Day 49 – Strahan to Cradle Mountain (137 km)

So, last night after I finished catching up on a little blogging I headed back to the tent to find most of the camping sites are now occupied through some late arrivals. To the side and behind me are 2 cars with boats (cos Strahan is seaside). Not that I could have done anything about it, but that should have been a red flag.

At 3am they both started their diesels and towed their clanky boat trailers over the rough gravel carpark road to head off for fishing for the day (probs). I was awake from then on. While it gave me a chance to completely catch up on the blogs, it left me a little shattered.

I’d spoken to a few people in the park about the boat cruise. All said it was worth it, but it did drag on a little – scheduled for 6 hours from start to finish, with foot, off-boat excursions, etc. Thinking about it, I’d rather wait until wifey was with me. So, given my “mood” from the early awakening I gave the boat a miss.

Instead, I drove around Strahan a little more grabbing some piccies…

…fueled up, then headed for Cradle Mountain. Of course, the roads and scenery continued to be spectacular.

Arriving at Zeehan I had a drink and some fruit, looked around a bit (another town with a bit of history).

A few blokes walking past remarked about how far from home I was, so we chatted for a bit. I took the opportunity to ask which was the “best” way to Cradle Mountain… knowing that Diesel probably went Rosebery (who left me a message saying it was “amazing” again). I had originally planned heading towards Corinna (but not actually going there due to gravel) and passing by the dam. The two blokes said that’s all it was, and that the other way was much better. So, that’s what I did.

Good choice.

I eventually took the turn off to Cradle Mountain, but after several arguments with my GPS again I consulted Mr OzFox who gave it to me straight. On the way in is a lookout that gives the first proper glimpse:

Now, why is it called “Cradle Mountain”? People have referenced a baby’s cradle, whereas Tassie Parks refers to a miners cradle – that, I can kinda see.

Then into town. I checked into the caravan park, pitched the tent, then walked down to the Visitors’ Centre and caught a shuttle bus to Ronny Creek. From there I headed to the Waldheim (the Austrian who discovered Cradle Mountain) Hut.

 

Lots of wombats – maybe 20 seen in 40 minutes – and very friendly too. Some were also carrying young in their pouch.

The hut itself was well preserved with simple displays.

I then headed back to Ronny Creek and took the boardwalk back to the next “station” towards the Visitors’ Centre where I caught the last bus back.

It was only a quick intro to the national park, but it’s already made an impression. Even when I returned to the tent this little pair was waiting for me.

Tomorrow I intend to walk a lot further, but not to the peak – far too much work for this fat boy.