TAS2020: Day 01

Leaving Melbourne on the Spirit of Tasmania

OK, so it is now day 2, but yesterday was pretty busy with arriving, travelling, setting up camp, making dinner etc, but more of that later.

With breakfast out of the way, back to Thursday: we left Gisborne at just before 16:00, having had some fun packing the car, and arrived at the ferry terminal before 17:00, boarding was straightforward and our cabin was ready for us. The crossing was ‘as smooth as’ except for when we crossed the Heads and for a bit after. As a result, Kerena did not suffer too much from sea sickness. Disembarking was also painless, just a bit of a wait for the security biosecurity and Covid 19 checking.

Our first stop was Railton where the town had started creating Topiary features back in 2002. There were all sorts of animals and artifacts made out of plants. As an aside, Railton has an incredibly wide main street, designed to allow the bullock carts to turn around after off-loading at the rail head.

From there we went to Sheffield, famous for its street murals. We had a wander round enjoying some very creative artworks and quirky shops. The murals set out to tell the history of the town and describe the way of life in days gone by. Well with a visit by anyone interested in street art.

Our last stop on the way was the rhododendron gardens at Emu Valley. Unfortunately, we missed the plants in full bloom, but the gardens wee nonetheless spectacular, a major rival to our very own Victorian gardens in the Dandenongs. The highlight for Kerena was spotting a Platypus in one of the lakes, but it was a bit challenging to get a photo.

From there it was on the road to Arthur River, our destination for three nights, only stopping at a Burnie supermarket for fresh fruit and veggies.

We arrived at our Arthur River camp site about 16:30, after looking at a couple of others. I think the challenge we will have as we travel around is finding sites flat enough for the tent. We soon changed our minds about the first spot we selected as it was a bit exposed to a fairly strong wind that was blowing. So, we changed to a more sheltered spot and, guess what, I am sitting in the tent with the wind blowing in the opposite direction!

We were told that the sunset could be quite a sight to see, so after dinner of steak and salad, we set off the for the Edge of the World – nothing between it and South Africa. The sunset didn’t really happen, but it was good to get the camera out.

Sleep overnight was a bit hard to come by and on a middle of the night excursion, the night sky was so clear and covered in stars. Tempted as I was to get the camera out, I was too tired, however tonight I will plan the best time and take as few night sky shots for you.

I aim to prepare these in the evenings, but on days we are travelling between locations this might be a bit difficult, particularly if we are setting up camp.

Distance travelled, Day 1: 275 km.

Topiary at Railton
Gardens at Emu Valley
More gardens at Emu Valley