SUNDAY 2 JANUARY HOBART
We relaxed on the morning. After a sleep-in, John seemed to be feeling better.
Consulted the various books and guides, and after an early lunch, then headed off.
We drove up Berriedale Road, towards Collinsvale. I had seen a Myrtle Forest Picnic Area, and walk, briefly mentioned in a tourist pamphlet, and it did not seem very far from the van.
Berriedale Road became Glenlusk Road and then that became Collinsvale Road. We kept going through the hamlet of Collinsvale, just hoping we were going the right way, and looking for signs. My pamphlet had basically just said it was beyond Collinsvale!
The road became a single strip of bitumen, then just over a single lane bridge, a Springdale Road sign also had a Myrtle Forest pointer on it. For the first time, I became optimistic we might actually find the place! Then we saw a road marked Myrtle Forest Road. Looked promising, even if it was really only a narrow lane. This soon became unsealed, but we continued on, to the picnic area.
It was a really pretty drive to get up there, once we left the suburbs behind, through valleys and hill country, some forested but much of it farms, until we got close to our destination.
Parked Truck at the picnic area, then walked up the Myrtle Forest Track for about an hour, beside a creek with lots of waterfalls. The track was slowly rising, quite scrambly and rough, and as we were walking through myrtle beech forest – as you would expect! – it was quite dimly lit. It was very pretty, and reminiscent, in parts, of the southern Overland Track, where the same forests occur.
The track continued on to Collins Cap, but that was too far for us today, so we retraced our route. It took us less time to get back to Truck, as the track was downhill all the way.
On the track we met a couple of walkers who told us where we actually were – in the back part of Wellington Park, the reserve that covers much of the range country behind Hobart. They showed us the walk, described in a book of Hobart/Mt Wellington Walks. It had been a fluke to find out about it the way I did – we nearly missed out on a gem of an experience.
We spotted our first new bird of the 21st century on the walk – the Tasmanian form of the white eye.
Returned to camp the way we had come. It would be all too easy to get lost in the maze of little roads in these ranges behind Hobart. It only took us a total of 35kms round trip today, to find such a wonderful bush experience.
John had been feeling fairly well when we started the walk, but was quite ill again by the time we had driven back to the van. He had tummy gripes, a temperature, joint pains. I still suspect some type of food poisoning.
So John only wanted a light tea – soup. I had a corn cob, too.
It was fairly early to bed for him – and for me because he is disturbed by the light if I stay up.