We woke at 7, feeling the groggy effects of the surplus amount of beer on offer last night, and prepared our bags for a day of hiking through Freycinet National Park.
Phillip drove us to the park entrance, 30 minutes from the beach shack, and dropped us off at the Freycinet information centre. Here, we picked up a map, got some advice of one of the park rangers and started our 3 hour hike to Wineglass Bay- the most popular trek within the park.
We walked for about 40 minutes along a road that ran parallel to the beach, before reaching the official start to the walk.
We then followed the inclining ‘Wineglass’ hike which took us inland, away from the beaches and through fern forests, before revealing a misty, mountainside perspective of the beached coves. The hike was fairly straight-forward- not particularly challenging nor too steep- but one that revealed continuously spectacular views.
30 minutes later and we had reached the Wineglass Bay lookout- one of the postcard images of Tasmania. Usually this view is laden with sunshine and clear skies. Alas, we weren’t blessed with such perfect weather, but the low lying cloud added further dramatic impetuous to the surrounding moutainscape. It was indeed a view that was worthy of the early start and quickly diminished any hangover from the night before.
We then descended another 30 minutes to the bay itself; We hiked down through a thicket of Eucalyptus forests and eventually reached the sandy beached cove. It was stunning and reminded me like the scenes from ‘LOST”. We were rewarded for our early rise with an almost deserted landscape and spent a good hour by the sea, combining walking along the beach and over the moss-stained rocks with relaxing and marveling at the views.
As the crowds began to pick up and with only an hour to return back to meet Phillip, we retreated from our paradise cove and headed back up the mountain. A hike that took 30 minutes to descend, took us less than 20 to climb, as we paced, sweat-soaked to the top, where we took a justifiable rest and one last look across the clouded bay.
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We completed the retracing of our hike and met with Phillip as proposed at the park entrance once again. He then drove us the short drive to Coles Bay, an affluent and popular boating area with views that stretched across the entire inlets and bays. Here, we had lunch- a steak sandwich with an accompanying beer- eating with the perfect backdrop of the beached bay and dolomite hazards.
Completing our action packed day, we drove back through the Tassie countryside to Launceston, where we once again perched ourselves out on the veranda and saw the day out with another terrific home-cooked dinner from Phillipa.