December 1, 2013
We packed up our gear and went to the kitchen for breakfast. All the other people we had met last night were there, so we chatted with them while having our oatmeal and hot chocolate. After saying goodbye to everyone we loaded up the car and were on our way. Today was the last full day of our holiday, and tomorrow we would be on our way home, but we still had today to make the most of. So we headed down the road to Mt. Field National Park, arriving there at about lunch time.
By now the day was lovely, sunny, and warm so sitting at the picnic table was great. Summer had finally arrived in Tasmania, and there were crowds of people at the park in summer clothing. Our walk in Mt. Field was a combination walk joining up the Russell Falls trail, the Tall Trees loop, and the Lady Barron Falls trail, which took us about two and a half hours. The first section of the trail, to Russell Falls, was very busy because it is close to the visitor centre, and also because today was Sunday. The falls were very pretty and full of water, coming down over hard layers of rock.
From Russell Falls the trail went uphill into an area which had a lot of very tall gum trees. Looking up them was mind-boggling as you couldn’t see all the way to the top. One of them was claimed to be the tallest flowering plant in the world. (Remember, conifers aren’t flowering plants!) The crowds had thinned out quite a bit as we continued on to Lady Barron Falls, which looked similar to Russell Falls but weren’t as high or as interesting. After Lady Barron Falls the trail carried on downhill, then up a flight of about 250 steps, then downhill again to the visitor centre, completing the loop. It was a nice way to spend the afternoon before heading back to Hobart.
Last time we had been in Hobart it had been cloudy, so we didn’t go up Mount Wellington. Today the weather was fine, but we were tired of driving so we decided not to do that today either. As we pulled up outside the hostel at 3:55 pm we found that pay parking ended at 4 pm on Sundays. Excellent! We checked into the hostel and were assigned Room 102, which was adjacent to the one we had two weeks ago. We brought all our stuff from the car into the room and made an attempt to go through all the brochures we had collected.
At 5:30 pm we went town to the harbour to get fish and chips for dinner. The barge that we had eaten at last time was closed, so we ate at the only other one open. Rosemary had trevally and Paul had blue grenadier fish. Our order took a while to cook, but once we had it we sat on a bench in the sun. The blue grenadier wasn’t as nice as the trevally, it was oilier. But apparently the gulls weren’t as choosy, as one of them grabbed a piece of fish right out of Paul’s hand! Needless to say we were very vigilant after that.
Once done with our dinner we headed towards Battery Point for an evening walk. This area is part of the original settlement of Hobart and there are some very lovely old houses there. We found a trail of sculptures celebrating the history of the area, so we followed that for a bit. But as we didn’t know how far it went, we turned around to head back to the YHA. We reorganized our packs for flying for the last time, and we were amazed at how quickly that went.