Initial Thoughts on Tasmania
We arrived blurry eyed but rested all the same following the nine-hour trip across Bass Strait and were thrilled to be the third vehicle to drive off the Spirit of Tasmania. The ferry had 330 vehicles on board. That was nine days ago and I cannot believe the last week has gone by so fast. Although we’ve not been idle, we have been isolated (of sorts) and hence, I now feel like I have to play catch ups. So here goes:
|Launceston||Monday – Tuesday||Oh My Gosh – where’s Kmart!|
|Low Head||Wednesday||No communications due to high winds.|
|Swimcart Beach||Thursday – Sunday||No power, no phone, no internet.|
Thoughts on Location No 20
After arriving in Davonport early last Monday morning, we decided to drive directly to Launceston where we stayed at the Big4 Launceston Holiday Park. It was cool when we arrived and enough so that our first stop was KMart to buy a couple of pairs of track suit pants and long-sleeved shirts.
On Tuesday morning it was 6°C (42.8°F). Oh My Gosh! I lay on the bed shivering and had to ask Dean to put the heater on. This is not what we expected but I guess we should have realised that Tasmania would be cold, or at the very least, we should have realised that it would be cold for a couple of Queenslanders used to living in the heat. A little research tells me that Tasmania lies at 42.0000° S – the same latitude as New Zealand and is only 3,443 km (2,139.3 miles) from Antarctica* (see footnote) – no wonder I was cold.
Not to be deterred by the temperature though, we ventured out and spent several hours at Cateract Gorge Reserve right in the heart of Launceston – an absolute delight that we stumbled across quite by accident.
We followed the Zig Zag Track, walking towards Kings Bridge and then back up the Cateract Walk on the western side of the gorge. It was the best thing we could have done to warm up and I’ve posted some photos on the Photography page – Enjoy.
Thoughts on Location No 21
Low Head, George Town, Tasmania
When leaving Launceston, we decided to drive up the West Tamar Highway to do nothing more than to drive along all 10 or so kilometres (6.3 miles) of Batman Highway. Halfway along you find Batman Bridge that crosses the Tamar River joining the West Tamar Highway with the East Tamar Highway.
Having reached the east side we stopped and walked back across the bridge so I could photograph Dean in front of the sign.
(This bridge was also named after John Batman – see Where You’ll Find Batman Park.)
We then continued up the East Tamar Highway and finally reached Low Head, just a short drive up the road (relatively speaking). We then spent the night at the Low Head Solar Caravan and Cabin Village and I must say that, at a cost of only $15 for the night, it was an absolute bargain. The predicted gale force winds (35 – 40 knots) were incredible, whipping the sand off the beach and shoving our mini home along and across the road. Thank goodness Dean is comfortable with driving and towing because there is no way I could have.
Thoughts on Location No 22
Swimcart Beach, Bay of Fires, Tasmania
In seven words: An absolute must – DO NOT drive past. Alas though, this location was so wonderful, I’ve just decided I’ll not condense my thoughts here.
Expect another update to follow soon.
Footnote: By comparison and just for giggles, the distance from Tasmania to Antarctica (3,443 km/2,139.3 miles) is only slightly greater than the distance from Cape York in Queensland to Melbourne in Victoria – 3,023 km (1,878.7 miles) and only slightly less than the flight distance from Brisbane in Queensland to Perth in Western Australia – 3,609.7 km ( 2,243 miles) and finally, just for those overseas, the distance from New York to Monterrey in Mexico is 3,987.9 km (2,478 miles), so I guess I’ve every right to feel chilly when a cold front moves in and brisk winds blow straight up from Antarctica.
(Yes I had a huge amount of fun exercising my brain and researching these distances on Google maps.)