Thoughts on Location No 29
Strahan, West Coast, Tasmania
We arrived in Strahan following a missed turn in the road on Wednesday, but unfortunately, the rain we had been experiencing in Hobart and New Norfolk followed us. It was such a shame as I’m sure this little town is quite pretty minus all the doom and gloom.
On Thursday we took a drive out to Ocean Beach where my seal stood and pined for a wave decent enough to warrant getting in and having a paddle. Truth be told though, the Roaring Forties were certainly roaring and the conditions were so terrible, he wouldn’t have considered getting in – ever!
Leaving the beach, we followed the road past the airport to the north side of Macquarie Heads and walked along the beach towards Hells Gates – as far as the tide would allow. Can you believe it was so cold we walked along the beach with beanies on our heads?
As the rain set in, we called it quits and retreated back to our mini home and hunkered down for the rest of the day, praying the rain would hold off on Friday so we could venture around the harbour, up the Gordon River and into the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area on a cruise with World Heritage Cruises, a family owned and operated company.
Friday early, really early, I poked my head out the door and saw stars and thought “Woohoo!”, a perfect day for a cruise. As it turned out, the weather wasn’t perfect, with rain rolling in evey now and then, but we enjoyed the day all the same.
The cruise included travelling across Macquarie Harbour (two and half times the size of Sydney Harbour), passing through Hells Gates and out into the rough waters of the Indian Ocean (or Southern Ocean – depending on who you talk to), a stop over at Sarah Island (a colonial penal colony and the setting for the novel “For the Term of His Natural Life” by Marcus Clarke), a trip up the Gordon River, crossing over into the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area where we had a walk on a raised platform through the rainforest, and along the way were provided with a sumptuous lunch.
A World Heritage Cruise
(Each photo contains a detailed explanation.)
(I wish I could share more photos, but I have to draw the line somewhere.)
We stayed at the Discovery Holiday Park while in Strahan and although we opted to say on the ‘beach’ side, it would have been nice to have been told that that side of the park was prone to being waterlogged. Given the amount of rain before we arrived, this should have been known to the owners and/or the staff in the office when we booked in.
The site we were assigned was below two inches of water and when I told the office this, and that we had placed our mini home onto another, slightly less wet site (there were plenty of vacant sites), I was surprised at the response “Oh yeah, those sites get wet.”
And still, we were not told that we would be dryer, and more comfortable, on the other side or the road, in another (sister) caravan park, equally as empty, but high and dry and without all the water. It’s a big shame we spent three days slopping through and sinking into grass and mud that could not hold another drop of rain. I’m surprised our mini home didn’t sink, but then we do have anti-sink plates the stabiliser legs are lowered onto. Without them, I think we’d have had a hard time getting off the site this morning.
We are now on our way to Cradle Mountain and I’m hoping when we get there the rain holds off and we have at least one clear, fine, sunny day.
Yes, I can absolutely believe you walked on the beach wearing beanies. But surely this wan’t the first time you’ve worn them on this trip? Or is it just the first time you’ve worn beanies on a beach?
As for the site fiasco, unfortunately I can easily believe that as well. Tasmania: awesome scenery; fantastic food; service…a little lacking sometimes when it comes to attention to detail.
At Cradle Mtn Lodge some years back we had an early an early dinner reservation. It was low season, so no chance the place was going to be full. When we arrived there were two families seated together on two large tables. We were seated right next to them. In a very large restaurant with no one else there, that’s where they sat a couple of unrelated diners. We shouldn’t have had to ask to move somewhere slightly more private.
But these little things don’t ruin a trip. Just don’t hold back in asking if there’s a better option if you’re not satisfied with what you’re given. 🙂
Terrific advise I’ll keep in mind. Perhaps we should have complained (a little louder).
Yes, this was the first time we’ve ever walked along a beach wearing beanies. Not the first time we’ve had them on our heads during the last three weeks. 🙂
Tonight it’s beanies, gloves, scarves, extra jumper and ugg boots – the whole kit and kaboodle. It’s 6:37 pm and already 2.8 degrees. I think it’s going to get a lot colder than the predicted 0, but more about that tomorrow.
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Love Tasmania’s west coast, great scenery and crayfishing. My brother lived in Queenstown for about 25 years and often used to visit. If the weather picks up do the Franklin river cruise, it is worth it.
It certainly is like nothing else.