|Start Day - 1
|After being away for 3 months, we made our way back to Tassmania after spending Easter in Melbourne. This time the plan was to get a taste of the Western Arthurs, by walking out to Lake Oberon and throwing in a day of exploration. That was the plan, in reality bad weather, a Melbourne cold and lack of fitness saw us make it to Lake Cygnus with a side trip to Mt Hayes. A good achievement, but disappointing after our achievements of the South Coast Track and Mt Anne at Christmas. Just goes to show you that you can’t let up in the pursuit of fitness and Tasmanian walks…
|A full car park at Huon campground. Here is where the plan unfolded, despite our organisation for a 9am start, my cold and resulting fatigue saw me insist on a sleep in, and a hearty breakfast at Banjo’s, so we started at 12:30 instead.
|The start of the walk went through some kind of rain forest. Very pretty and in contrast to the button grass plains that were to come.
|Mt Anne in the distance. We had a beautiful clear day, making us particularly disappointed that we didn’t get an early start to take advantage of it.
|Western Arthurs up ahead.
|Views aplenty of the Western Arthurs.
|Great track at the start, with the duckboards enabling some fast walking.
|Across the button grass are the Western Arthurs!
|Along the way we past two groups of walkers returning to the car park. Three men had attempted Federation Peak in foul weather and were returning early, while two women had performed the Lake Oberon circuit in the great weather over Easter – it all comes down to luck!
|The clouds are congregating over Mt Anne.
|Having lunch with Mt Anne behind us.
|Western Arthurs with some slightly ominous looking clouds above them.
|A bit of mud here, just to keep you on your toes!
|The Western Arthurs up ahead, with a nice dry track to walk on.
|Button grass in front of the mountains.
|Here we are at Junction creek. We decide that given it was already 3:30, and our pace to reach Junction Creek was poor, we had little chance of reaching a good campground on the Western Arthurs. There is a campground at the foot of Morainne A that received poor reviews from a fellow walker, so we stopped for the day.
|Here is a well photographed group of signs. Western Arthurs in the background, with the left arrow pointing to McKays Track and the right arrow to the Port Davey Track.
Close Day - 1 <
|> Start Day - 2
|Here is our campsite at Junction Creek. During dinner on the first night the rains started and we retreated to the tent. Then the thunder started in the distance (at the Western Arthurs of course), as a pool of water accumulated under the tent. When the rain slowed down we moved the tent to higher ground – got to love those free-standing tents!
|Starting out on Day 2 the views are not quite as clear as the previous day, although far more spectacular.
|There are some higher shrubs to walk through, on the way to Moraine A.
|This mud wasn’t here yesterday! Well certainly not as bad anyway. Some more regret about not getting the early start on the first day is experienced!
|Some of the impact of the fires through the Western Arthurs can be seen here.
|The Western Arthurs are back there, behind the clouds.
|At least it should be fairly cool as we climb the 600ms up Moraine A!
|A promising look of blue sky gives us some encouragement. Maybe there will be views at the top? Maybe we won’t be rained on today?
|A muddy section of the track.
|Low cloud ahead of the Western Arthurs.
|The track to the right continues on the Port Davey track. We went straight, up Morraine
|The Port Davey Track is looking quite muddy.
|We can see the climb ahead. It’s a short climb, but the fear of the lack of fitness is with us.
|At the bottom of Morraine A. We were at last not regretting staying at Junction Creek last night after speaking to people who camped at the foot of Morraine A, who experienced the thunderstorm. Our sheltered spot at Junction Creek looked much better than the single muddy spot at Morraine A.
|The climb up Morraine A begins. While my Melbourne cold effects are wearing off, the lack of fitness picks up.
|A bit of sun comes through, but that can not be blamed for our poor effort during the climb.
|Here I struggle on behind Luca, who despite his own lack of fitness manages the climb respectably.
|Here I am ahead of Luca after he kindly takes the “snacks” container, sparing me from 2kgs of weight. It makes a big difference.
|The first rise on Moraine A.
|The track back down. Looks like we have made some distance now.
|The clouds linger above us ominously.
|The clouds linger above us ominously.
|Quartzite rock and shrub marking one of the ridges on the Western Arthurs.
|We are getting very close to the top now. The relief is enormous!
|The day is looking quite poor again, and if it wasn’t for the climb we would be quite cold.
|We near the top and head around the boulders to the right.
|Near the top there is more evidence of bushfires.
|Some of the shrubs near the top of the Western Arthurs.
|At the top the pack is shed and the arms are thrown in the air!
|Rocks litter the ground everywhere. The Lord of the Rings style views appear.
|The track is clearly marked for us today, as reasonable visibility is available.
|A bit of exploring at the top is enjoyed as we relax following the tough climb to the top. With a few short breaks we reached the top in just under 2 hours. Not a bad effort due to the self-imposed adversity we had overcome!
|Looking off the Western Arthurs.
|The plateau at the top is very impressive.
|Some plants are growing along side the rocks. The alpine plants are very pretty, and fragile. The contrast of colours is very impressive.
|A bit of blue sky up ahead.
|Lake Pedder to the North, with Scott’s Peak coming up out of the water.
|The plateau is very impressive.
|Scott’s peak again. We are less than 11kms from the start of the walk, even less as the crow flies.
|Day - 2 Continues >