(TAS) Week Touring around Tassie

Here and there
Posts: 38
Joined: June 9th, 2010, 11:39 am

(TAS) Week Touring around Tassie

Unread post by RodeoJon » May 5th, 2011, 11:15 pm

Fuel used - 201 liters (70 lt tank)
Distance – 1850km
Vehicle - RA Rodeo 3lt turbo diesel 4x4
Tyres- 235/85 r16 BFG A/T. Standard road tyres would have been fine or possibly better.
Water - 40lt
People- young couple
Equip- roof top tent, awning, gas stove, 40lt engel, usual camping items, recovery gear, compressor etc

Summary- spent a good week (Easter plus a few days) in Tassie touring around trying to see as much as possible, one vehicle and not a great deal of four wheel drive action.
I would suggest that if you had a patrol or equivalent with big lift and no sway bars, large tyres and lots on the roof, the windy roads would be a real pain in the a$$. Stock set ups are fine here and you could tow a camper pretty much everywhere. If you are going to drive at night there are animals absolutely everywhere, expect to hit a few, good driving lights and a bull bar are essential. We only hit one and consider that lucky.

Day 1- Good Friday
Left on the spirit after the boat was delayed we set sail around midnight. The ride was quite rough; we were rolling all through the night. It wouldn't be pleasant if you were prone to sea sickness

Notes for next time, Get a national parks on the boat, we missed out as the tourism office closed early, you need to be quick!

Day 2 - Saturday
We got out of the dock by about 9.30 and drove straight to Launceston. We went to Cataract Gorge, the chair lift didn't look worth it so we walked across the bridge and around a bit, it's nice to visit. We also wanted to go to the Boags brewery and do a tour but it was closed for Easter. From here we took a long drive to the bay of fires, the beaches on the way were nice. At the visitor center we got a map of all the camp sites and after checking out a few we decided they were too busy and we needed an alternate plan. So we drove to "big lagoon" and turned off to the left down a four wheel drive track and followed it to the water, there was a small clearing here. Because there are no signs and it's a four wheel drive track to get in, we had it to ourselves. I suggest camping here if you can find it.

Day 3 Sunday
Today we drove down to Freycinet NP, it was a nice drive along the coast and we stopped in Bicheno and at the friendly beaches on the way. Fill up fuel here. The friendlies would have been a good place to camp in hindsight. We got a warning put on the windscreen to buy a pass to park/camp in the NP. We headed down towards wineglass bay. On the way we stopped at the visitors center and bought a national parks pass which meant we didn't get a fine from that warning notice... So we drove down to the wineglass bay carpark and climbed up to the lookout. From there we drove down a four wheel drive track that comes off the road to the lighthouse towards Bluestone bay. We thought that again we would have it to ourselves as its poorly signed and a 4wd track but when we arrived it was full of Subaru’s (which did well to get in there!) we had stumbled onto a popular rock climbing location and the campground was nearly full. You camp a little way off Bluestone bay but we visited it in the morning and it was nice. I would probably try to camp somewhere less crowded in future.


Day 4 Monday
Today we visited the lighthouse point and proceeded back to the wineglass bay car park, we were not content with the lookout that we visited the previous day so we climbed mount Amos, this was a very hard walk and we spent a lot of time scrambling up and down rocks, we did it in about 3 hrs return and the views were great. Alternatively you could walk down to the beach past the lookout instead which would have also been worthwhile. After this we stopped at honeymoon bay for a few more photos and then drove straight to Hobart where we had booked a hotel. If you had time I would stop at the old bridge in Richmond, but we didn't.

Day 5 Tuesday
Today we drove down to the eagle hawk neck, we saw the tessellated pavement, fossil bay lookout, blowhole, Tasman arch, devils kitchen. The drive from the Tasman arch to Port Arthur is very nice. Stunning inlets and coves to see on the way. Port Arthur is a big place full of ruins of some very old buildings; it was a convict penitentiary when Australia was settled. We arrived at 3.20pm and got a twilight pass, these are only $17 instead of the usual $30 per adult. Perfect for those who don’t want to spend more than a couple of hours here, you don't get to go on the cruise around the lake as part of this though which would have been good. After this we drove back to Hobart for dinner.

Day 6 Wednesday
Left Hobart and drove to Huonville, get fuel and food here if you need it, there isn't much if you’re going south. We went to the Tahune Forest Airwalk and Swinging bridges. Buy tickets 28kms before in Geeveston - nice little town with a grocery shop if you are desperate

We then drove to cockle creek near Southport and did the south bay walk. It took us 3hrs return but we had to jog most of the way there to make it for sunset. People we passed were carrying surf boards and the surf was out of control when we arrived. Great views of the Southern most tip of Australia and this is the most southern point you can walk to in Australia. It would have been nice to bush camp with a hike tent etc but we walked out with torches and camped the night at one of the many camp sites you pass on the way in.

Day 7 Thursday
We got up and went to Hastings caves, the tours run on the hour and take about an hour, cost is $25 pp. It was quite a good experience, the thermal pool was not really that warm and I wouldn't bother unless you were cooking lunch there, there are bbqs and a fire. It is good for a shower as well if you need one. We then drove basically straight to Lake St Clair, we went via Mount Field and went to the waterfall at the base. It would have been nice to camp there and drive and walk to the top of the mountain the next day. The drive took a long time, we stopped for food fuel and water, I am not sure there is that much to see on the way

The camp ground at the lake costs $25 for a night for an unpowered site and $35 for a powered one, however by the time we got there (dinner time) even the after-hours office was closed and we left in the morning without having to pay.

Day 8 Friday
Today we drove to Strahan via Queenstown. We stopped on the way at the car park for Frenchman's Cap and walked down to the bridge over the Franklin river. After this you will see the amazing Frenchman's cap over the mountains to the south. We continued to Strahan as we were planning to do a cruise on the Gordon/Franklin Rivers, but they only run at about 9am and cost about $100pp for 5.5 hrs, so we weren't too unhappy that we missed it. Strahan was a lot smaller than expected, food and fuel was expensive. We drove on to Tullah, this nights campsite was quite good. Turn toward Macintosh dam - drive over the dam wall and along the spill way and then look for a site down any of the tracks, the one to the right has a great view, the ones straight and slightly down to the left are more sheltered. We had a campfire here too, the only night we could do it easily.

Day 9 Saturday
Today we got up early and drove to Cradle Mountain. You have to get a shuttle bus from the visitor center to dove lake, it's free with you parks pass (even if you don't have one she didn’t ask to actually see it so you could say you have one - they are stuck to your windscreen)

It was cloudy so we didn’t climb it, you really need nice weather for it to be worthwhile, as the weather was getting worse we decided to just do the easy 2 hr walk around the lake but it would have been nice to go up to the lookout or the summit.

After this we drove to davenport for dinner and headed home on the boat.

All up an excellent trip. Would have been much better to have a few more days as it was quite rushed, we traveled through the sites quite fast and sometimes missed lunch, we arrived at campsites often after dark so it would have been nice to take more time and relax a bit more but we both wanted to see everything and didn’t have much time off. I will have to go back some day to do the South West Walk inc Federation peak, Frenchman’s cap walk and Overland track to cradle mountain and suggest any of these if you have time to spare.
Last edited by RodeoJon on July 15th, 2013, 10:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

Tassie Surf
Here and there
Posts: 91
Joined: September 16th, 2009, 11:55 am
Location: Launceston, Tas

Re: (TAS) Week Touring around Tassie

Unread post by Tassie Surf » May 14th, 2011, 11:27 am

Looks like you guys had an awesome trip there. good to see that you found some unchartered areas to camp at. great photos there, and cheers for the write up. ive been to most of those places, execpt the far south and frenchmans cap. i really want to do the walk to frenchmans cap though. looks to be some awesome scenery there. there is heaps more to see in Tassie, but you nailed it in the short amount of time that you had.

Part of the furniture
Posts: 1898
Joined: May 14th, 2010, 10:46 pm

Re: (TAS) Week Touring around Tassie

Unread post by oncedisturbed » June 19th, 2011, 4:42 am

Nice pics, used to live in Kingston years ago and went to Cockle Creek in 92, nice area but it was winter so I froze the package off

Been here a while
Posts: 343
Joined: April 16th, 2004, 7:23 pm

Re: (TAS) Week Touring around Tassie

Unread post by cewilson » June 24th, 2011, 6:24 pm

Thanks for the report. It's always good to read someone else's viewpoint, as growing up in the state I find myself forgetting about the spots that tourists go too. It's a good reminder that I need to get back again (last went in December).

Not trying to shoot you down here, but you're advice of standard tyres/standard vehicle is alright if you stick to the main tracks. However if you step away from them you'll find yourself in a whole world of trouble. Whilst the magazines etc only talk about the west coast, there's some wild tracks in the other areas of the state as well.

If anyone is looking at a trip down there, pick yourself up a copy of the 4WD book for the state. There's heaps of tracks in there that'll test any vehicle.


Greg 80series
Been here a while
Posts: 286
Joined: January 15th, 2007, 10:45 pm

Re: (TAS) Week Touring around Tassie

Unread post by Greg 80series » September 23rd, 2011, 10:05 pm

Good report and great pics mate
Did the tassie trip in 2010 and had a ball even without our 4x4 was an awesome trip.

Return to “Tasmania”