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Peter & Joan's Adventures
23rd Oct 2017 - 29th Oct 2017 - Adventure before Dementia Tour
Tasmania - Week 2 - NW Coast.

This week was a mixed bag. Lots of driving, wind, waterfalls and short walks. We were still based at Stanley with Arthur River and the Tarkine being our main points of interest, this week. Monday we set out for Smithton to start our assault on the what the brochures described as breathtaking wilderness, wild rivers and dramatic coastline. Because of the number of points of interest (POI) and the distance we decided to spread it over two days, completing the coastal section on day one and the rainforest on another day. The first stop was unplanned and at a commercial venture called the Dismal Swamp. An Eco-tourism centre, built on a sinkhole, originally set up by the Tasmanian government to showcase the unique qualities of the region and the wonders of a near pristine environment. The clincher for us was the 110 metre metal slide that delivers visitors from the entrance to the base of the sink hole. At the bottom is a series of boardwalks around the swamp. Educational but a little overpriced at $22 each. From here we drove to Marrawah, for lunch, then along the coast to West Point and eventually to Arthur River where we found the 'edge of the world'. It wasn't as dramatic as the name suggests but the ocean in the vicinity of the river mouth was certainly rough and threatening. We continued along the coast to Couta Rocks  before turning for home, inland via Kannunah Bridge, stopping off at Sumac Lookout which provided a majesric view of the the upper Arthur River. 

We had a quiet, domestic Tuesday morning in the van before heading out after lunch for Mawbanna, home of a big tree, Dip Falls and an interesting way to park old cars. An interesting drive through Tasmanian farmlands, had us eventually turning onto a good dry weather dirt road, across the Dip River and into a forest of big trees. A pleasant walk through the rainforest and then the dilemma of capturing the true perspective of this mammoth tree. Thanks Joan. We backtracked from here and were surprised by the two tier drop and rock formations that make up Dip Falls, which is only enhanced by the provision of a viewing platform at both the top and at the base of the falls. Well worth the drive. We were back at camp in time for an early tea and a stroll up the Nut to capture the sunset. It was a great walk though very cold and windy on the summit and not the best sunset, with some clouds on the horizon.

Wednesday we headed back to the Tarkine to complete what we started on Monday. We approached from the other end, stopping at a number of POI before finding  our way back to Kannunah Bridge, our last POI on Monday. The other POI included in this drive were:

  • Trowutha Arch. Another sinkhole at the end of a short walk through a rainforest
  • Tayatea Bridge. Another crossing of the wild Arthur River
  • Sinkhole. A flooded sinkhole with dark water's and stunning reflections.
  • Rapid River. A picnic area and our lunch spot next to the tannin stained Rapid River
  • Lake Chisholm. Another picturesque walk through tall trees to a sinkhole. 

This road eventually lead us back to the  Kannunah Bridge junction, so we headed home. Arriving home well before dark allowed me time to do a walk around town to photograph some of the many historic and colourful buildings in Stanley. Also had time to revisit the cemetery and partake in some geocaching. Yeah another find.

Thursday we broke camp and backtracked to Burnie, as we had the BT50 booked in for its 80,000 klm service the next day. We located a great free camp right on the waters edge at Cooee Point, and only 800m from the Mazada dealership. Thursday afternoon we called into the visitors information centre to plan our itinerary for Friday. Joan also took some time out to visit a hairdresser and I took care of the weekly shopping. Friday morning I dropped the car off for its service and thanks to a Mazda loaner we got to explore the surrounds of Burnie. First stop was Guide Falls, near Ridley. Another series of spectacular waterfalls, made all the better by the provision of viewing platforms and a riverside walk which also provided access to the base of one of the larger falls. Plenty of birdlife and we also stumbled upon a very devout photographer fully engrossed in his pursuit of the 'money shot'. From here we drove past the Emu Valley Rhododendron Garden, before making our way to Fernglade Platypus Reserve. Another great riverside walk with interpretative signs scattered along the riverbank. This walk is also listed as one of Tasmania's 60 Great Short Walks. Of course one of our goals is to complete this list during our stay. After picking up our car after lunch we headed to the library for free wifi to update our apps and iPad operating systems.

Saturday we had a leisurely morning. Free camping means no checkout time. Around lunchtime we packed the van up and headed towards Sheffield. Sheffield has no caravan park but does have a self-contained RV camp. We checked it out but decided to move onto Mole Creek. It was an interesting, if slow, trip around Mount Roland and down the Gog Range Regional Reserve to the quaint Mole Creek Caravan Park on Sassafras Creek. Lovely large grass sites on the banks of the creek. Think we will be staying here a few days. 

A great sleep Saturday night had us waking to an overcast and rather cold morning on Sunday. We decided to have a service day, so stayed at the van washing, doing other domestic chores and drafting this blog. The sun appeared a few times but doubt it got any warmer than about 12 degrees.

Until next time stay safe and happy.



Next: Tasmania - Week 3 - NW Inland
Previous: Tasmania - Week 1 - NW Coast.​


Diary Photos

The slide, Dismal Swamp

The slide, Dismal Swamp

Peter, Edge of the World

Old cars parked on stumps

The Big Tree ( - Joan - )

Section of Dip Falls

Dip Falls

Steps leading down to base of Dip Falls

Chairlift and walking track, The Nut, Stanley

Sunset from the Nut (24 Oct 2017)

Joan, Trowutta Arch

Reflections, Lake Chisholm

Joe Lyons Cottage, Stanley

Movie Poster, 'The Light between Oceans' Stanley

Captains Cottage, Stanley

Campsite Cooee Point, Burnie

View from caravan kitchen Window, Cooee Point

Guide Falls, Burnie

Guide Falls, Burnie

Intrepid photographer, Guide Falls

Superb Blue Wren, Guide Falls

Mole Creek, 18 klm from Paradise


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