Come walking with Horizon Guides, and experience the rich heritage of northwest Tasmania! From beautiful beaches to alpine meadows, from ancient forests to pristine rivers, we look forward to sharing with you the wonderful diversity of this region. There will be opportunity to breath, relax and absorb the essence of the ancient places we visit.

DAY 1 

Walk:               Walk to dinner through the Cataract Gorge Reserve

Trans:              None

Accom:            Penny Royal Motel: rooms with private facilities

Meals:              D

Our exploration of NW Tasmania begins in Launceston at the Pennyroyal Motel, located just a few minutes walk from the renowned Cataract Gorge Reserve. Following a tour briefing we’ll set off for a short walk along the Esk River to the Gorge Restaurant. Set amongst an arboretum of fine old park trees and right beside the river, it’s the perfect dinner venue. After dinner we’ll walk back to our motel.

DAY 2 

Walk:               Liffey Falls Track 2km return Easy. Marakoopa Cave Guided Tour 45 mins Easy

Trans:              Byways to Mole Creek Approx 125km

Accom:            Mole Creek Guesthouse (twin & queen rooms, mix of ensuite & share bathrooms)

Meals:              BLD

This morning we leave Launceston and take the main highway west before heading south on minor roads through Bracknell and Liffey. After a walk and lunch we travel through Deloraine and on to the village of Mole Creek where we stay for the next two nights of the trip. Before stopping here though, we’ll visit one of the hundreds of caves in the region. After this we return to Mole Creek and settle into our delightful accommodation. The creek behind the guesthouse is home to platypus and it is common for the patient observer to see them.

Liffey Falls:  Beginning at the Big Tree picnic area, this pretty, easy return walk is on a well-constructed track beside the Liffey River. The Beech forest is lush with an understorey of ferns and the falls tumbling over sedimentary strata are a lovely contrast.

DAY 3             

NB The walk for tomorrow is weather dependent so we will be watching the forecast closely. All being well, we will set out on ONE of the walks described below. See note: Weather and Mountain Warnings In the event that the weather is too hazardous, alternative activities will be arranged.

Walk:              Mt Roland 15.6km return 6 – 7 hrs Moderate - Challenging

Trans:             Approx 30min drive one way.

Accom:            Mole Creek Guesthouse (twin & queen rooms, mix of ensuite & share bathrooms)

Meals:             BLD

Mt Roland This return walk takes us to the summit of Mt Roland (1233m) along an old logging trail that contours beneath the steep plateau, crossing several crystal clear streams overhung with myrtle and sassafras. A small waterfall marks the transition to the alpine zone. Boardwalk and gravel track traverses an alpine plateau, culminating with a short boulder scramble to the summit of Mt Roland. The return walk is by the same track. The total elevation gain for the walk is 1010m however the majority of the walk is well graded.

NB This walk is mostly all above 1200m and we will need to be prepared for any kind of weather.

OR

Walk:              Walls of Jerusalem NP as far as Herod’s Gate Approx. 14kms return 7 -8 hrs. Moderate

Trans:              Approx 50 min drive to trail head

Accom:            Mole Creek Guesthouse

Meals:             BLD

This full day return walk into the Walls of Jerusalem is mostly on rock or boardwalk with almost no mud. Approximately an hour and a half of up hill work brings us to Trappers Hut. Shortly after, the plateau is gained and the walking is spectacular. The track winds through alpine vegetation and around lakes of all sizes with dramatic rock ramparts rising from the valley.

NB This area is mostly all above 1200m and we will need to be prepared for any kind of weather, including snow. As this is a return hike we can make the day shorter as necessary.

DAY 4 

Walk:              Rocky Cape NP Approx 2.5km circuit plus side trips from Sisters Beach to Anniversary Bay and caves. Moderate.

Trans:             Approx 200km

Meals:             BLD

Accom:            Abbey’s Cottages (self contained cottages, shared bathrooms)

After a buffet breakfast at the guesthouse we farewell the village of Mole Creek and head towards the coast. First stop is Sheffield, a town that reinvigorated its economy by turning blank building walls into mural spaces; a process that has been drawing visitors to the town ever since. We’ll stop here and allowing time for a wander in the main street and to enjoy some of the fine craft galleries and coffee shops. Continuing on, we meet the coast at the port city of Devonport and head west with views of Bass Strait all the way to Stanley. Just before Stanley is Rocky Cape NP. There are a range of short interesting walks to aboriginal caves at Sisters Beach and as well as a trail to Anniversary Bay over a headland featuring gnarled old banksias.

Once in Stanley we can settle into our charming accommodations. Dominating the landscape is ‘The Nut’ which can be reached via a steep footpath or a chairlift ($10 one way, $15 return). Whether you walk or ride, it’s well worth the trip up for the wildlife and the views. Dinner this evening will be at one of the excellent local restaurants.

DAY 5 

Walk:              Tarkine Wilderness Walk – local guide from Tarkine Wilderness Lodge

Trans:             Approx 1hr drive each way.

Meals:             BL (dinner will be at guest’s cost)

Accom:            Abbey’s Cottages (self contained cottages, shared bathrooms)

Today we join local guide Maree for an insight into the ancient and fragile world of the Tarkine. “During your walk you will see a large variety of plant species ranging from tall Eucalyptus, giant Myrtles, Sassafras, Blackwood and an abundance of ferns, mosses and lichens. The tracks meander gently under the rainforest canopy and pass by several small creeks and rivers.” (Thanks to Tarkine Wilderness Lodge for image and text.)

After the walk we will be treated to a BBQ lunch at the lodge. Back in Stanley you have the remainder of the afternoon and evening free.

DAY 6 

Walk:              Arthur River Cruise

Trans:             Approx. 1 ¼ hrs each way to Arthur River

Meals:             BLD

Accom:           Abbey’s Cottages (self contained cottages, shared bathrooms)

Today we travel across to the wild, west coast and the village of Arthur River where we board the M.V. George Robinson for a 5-hour journey deep into the Tarkine.

“The Arthur River is one of the State’s seven major rivers, and is the only Tasmanian river which is completely wild. The Arthur River is 170kms long and has never been logged or dammed. There has not been a hot fire through this part of the Tarkine Wilderness for almost 650 years. The river remains much as it has been for thousands of years.”

This a wonderful opportunity to view and photograph many birds but especially Sea Eagles, as they are fed from the boat – a spectacle that has delighted visitors for 30 years.

DAY 7 

Walk:              Short walks en route to Cradle Mtn

Trans:             Approx 200km / 3hrs

Meals:             BLD

Accom:           Cradle Mountain Hotel (en suite rooms)

After breakfast and lunch pack we farewell Stanley; making our way back east to Wynyard before heading south on the Murchison Highway then across the Black Bluff Range and into Cradle Valley where we check in to the Cradle Mountain Hotel. This is a relatively easy day and there will be opportunities to visit the Ranger Station Interpretive Centre and do an easy loop walk nearby. If you would like a longer hike you can take the boardwalk to Snake Hill and catch the shuttle back.

At 5.30pm we enter the world of the very special Tasmanian Devil at nearby ‘Devils @ Cradle’ sanctuary. The 1½ hour presentation is excellent and will give you great insight into the life of these timid little creatures as well as their cousins, the Quoll. Our entry payment also goes to helping this extremely vulnerable marsupial.

Dinner at the Hotel tonight is a relaxed buffet affair at Quoll’s Bistro.

DAY 8 

Walk:              Approx 11 km, 8 hours. Moderate with some challenging rough sections. Cradle Mountain summit climb involves challenging scrambling over and around huge Dolerite boulders.

Trans:             Local shuttle bus

Meals:             BLD

Accom: Cradle Mountain Hotel (en suite rooms)

NB The walks for the next two days are weather dependent to an extent so we will be watching the forecast closely. The order of the walks may be switched to take advantage of ‘weather windows’. See note below Weather and Mountain Warnings

Our first walk into Cradle Mountain-Lake St Claire NP brings us straight up into the heart of the breathtaking scenery (on a clear day anyhow!). The day begins at Ronny Creek (940m) from where we start out on the famous Overland Track, past Crater Falls and on to the boatshed at the northern end of Crater Lake. From here the track climbs steadily to reveal spectacular views across the Cradle Plateau at Marion’s Lookout. Continuing on the Overland, we arrive at Kitchen Hut shelter (there is a loo here). For those wanting to climb Cradle Mountain (1,545m and 305m elevation gain from the hut), we will start here. The rest of the group will remain at the hut.

Our return is via the Horse Track and Crater Peak (1270m) poised above Crater Lake. Back at Ronny Creek we will catch the shuttle back to the park entrance. A wonderful diversity of environments feature on this walk as we venture through ancient glacier landscapes with a glorious array of alpine plants and kaleidoscopes of colour on the rocks.

DAY 9 

Walk:               Ronny Ck to Dove Lake (approx 4.7km 2 hours) Easy – moderate. Dove Lake Circuit (approx 5.4km 2 hours) Easy

Trans:              Shuttle into Ronny Creek and return

Meals:              BLD

Accom:            Cradle Mountain Hotel (en suite rooms)

Today we head back into the park to make a lower elevation exploration of the lakes and forests. The walks are no less engaging than the alpine however and you will be entranced by the nature of this place and beauty of the landscape towering above you. There will be plenty of time for enjoying our last day of hiking in Tasmania.

Starting at Ronny Creek once again, we take the Cradle Valley Boardwalk through many glacier features to Lake Lilla and around to the start of the busy Dove Lake Circuit. Take your time admiring the lake and peaks reflected in its waters from the many viewpoints and platforms. There is magnificent King Billy Pine stands and pandani groves and you many even spot a Pink Robin amongst the branches.

Once back at the Hotel you will have time to enjoy the Wilderness Gallery at the Hotel and relax in the surrounds. Our final dinner tonight is at The Grey Gums a la Carte restaurant at our hotel.

DAY 10 

Trans:             Return to Launceston and the airport (approx 2 ½ hours)

Meals:             B

Today we farewell Cradle Mountain and travel back to Launceston. If you are staying on in Launceston we will leave you in town before continuing to the airport to meet our flights. 

GUIDES:

Teresa Cause based in Boonah, founded Horizon Guides Pty Ltd in 2007. Offering a specialised bushwalking guide service, Teresa has a background in outdoor and environmental education, with a particular emphasis on natural history. Teresa's extensive guiding experience includes tours in Australia and overseas.

She is also the proprietor of Far Outdoors in Boonah.

Lesley Nicklason is a fourth generation Pyengana resident, environmentalist, bushwalking guide and nurse. She has campaigned for protection of northeast Tasmania's forests for over 20 years, particularly the protection of the magnificent Blue Tier. Lesley will join us for the alpine sections of the tour.

GENERAL TOUR NOTES

Accommodations:

The Pennyroyal Motel Well located near the city centre and within walking distance to Cataract Gorge and the harbour area.

Mole Creek Guesthouse At Mole Creek Guesthouse the rooms are all above the restaurant. There is a cosy guest kitchen where you will be free to relax and enjoy a cuppa.

Abbey’s Cottages, Stanley. Abbeys cottages are located at the end of the main street of Stanley with easy access to The Nut track and chairlift as well as cafes, gift shops and the beach. All are self-contained with full kitchens. There is an IGA supermarket close by if you wish to purchase any extra snacks or treats, or cook your own meal on your free evening here.

Cradle Mountain Hotel The lodge has two restaurants and a bar as well as a library with a comfortable lounge area. The Wilderness Gallery comprises nine rooms of photography and art works, a Tasmanian Tiger exhibit and a shop featuring quality souvenirs and gifts. Entry to the Gallery is free. It is a must-visit place!

Meals: Meals are provided as per the daily schedule. Note that one evening in Stanley is a free night and dinner is your choice of great dining options – or you may like to cook at your cottage. Every effort will be made to cater for special dietary needs. Please make sure that you specify your dietary requirements at time of booking.

Laundry facilities: The accommodations (except for Mole Creek Guesthouse) have coin-operated laundry facilities.

Alcohol: Generally, no BYO is allowed at the restaurants. There will be a chance to purchase supplies at various points along the way for consumption privately at the accommodations. Horizon Guides will offer guests a complimentary wine or non-alcoholic drink on the first and last dinners of the tour. Drinks can be purchased as you choose at other meals. Usually they can be charged to your room and you are able to settle the tab on checkout.

Daily briefings: Each evening there will be a briefing on the walks and options for the following day.

Mobile phone coverage: There is adequate mobile phone coverage in many places however coverage on the walks can be patchy and is not guaranteed.

Grading: Most of the walks are graded Easy – Moderate but they generally also have some challenging sections. Refer to daily notes for grading on each section. With the main walks being in alpine environments, elevation gain and loss is to be expected. There are many steps on some walks and trekking poles are very useful.

Fitness: As with all walking activities, the fitter you are the more you can relax and enjoy the scenery you are there to appreciate! You will also reduce your risk of injury if you are limber. It is recommended that you continue your regular exercise program and consider adding in some more regular strenuous hill climbing and descents to get you ready for the elevation gain and loss you will encounter on the tour.

Shortening walks: On walks that are return trips (that is, out to a point and back via the same route) there may be an option to shorten the day for yourself however this is not recommended unless there is a shelter place in which to wait. In places with intersecting loop tracks we will outline options for the day.

Days off: You are under no obligation to hike every day! If you feel like a rest then take one. There are some good options for other activities near our accommodations or you can simply relax in the lounge or villages.

Toilets / Rubbish: There are limited toilet facilities in the parks so take advantage of the ones we pass… All guests will be expected to follow minimal impact principals and briefings will outline these.

Water: The Giardia parasite is found in Tassie streams and it can make your life pretty uncomfortable if it takes up residence in your system. For this reason water collected on the track should be treated (guides will carry treatments) before consumption.

THE NATIONAL PARKS and RESERVES.   (Click on the links below to go to the webpages for more information.)

Walls of Jerusalem NP / Mt Roland Reserve The Walls of Jerusalem are situated on the Central Plateau of Tasmania and form part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. Beautiful grassy valleys with pockets of pencil pine are surrounded by towering cliffs and peaks of dolerite.

South of Devonport, Mt Roland and Mt Vandyke are the high points of a small range that rises out of the rolling farmlands. Bordered by rugged cliff lines, the range is a gently sloping alpine plateau accessed by a walking track that follows an old logging track. New boardwalk allows easy access across creeks and areas of alpine wetland.

Rocky Cape NP is full of surprises. You may only want to make a quick visit to the Rocky Cape lighthouse with its sweeping views, but there is much more to see if you take the time. Before you know it you're finding out there's more to this park than meets the eye. Aboriginal heritage, ship wrecks, rock formations turned sideways, beautiful hills running down to the sea and an incredible variety   of flowering plants. It makes the many corners of this small park worth closer inspection.” (Information from Parks and Wildlife Service Tasmania)

Cradle Mountain NP “Cradle Mountain forms the northern end of the wild Cradle Mt - Lake St Clair National Park, itself a part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. The jagged contours of Cradle Mountain epitomise the feel of a wild landscape, while ancient rainforest and alpine heathlands, buttongrass and stands of colourful deciduous beech provide a range of environments to explore. Icy streams cascading out of rugged mountains, stands of ancient pines mirrored in the still waters of glacial lakes and a wealth of wildlife ensure there is always something to captivate you. The area is one of the most popular natural areas in Tasmania. Cradle is the starting point for the world-famous Overland Track.

The Cradle Mountain - Lake St Clair National Park shares a "Twin Parks" agreement with the World Heritage listed Jiuzhaigou Nature Reserve in the People's Republic of China.” (Information from Parks and Wildlife Service Tasmania)

The Tarkine (indigenous name: takayna) is an area of the north west Tasmania which environmental non-government organisations (NGOs) claim contains significant areas of wilderness. The Tarkine is noted for its beauty and natural values, containing the largest area of Gondwanan cool-temperate rainforest in Australia, as well as for its prominence in Tasmania's early mining history. The areas high concentration of Aboriginal sites has led to it being described by the Australian Heritage Council as "one of the world's great archaeological regions". (Wikipedia entry)

WEATHER AND MOUNTAIN WARNINGS

  • Many of the areas covered in this tour are in alpine environments. In general the western region of Tasmania is subject to highly changeable weather and high winds, rain, sleet and snow are possible even in the middle of summer. A fine day can turn on very challenging conditions within a very short period of time. Cradle Mountain NP is subject to up to 2000mm of rain per year!
  • In these areas each person MUST carry the minimum equipment as specified in the packing list. Gear will be checked in Launceston to ensure it is adequate for the conditions we may encounter. You may be required to purchase or hire more appropriate wet weather gear if yours is deemed insufficient.
  • If deteriorating conditions are encountered on the track the guides reserve the right to cut short any walk and retreat to a safer area. This may include sheltering in a hut until conditions ease or returning to the vehicle.
  • If the weather forecast is considered too hazardous for walks in the alpine then the guides reserve the right to cancel the scheduled walk and offer alternative walks or activities.

 

 

 

 

 

Tour Summary

Dates: No current dates Cost: per person twin share Guests: Minimum 6 / Maximum 10 Accommodation: Fully accommodated Inclusions: 9 nights accommodation All meals as per the itinerary Transfers and travel as per daily schedule Access to National Parks and State Parks Services of an experienced walking guide; and a co-guide for part of the tour. Tour information specific to the itinerary including notes and packing lists. Horizon Guides will provide you with a high quality 350ml vacuum flask to keep. FAQ: For more information on walk gradings, suitability of walks and weather conditions please visit our FAQ page.

Keep in touch with us

Contact info

7 Church St, Boonah QLD 4310

Phone +61 07 54634 114
Mobile +61 0417 760 966

teresa@horizonguides.com.au

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