Saturday, 22 August 2009

Planning to walk the overland track in tasmania

Official Links


  • 2 December: Depart 07:15 arrive Launceston 10:45
  • 14 December: Depart Launceston 11:20 arrive 15:00


Launceston backpackers on 2 Dec and 10 Dec. Booked for 5 people. 103 Canning St. Launceston, (03) 6334 2327.


Tiger Wilderness Tours Tasmania. Lee Freestone 03 6394 3212.

Pickup from outside the Launceston backpackers on 3 December, then from Lake St Clair Visitors Centre on 10 December back to Launceston.

Shuttle is $100/person ($40 there, $60 back), which is cheap because we're combining with some other walkers. Each person to pay full amount in cash on the return leg.

There will be an additional cost for park entry. If we get a 8-person pass this will be about $60 for all of us. I'm also going to hire an EPIRB (about $40).


Booked ferry from Narcissus to Lake St. Clair vistors centre for 3:30pm pickup of 5 people. Paid in advance $35/pp. Booking phone number: (03) 6289 1137.

Outdoors Store

Paddy Pallin @ 110 George Street Launceston does gear hire and is a good place to buy stove fuel. Most of the shuttle bus companies can provide fuel and even recycle what you don't use.

Common gear
See my packing list for everything I am taking, below is a list of the common things that only one of us needs to carry.

  • Stoves: G (coleman propane), B (MSR shellite)
  • B: Orange plastic poo trowel
  • G: Sea-to-summit waterproof map case
  • B: 1st aid kit
  • G,L: Steripen
  • Someone: EPIRB (hiring)

The best blogs, photos, and maps

Day 1 (3 Dec): Dove Lake to Waterfall Valley Hut

Side trip to Cradle Mountain summit - 3 hours return from Kitchen Hut. Climbing cradle is apparently steep and exposed, with lots of rock scrambling.

Day 2 (4 Dec): Waterfall Valley Hut to Windermere Hut (7.5 kms, 3 hours +side trips)

Side trip up Barn Bluff - 2.5 hours return from Cradle Cirque. Side trip to Lake Will - 1 hour return from main track. Without side trips the distance from waterfall valley to windemere is very short: a friend of mine did the side trip to lake will and got to windemere by 10:30am. They then decided to push on to Pelion Hut, which she says was a mistake since it was a long way and resulted in some injuries. Looking at photos I'm not sure Lake Will is worth it, but apparently Barn Bluff is awesome.

Day 3 (5 Dec): Windermere Hut to Pelion Hut (16.5kms, 6 hours)

Day 4 (6 Dec): Pelion Hut to Kia-Ora Hut (9kms, 3 hrs +side trips)

Side trip up Mt. Ossa - 3.5hrs return from Pelion Gap.

Day 5 (7 Dec): Kia-Ora Hut to Bert Nichols (Windy Ridge) Hut (10.0kms, 4 hrs +side trips)

Side trips to D'Alton and Fergusson Falls (1.5 hours return) and Hartnett Falls (1hr return).

Day 6 (8 Dec): Bert Nichols Hut to Pine Valley Hut

The Labyrinth! In the words of my friend:
The Pine Valley is a MUST as a side trip. The Labyrinth is fascinating and makes you think you are in Jurassic Park. DO NOT go to the Labyrinth if the weather is inclement. It is called the Labyrinth for a reason and a number of hikers have been lost (permanently) up there. I did not do the Acropolis but don't think I would have made it anyway due to the need to scramble and the heights thing.

Day 7 (9 Dec): The Acropolis, return to Pine Valley Hut

Day 8 (10 Dec): Pine Valley Hut to Narcissus Hut and boat along Lake St. Clair

Some more words of wisdom:
The most boring part of the walk is the end bit. Honestly, even though you may feel like you need to say you have done the whole thing, I would suggest catching the boat out of there. The only thing is that in peak times the boat fills up quickly so that on the day we walked out we pretty much ran to the boat (from Pine Valley) to guarantee a spot....the smart thing would have been to book it before we left.

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