan - Queenstown
Distance: 76km
Accident: 0
Puncture: 0
Weather: Cloudy then fine
Accommodation: Queenstown Cabin and Tourist Park ($10 / Unpowered)

I had a laziest morning today by sleeping in till 8.30am! That's because here in the West gets really cold in the morning. It was too cold to do something, even going to the toilet. I assume it was around 5 c ish. I can't imagine living here in the middle of winter.

Today's ride was relatively shorter in distance and less hillier as I decided not to go to Strahan. (Strahan is located in the very west of Tasmania, probably the most popular tourist town in the western Tasmania with its famous Macquarie Habour) I stopped by Zeehan on the way. Zeehan was once a massive town with the population of 10,000 with the mining industry. Time went by, as the minging industry diclined, the town became smaller and smaller and quieter and quieter. Now, Zeehan has a lot of empty house with handful of people.

Empty Town - Zeehan

I stopped by a lunch bar there. I had the traditional burger (hamburger + bacon + onion + cheese), which was really good. The meat was thick and well cooked and bread was lightly toasted.


I arrived in Queenstown at about 3.30pm. As usualy I pitched the tent, took shower, and wondered around the town. Queenstown is such a messy town with massive bald mountain and polluted (looking) water. Tourists are normally hate this town, but I found this place unusal and because of that I liked it. It is extremely to see a bald mountain in the middle of Tasmanian Rainforest area. Whatching the mountain brings me feel the history of prosperity and dicline of the town.


That's it. Tomorrow, I am heading to the famous 99-Bend Road, many hills, rivers, mountains, and water falls so It will be the biggest highlghts of RDU2!

Chips 'n' Gravy and Souvulaki - Tea

Today's Route

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