Out and About

Hiking the Overland Track in Tasmania

Back in December, as part of my holidays, I hiked the Overland Track in Tasmania from Cradle Mountain to Lake St. Clair over a period of 7 days with a group of 7 other friends. We’d been planning this since earlier in the year and booked our spots on the track the very first day bookings opened.

We headed to Launceston on Boxing Day and stayed at a motel for the night. The next morning, we were picked up by a bus and taken to Cradle Valley. Unlike some others, we decided to stay the night in a cabin and start the track the next day. Instead, we spent the day walking around Dove Lake taking in some of the gorgeous views of Cradle Mountain and the lake itself.

Cradle Mountain

Cradle Mountain

 

Cradle Mountain

Another angle of Cradle Mountain

On 28th December 2014, we commenced the Overland Track at around 7:30 in the morning. Day 1 was about 16 to 18 kilometres to Waterfall Valley Hut. The weather was sunny and warm. The walk was moderately hard — the track was not the best in some parts and I guess, given that the backpack was at its heaviest on the day, it made it slightly tougher. There were some beautiful views along the way. Unfortunately, I didn’t make it up Cradle Mountain because my fear of heights kicked in and well, half way up I was told it got steeper and more difficult. So I chickened out and waited for the rest of the group. By the time we got to the hut, I was exhausted. It was good though to get a spot in the hut.

Overland Track

Commencing the track

 

Crater Lake

Crater Lake

Day 2 was a shorter walk of just about 9 kilometres.and we made it to the second hut — Windemere Hut — well before lunch. This was partly because it was a small hut and we wanted to beat the rain. Turns out, it was a good idea, because soon after our arrival, it began raining. And it didn’t stop.

The rain continued into Day 3 with unbearable winds and freezing temperatures. I hated Day 3 because of the weather. I was cold and my fingers felt frozen. I was seriously concerned about frost bite and had visions of having my fingers chopped off every time I couldn’t feel them. Wet boots, wet socks, fighting water — it was miserable. And I wasn’t a happy chappy. There were moments when I found myself wishing I’d rather be at work instead of hiking in that weather. Luckily, the hut we were aiming to get to this day — Pelion Hut — was a lot larger than the previous one. The walk though, was also a lot longer. After about 5.5 hours and 16 kilometres later, we arrived. I had never been happier to strip off my clothes but really, really longed for a hot shower.

Overland Track

Wallaby outside Waterfall Valley Hut

 

Mount Oakleigh

Mount Oakleigh

According to our plan, Day 4 was a rest day. Which meant another day at Pelion Hut. We decided on a day walk instead and headed towards Mount Ossa. Four out of the eight of us were a bit lazy {and still wearing wet boots} and therefore didn’t end up climbing the mountain instead choosing to relax in the sun {yes, the sun!!} at Pelion Gap. My mood improved on this day thanks to the sunshine and therefore, an opportunity to dry my wet boots and socks! The view of Mount Oakleigh was amazing on a sunny day! We rang in the New Year here at about 8 p.m. with a bottle of champers. Yes, champagne. Some of the guys in our group won a trivia comp at Cradle Valley and shared the load over the first three days.

Mount Ossa

Mount Ossa

Unfortunately, Day 5 wasn’t the best with rain deciding to visit us again. It wasn’t as heavy as Day 3 but was still annoying enough. Plus, thanks to the previous rain, the track was horrendous in some parts. We had to fight through bogs and well, as luck would have it, I stacked it at one point having a mud-covered arse for most of the way! After what seemed like eternity, we completed about 10 kilometres to get to Kia Ora. This was another tiny hut but by midday, the sun began to shine again and most people chose to camp.

On Day 6, we made our way to Burt Nichols’ Hut. This is one of the newest huts and was one of the biggest. We had sunshine all the way through, saw some beautiful waterfalls and while we still had to battle a rough track, the fact that we had one more sleep to go was just about enough to help me endure the difficulty. It wasn’t too long a walk and we were at the hut by lunch time. The views from the deck were spectacular.

Ferguson Falls

Ferguson Falls

 

Overland Track

Acropolis

Day 7 was our final day and I woke up bright and chirpy. I knew by the end of the day, there would be a hot shower and real food. I walked the fastest on this day — partly due to excitement and partly because it was a sunny day and one of the guys saw a brown snake on the track — which freaked me out and made me keep up with them! You know, just in case I’m lagging behind and get bitten. Even though we’d booked the ferry at 3:30 from Narcissus Hut, we were fortunate to find spaces in earlier ferries. Two of the guys — JE and JM — and me arrived first and caught the 11:45 ferry. I don’t think I was happier than when we reached Lake St Clair and I got to use proper toilets that flushed. And of course, drink some ciders and eat some proper food.

Overland Track

Waiting for the ferry at the end

The Overland Track took a lot more out of me mentally than physically. Apart from the first day, I was physically ok. I kept to the back of the line and well, one of my friends JC did help by carrying my 850 gm tent on the last 3 days. But after day 1, I had been worried I wouldn’t manage physically. In the end, I was mentally a bit over it. Which is a shame because the scenery at some points was great. I think I learnt a lot of lessons which I will leave for another post.

In the end, the group of friends I was with made the entire trip worthwhile.

Until next time,

Cheers!!!

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38 Comments

  • Reply
    nabanita
    January 15, 2015 at 12:14 am

    Beautiful ! It must have been quite an experience… I’m not much of an outdoor person but I understand the draw…
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  • Reply
    nabanita
    January 15, 2015 at 12:14 am

    Beautiful ! It must have been quite an experience… I’m not much of an outdoor person but I understand the draw…
    nabanita recently posted…Come live Quikr in Bangalore!My Profile

  • Reply
    Kathy S Combs
    January 15, 2015 at 5:45 am

    WOW what an amazing adventure! The scenery was amazing! Sounds like a marvelous holiday. ♥
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  • Reply
    Kathy S Combs
    January 15, 2015 at 5:45 am

    WOW what an amazing adventure! The scenery was amazing! Sounds like a marvelous holiday. ♥
    Kathy S Combs recently posted…Surprise VisitorMy Profile

  • Reply
    DeNae
    January 15, 2015 at 7:15 am

    Wow. Stunning photographs. It is a delight to see another part of the world on your blog. I’m interested to hear the lessons and glad you had an enjoyable trip overall.
    DeNae recently posted…Run Happy. Be Strong.My Profile

    • Reply
      Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life
      January 15, 2015 at 9:15 pm

      Thanks DeNae…and there were some days I didn’t get opportunities to take some of the beautiful photos. But hopefully, I’ve memorised them well enough!

  • Reply
    DeNae
    January 15, 2015 at 7:15 am

    Wow. Stunning photographs. It is a delight to see another part of the world on your blog. I’m interested to hear the lessons and glad you had an enjoyable trip overall.
    DeNae recently posted…Run Happy. Be Strong.My Profile

    • Reply
      Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life
      January 15, 2015 at 9:15 pm

      Thanks DeNae…and there were some days I didn’t get opportunities to take some of the beautiful photos. But hopefully, I’ve memorised them well enough!

  • Reply
    simple girl
    January 15, 2015 at 4:51 pm

    Omg.. You are soo brave sanch.. I can imagine the challenge …The pictures are gorgeous though …
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  • Reply
    simple girl
    January 15, 2015 at 4:51 pm

    Omg.. You are soo brave sanch.. I can imagine the challenge …The pictures are gorgeous though …
    simple girl recently posted…The first timeMy Profile

  • Reply
    Amrita
    January 15, 2015 at 6:50 pm

    Kudos to you for taking on and finishing this challenging trek! I really admire your spirit and of course the awesome photos from your trips!
    Happy New Year and hope this year brings more adventures!

    Cheers
    Amrita

  • Reply
    Amrita
    January 15, 2015 at 6:50 pm

    Kudos to you for taking on and finishing this challenging trek! I really admire your spirit and of course the awesome photos from your trips!
    Happy New Year and hope this year brings more adventures!

    Cheers
    Amrita

  • Reply
    Jacana
    January 15, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    Well done – that must have felt like a great accomplishment. I do like to walk, but not in cold and rain. Well done you.
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  • Reply
    Vanessa
    January 16, 2015 at 9:44 am

    Good on you for making it through the walk! I would be *way* too unfit for that haha. It looks like a gorgeous place.
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    • Reply
      Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life
      January 18, 2015 at 9:36 pm

      I must admit I was worried about my fitness because I hadn’t done an overnight hike since October. Working out at the gym is never the same as hiking in the bush! It was gorgeous though…

  • Reply
    Min@WriteoftheMiddle
    January 16, 2015 at 9:49 am

    Oh it looks beautiful there! Lovely photos! Well done with walking the track! I posted just last week about hubby and I planning a trip to Tasmania in late April. If there is anywhere you highly recommend that we should go or see I’d love it if you could let me know! 🙂
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    • Reply
      Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life
      January 18, 2015 at 9:34 pm

      Oh cool…you’ll love it. Tassie was great. I recommed Hobart, Bruny Island and Port Arthur — all places we visited over three days post-hike. I’ll be blogging about them shortly. Apart from that, I hear Strahn is good as is Devonport.

  • Reply
    Emily @ Have A Laugh On Me
    January 16, 2015 at 4:46 pm

    What amazing memories you are making, go the champers in the bush! You have to look at doing some in NZ, a lot of this scenery reminds me of the South Island x
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    • Reply
      Sanch @ Living my Imperfect Life
      January 18, 2015 at 9:33 pm

      Oh definitely want to visit NZ and hike the Milford Sounds track for one. A colleague of mine tells me that it’s even more beautiful than Tassie…and I loved Tassie so I can imagine I’d fall in love with NZ. Aiming to go there in 2016 hopefully…

  • Reply
    Malinda @mybrownpaperpackages
    January 18, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    What an amazing experience. You certainly got some amazing photos to remember it by.

  • Reply
    Zita
    January 19, 2015 at 11:43 am

    I think you are pretty amazing for even just contemplating doing something like that! What an amazing experience and magnificent photos!
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  • Reply
    Deb @ inner compass designs
    January 20, 2015 at 8:39 pm

    Awesome. We loved cradle mountain and we were amazed at our kids and all the hiking they managed in Tasmania. When we had to sign in the register each day to say what walk we were doing we were always interested in those who ticked overland walk. Congrats on making it through. It rained a bit over Easter when we walked and I was grateful I had splurged at the gift store by buying a new jacket – waterproof and warm and so needed along with my warm hat.
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  • Reply
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  • Reply
    Rajlakshmi
    January 29, 2015 at 10:59 pm

    7 days of trek!! Kudos to you for completing it. I have never experienced this kind of adventure. Don’t know if I would ever manage it. But wow… that must have been quite an experience. Loved the pictures.

  • Reply
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    September 25, 2017 at 7:01 pm

    […] a lot of the Aussie bush particularly in the Blue Mountains but also down the south coast, Sydney, Tassie and Victoria. The Aussie bush is varied and filled with the sounds of birds and sights of trees and […]

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