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Week 6, Roaming Tasmania, Australia

Tuesday 23rd January 2024.
A restful late start, and after yummy sourdough blueberry pancakes a drive down town into New Norfolk.
Along the way was a quick stop into the Salvation Army depot to check out the book library. Nothing for Ian this time.
Into town and a walk down the main street and into some of the many op shops and antique shops. Total of one book to Ian and one top to Deborah.
Country towns have different shops to those we city slickers see, such as the local gun shop. Make mine a Winchester please! Deborah got a bit of info about fly fishing from one of the owners.
It was time, so off to The Quilted Teapot for a coffee and tea. Driving around we located, by chance, the road to the local tip which also led to Peppermint Lookout. Nice view from the opposite side of the valley to our previous views from Pulpit Lookout.
Ian just wanted to play a game or two. We found Children's and Adult sized soccer fields at Tynwald Park.
There was a bike education park with traffic lights for the littles. I would love to see this at Busselton, Western Australia. Perhaps a grant might just see this installed.
A bit of Park Art.
We took a drive and found some more Oast Houses and a few beautiful historic houses.
Back to the camp site, but before arriving back we had a slight detour to the Cherry farm to fill up again. These cherries are huge in size compared to the ones we see back home in Western Australia and are so full of flavour.

Wednesday 24th and we head off down south towards Geeveston from Lawitta, which was a suburb of New Norfolk, where we had chosen to stay the past 3 days.
Just before hitting the big smoke of Hobart, we stopped near the Bridgewater bridge for a cuppa and some black swan spotting.
Hobart presented with the Anthem of the Seas. One we haven't been on. It looked very big and impressive.
The drive through Huonville and Franklin gave some views of boats and houses from the bygone era.
Upon arrival of the Geevston RSL RV Camping Area we parked and set up next to a Sunland Patriot. We met the owners Shauna & Danny over Happy Hour, involving a cup of tea on this occasion.
By the evening there would have been over 40 campers here. That means the RSL were paid $400 for the night from all the campers. Not a bad little money spinner for them and the town.
Geeveston has even got a library!
Around afternoon tea time all the girls came around to say hello. 13 in fact, the bakers dozen. Ian got quite a gaggle out of the visit.
And along the riverbank next to the camp ground is a resident platypus. Later that evening we saw him swimming, eating and playing in the river.
Geeveston is a lovely little town, even used for filming of the TV series, "Rosehaven."
This week filming in Geeveston is "The Survivors", keep your eyes open for it.
Tonight's dinner was cooked in the fry pan on the induction stove accompanied by a lovely mixed salad. Thanks uncle Harry, he caught this salmon. The temperature reached 23 today, it was t shirts and shorts weather. Sunny with patches of clouds.

Thursday 25th
A not too late morning start this morning, as we had a appointment with mother earth. Hastings Caves and Thermal Springs to be precise. The actual cave you descend into is called Newdegate Cave, a multi-levelled dolomite cave decorated with crystal straws, stalactites and stalagmites. In fact it's the largest dolomite show-cave in the southern hemisphere. Seems it's the usual thing with caves, 9 degrees inside so wear something warm. Also, there's 500 steps that need negotiating with one set called 'The Jenny Craig' steps.
After the thoroughly enjoyable cave tour, we then dipped into the water for the first time on this Tasmanian trip. Of course the water was a thermal spring fed pool at a steady 29 degrees Celsius.
Some beautiful scenery on our way back to Geeveston.
We found some of the Geevston quirky wooden Statues of identities and pioneers of the town, Geeveston.
James Hinchey, Geevestons Village Blacksmith. 1874-1951
Jessica Hannabury, Geevestons Millner. 1883-1981
James Wotherspoon, Geevestons Policeman. 1912-1992
Dr Oswald Kyle, Geevestons Doctor. 1911-1980
William Trevaskis, Geevestons swearing Pharmacist. 1914-1999
The Heritage Couple, a tribute to all the pioneers.
We popped out for a fish and chips dinner tonight. On the way home we drove past the local metal recycling plant, which also provides bits for metal artwork. Some painted artwork also embellishes the establishment.
Here's the town's bank which can be seen in Rosehaven too, just rebadged.
Back at the camp site we find another Sunland caravan, a Phoenix has snuck in. And we then discover we'd met the owners Tarren & Dave at Kulin bush races a year or more back.
A wander around the campsite that evening provided an amazing sight, 2 platypuses together in the creek. It didn't last long as a slight argument ensued and one swam away down river. We watched them feeding and swimming in the stream for some time, such interesting and energetic animals.

Friday 26th Australia Day
Plans to go walking, but we awoke to cloudy, rainy spells with 40kph wind gusts. So we lay in bed a while before taking the plunge to get up. But first, a hearty breakfast to prepare for the long walks to come. Bacon and eggs for breakfast cooked in the electric frying pan.
It looked fineish when we head off towards the Hartz Mountains, another part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage area. Our plan was to drive up the mountain to do 3 of the more easy to moderate walks, Waratah lookout and Keogh Falls a 5 minutes return, then Arve Falls a 20 minute return and Lake Osborne a 45 minute return walk.
Well the temperature dropped to 8 degrees in the rain soaked mountain area, so we did Waratah lookout first, with our umbrellas up.
We drove a bit further to Arve Falls carpark and, whilst sitting in the car watching the wind whip the rain into blizzard like sheets, contemplated the real need to see the Falls. The sun shone for a moment, and like kids seeing a lolly shop we thought it was a sign from the heavens. Off we went again armed with umbrellas. Well the Falls were very nice, the puddles were plentiful, the walk back to the car not so nice. We did find some of the Banksia Marganata Trees in flower they were beautiful. The Waratah flower has alluded us. It is sign posted as being in flower and abundance in December and January. The Information Lady did say it came out in November and December in 2023 instead. Needless to say our clothes ended up hanging in the caravan, then in the sunshine, when it decided to shine, after we got back to camp.

Saturday 27th
Today was a drive northward to Franklin to see what we could see. First stop was actually in Geeveston, at the Information and Museum/Art Gallery. The display upstairs was an amazing display of antique woodworking machinery. Collected by Vincent Smith, a well respected machinery dealer, woodturning teacher and passionate collector and instrumental in the establishment of the Woodcraft Guild of Tasmania. Many of these hand and treadle powered wood working machines date from the 19th and early 20th century, and some are possibly the last of their kind. Geeveston being a timber town from as early as 1815, meant Vince considered the town to be the home of his collection.
I found Ian having a trucking good time.
When you think about Forester's chopping down old growth forests here is an example, this Huon Pine is dated at 2,000 years old.
Geeveston was also the setting for many scenes from one of our favourite Australian comedy dramas, Rosehaven. So they also have photos and memorabilia from the show at the information centre.

As Deborah had been a good girl lunch was next, at Frank's Cider House & Cafe. Nice food and Deborah indulged in a Cherry Pear cider. The Clark family has had the farm/orchard since 1836, and the cider making began more recently and is named in honour of the current owners grandfather, Frank Clark.
Who did Deborah find in the Franklin Lock Up but Ian, just visiting ofcourse. Ian hadn't had a drink at Frank's, so was in no danger of being locked up. He was the responsible driver and had a coffee.
We tried to make it to the market at Franklin, in the old theatre, but on the dot at 3 o'clock the door closed. But a bonus was the fruit picking we managed across the road. Yummy blackberry's.
We passed some of these vessels in the Huon River.
So we moved on to Heriots Point Vineyard and Winery. We were met by some friendly furry gals and chaps that have been separated from their Mum's a couple of days prior.
Evan, the owner, was very welcoming and provided tastings of his Sparkling Pinot, Huon White a blend of Chardonnay and Sylvaner plus the 2004 and 2010 Pinot Noir. He is open on the weekends for tastings. The riverside land that the vineyard currently occupies has been farmed by 3 families since the 1830's. The first being the Heriot sisters who landed on the point nearby, then the Walkers and now the Rolley's.
The wine tasting is conducted in an original, relocated, pruners shed.
Port Huon Marina
We bidded Evan farewell, and drove off heading out of the vineyard and out of the vines was his pruning hand waving good bye. Evan was back out pruning his vineyard, in between customers and rain. Evan did say the secret to Tasmania is layers. Layers of clothing. The weather has been so changeable you can get 4 seasons in a day, several times.

Sunday 28th, today we set out on our mystery picnic with Riddle Me Adventures, in the Huon Valley. This fabulous experience was gifted to us for our Christmas & Birthday presents. We enjoyed the riddles, the food and the mystery of this experience. After picking up our drink and food items at different locations we enjoyed the picnic itself at our chosen destination.
Today's temperature was 23 degree. It was a very nice day.

Monday 29th
A very late check-out this morning, which included filling the van main tank with water. Our next stop is Gordon for a night or 2. Nicely parked up at the foreshore with a great view. Deborah even got to do some oyster catching, shucking and eating. Here's the oyster catcher, not to be confused with the Pied Oyster Catcher.

Catch you next week.

Posted by iandeborah 21:23

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Lovely, dripping weather included...lots of great ideas for our visit

by Jan

The Huon is one of my favourite places in Tassie ..so much to see and explore.. The fabulous airways and the orchards and tge River...just so much to see ❤️

by Rose

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