TAS2020: Back Home

Bridge over the lake at the Tasmanian Arboretum

It is now the morning of Thursday 7 January and I am back sitting at my desk, having disembark the ferry yesterday morning after another very calm crossing. The end to the 26 day trip came with mixed emotions. On the one hand, we would have liked to just keep going, but on the other hand we have responsibilities to attend to, like work!

However, we are back and I am pleased to complete the day to day posts by reporting two major wins.

Day 25 update

After the disappointment of only fleetingly seeing one Quoll the previous night, one of locals made a few appearances. The first appearance was interesting because, all of a sudden, the dozen or so Pademelons that were feeding got spooked and disappeared. So, the next time that happened, we were ready with cameras in hand. Later in the evening we also had a visit from a Tassie Devil, a different one from the previous night. This one actually stayed in front of the cabin to eat rather than take the food away. As a result, we not only were able to take a few shots, but Kerena also managed to take a couple of videos.

However, we still had not had a decent sighting of a Platypus. In mentioning this to Len, he suggested going to the Tasmanian Arboretum near Forth where the lake there has quite a few that are not shy during the day.

Day 26

We almost made our aim of leaving the cabin by 08:30 to head north eventually to the ferry terminal. Our first stop was at Preston Falls, one of the most accessible waterfalls in Tasmania. There was not much water flowing into the dark gully at the bottom and the high contrast of early morning sun shining directly on to it made it really difficult to take a good photograph. As a result, not one for the portfolio. I learned when I first started photographing waterfalls that an overcast sky is preferential to bright direct sunshine.

From there we drove to Penguin for morning tea at the beach and then on to Ulverstone for last minute shopping. Our next stop was the Tasmanian Arboretum, firstly for lunch and then to seek out the Platypus. Len was quite correct – there were quite few platypus swimming about, so we managed to get quite a few shots. That said, Platypus are not great subjects because, when they surface, very little of their bodies is visible, as you can see from the photo below.

So, the challenge at the start of the journey was to find and photograph: a Platypus; a Tasmanian Devil and a Quoll – success on all three!

After stopping to visit a mate in Leith, our arrival at the ferry terminal was badly timed as we were directed to the very front of deck 2. As I suspected this meant we were the last car off the ferry in the morning. Actually, we were the second last car off, as some poor chap had to change a punctured tyre.

The rest of the day was spent unpacking, drying out a very wet tent and stocking up a very empty fridge.

So where to from here?

I am planning to write a few additional blogs about specific aspects of the trip:

The photography – for my photographer followers

The accommodation – for my aspiring traveller followers

The walks – for my bushwalking followers

Please watch out for these during the next week or so. In the meantime, many thanks for reading my posts which I hope you have enjoyed. If you have any comments to make, please send me a note via the contact page.

Tasmanian Devil feasting on chicken legs and wings (100mm, ISO6400, 1/30, f4.5, handheld)
Quoll gathering up mouthfuls of chicken legs and wings (100mm, ISO6400, 1/40, f5.0, handheld)
Platypus swimming past at close quarters (120mm, ISO250, 1/640, f5.0, handheld)