Archive for the ‘Excursion’ Category
We recently went on an excursion to Hobart, the capital city of Tasmania.In Hobart we made certain to visit the German Bakery in Sandy Bay (beestings, lager sticks and pretzels, almond horns and very nice bread), and then to the famous Salamanca Markets (which, I have to admit, had quite impressive array of strange and interesting things). On the way back we dropped in on the Freycinet Peninsula, and hiked to Wineglass Bay, crossed the isthmus to the other side (Oyster Bay), and then around back to the car-park. Exhausting walk.
On the Saturday before last we decided to climb Mt Arthur — one of the peaks visible from our window, and about half an hours drive from Launceston. It was a lovely walk — about 8 hours. We explored a side trail that led to one side of the peak, and then backtracked and went on the regular track to the top. We had our lunch sitting on the verandah of a small fire-spotting station. The vegetation on the way up was magical — a real enchanted forest feel with lichen and moss covering almost every branch and stone, and the sun lit it up all gold and green. Fantastic!
A striking feature for me was mounds of lichen growing along the ground, quite large, like alien ground coral reefs. Very interesting to see.
All pictures taken with our new camera.
I’ve been getting behind on posting what I’ve been up to for the last few weeks, so here’s a quick summary:
We hiked up Ben Lomond (named after the Scottish mountain). There’s skiing up there in colder months, and we were delighted to find there was still some snow there. We walked from the car-park up into the saddle, where we found a long plateau of rocks, shrubs and pools of water with melting snow. Then down again to the ski village, and a trek back to the car along the roads (including a rather dizzying zig-zag). Lovely to find some snow, and there wasn’t any bitter coldness to go with it!
I was able to acquire more excellent ginger beer here. Yay!
Wynyard Tulip Festival
We did a weekend trip to Wynyard for their Tulip Festival. There was food, bands, jugglers, animals, carnival rides and constant helicopter fly-overs. We visited a brilliant photographic exhibition and chatted with the photographers, increasing our determination to get ourselves a better camera. Also took in the art exhibition which had some nice pieces.
We stayed overnight and then the next day went on to visit …
Stanley is a quiet town with historic ruins and “the nut”, a large flat-top feature.
Last weekend we had a go at some archery, cable hang-gliding and went on a walk to Badger Head (mistakenly wound up at Bakers Beach due to an error in the guidebook, but we encountered a large number of wombats and played with our new camera so we didn’t feel it wasted).
We’re really liking our new camera!
The day after my birthday we decided to revist a hike we did around the same time in 2007: climb Mt. Magog in the Stirling Ranges, and then trek across the ridge to Mt. Talyuberlup, and then down to the road, and back along to the Mt. Magog carpark.
Quite a lot of fungi about, but didn’t go mad photographing them this time … sometimes it is nice just to walk!
Staying at home during severe weather and enjoying hot chocolate while relaxing in front of a heater would be the sensible thing to do, so we decided to venture out and revisit the Little Grove to Sandpatch walk we did in June of last year (the write up is yet another victim of the Server Crash of ‘09).
The walk takes us round from Little Grove (on the harbour) across the Torndirrup Peninsula to Sandpatch (the location of the Albany wind farm), and around in a loop. Most of it is comprised of the Bibbulumun track, which is well signposted and maintained. We started the walk at 10:00 and finished about 14:30; and it’s about 20 km all told.
On Saturday we decided to do the Luke Pen Walk along the Kalgan River. Every time I’ve been to the Kalgan, I’ve been struck by how beautiful it is. The water is often clear and very reflective, and the bushland appears relatively unspoiled (bar some weed encroachment from neighboring farmland).
April and June are fantastic if you’re interested in fungi. Last year I uploaded photographs of Honey Fungus, Scotsmans Beard, a violet bolete, and some small fungi with bright red caps. One of those photographs placed in the Albany Show in the “plants” category. Unfortunately, the server crash in February wiped that post. However, the Kalgan River once again did not dissapoint, and we chanced across some interesting specimens …
On Sunday, we did the first climb in the Stirling Ranges this year! We did Mt Hassell, which is a relatively quick and easy one (847m according to Wikipedia). We took about an hour getting to the top, and 35 minutes back down — to be home in time for lunch (herb bread cheesies with warming tomato and capsicum soup) with friends.
We took the wombats with us, and as usual, they entertained us with their antics.
There’s Mt Toolbrunup in the background, and me with my new haircut, which was particularly awful this time
On Thursday evening, Sue and I went to the Circus Joseph Ashton. It’s been a long time since I’ve been to a traditional cirus (the last two times was the Cirque de Soleil who are extraordinary but very “arty” which can get tiresome after a while). It was a four-peaked big-top, pitched over grass.
Some fun clown acts (antics with a floppy raggedy-doll were hilarious; a SuperWash 3000 washing machine act which shrunk clothes and people, and a brilliant knife-throwing act that was an enormous joke — I’m being deliberately vauge here since it’s not fair to spoil the punchlines and comic dimensions of these things). There was also juggling (balls, pins, fire sticks), acrobatics, performing animals (dogs, miniature-horses, and some rather reluctant goats). And some contortion/balancing. We had traditional circus “cuisine” — hot chips and hot-dogs, although we eschewed the fairy-floss!
Anyway, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. A nice, fun evening.