9 Days – –Walk Grade: Moderate

Our South Coast Track is truly an ‘expedition’.  A spectacular flight from Hobart and over the route begins a real appreciation of this wild and remote wilderness.  Our walk departs from historic Melaleuca Inlet (on Bathurst Harbour). Over the next nine days from here, 80km to Cockle Creek, we traverse an amazing variety of landscapes. White sandy beaches, rainforests and mountain streams as well as sub-alpine, perhaps snow covered heath to an altitude of over 1000 meters. The route has a rich history of both traditional and colonial influence and passing through an array of habitats with rare and unusual flora and fauna, the journey is a real ‘immersion’.

The terrain can be challenging. The walking days are not excessively long (average 4/5 hours) and we plan a rest day, though some sections involve steep ascents and rain can make others parts boggy or add delays at the various creek/river crossings. That said, there are also long stretches of easier track and beach walking and, with our guidance, the walk is suitable for those with little experience with a reasonable level of fitness and perseverance. The accomplishment and experience are well worth the effort.

 

South Coast

What’’s includedEquipment ChecklistWalk Grades

Details and Pricing

Summer (December-April)- Departs on demand
Grade: Moderate

  • Nine days, eight nights (tent based)
  • Pickup Hobart 6am, returns to Hobart early
    evening final day
  • Average pack weight 15-16kg
  • All inclusive pricing (inc. local travel, planning,
    equipment, guides food and catering)

See discounts in FAQ

South Coast

$2550/ per person

Alternative Date: (Please suggest a range of choices if possible, especially for singles and smaller groups)

Itinerary

There are many recorded accounts available for the track walks of Tasmania. The descriptions and notes we provide are meant more as a brief introduction. Listed itineraries are our usual routine, guidelines with some flexibility.

For a better understanding of this particular walk the following maps and publications provide further information:

Map Sheet Tasmap 1:100000 ‘South Coast Walks’

South Coast Track- John & Monica Chapman

 

 

Day One
Distance: 12 km
Estimated Time: 3 – 4 hours

We pickup from Hobart city accommodations starting from 6.00am for transport to Cambridge Airport. Following a brief introduction and outfitting we will board our plane for the spectacular 40min flight along the South Coast (or alternatively along the south west mountain ranges) to the trailhead at Melaleuca Inlet. The walk for the afternoon involves an easy ramble from the harbour south to Point Eric on Cox Bight.

 

Day Two
Distance: 11 km
Estimated Time: 5 – 6 hours

Warming up with a beach stroll the track turns inland and a short ascent into The Redpoint Hills. The track is relatively easy going as it meanders across open undulating plains. Our destination is normally Louisa Bay, a side-trip from the main track but a highlight of beauty and an interest of aboriginal history and culture. Our first major obstacle is the Louisa River which empties into the bay and we make a decision to skip Louisa Bay if the weather is threatening a delay at the river. We otherwise spend a night at each.

 

Day Three
Distance: 9 km
Estimated Time: 3 – 4 hours

The Ironbound range dominates the eastern skyline throughout the day. Louisa River is a major watershed and a verdant corridor on the coastal plains. We head back inland across buttongrass plains to our campsite on the Louisa River at the base of the range. We camp among majestic eucalypts and and mixed rainforest canopy by the riverside.

 

Day Four
Distance: 12 km
Estimated Time: 9 – 10 hours

Following an early breakfast we start on the almost immediate 1000m ascent to the top of The Ironbound Range. The climb, to the highest point on our journey, sees us ascend from coastal plains to sub alpine heath, the contrast and views while crossing the range make up for the effort. While the ascent is well graded with sections of benched track the descent back to the coast includes rainforest, roots and muddy sections. No doubt this is one of the harder days on the track.

Day Five
Rest Day

If we haven’t needed this extra day (from any delays at various creek and the river crossings), this is our ‘rest day’. The campsite is well positioned and can be a chance to dry clothing or relax and take a deserved break. You may like to try your hand at fishing or explore the nearby coast.

 

Day Six
Distance: 9 – 11 km
Estimated Time: 4 – 5 hours

We head around the bay and Over Menzies Bluff, along the coast we find ourselves on Prion Beach a 6km jewel of white sand stretching to the mouth of New River Lagoon. At the lagoon we board rowboats for the crossing then again climbing inland around Wierah Hill and diverting to before diverting to the nights camp at beautiful Osmiridium Beach.

 

Day Seven
Distance: 10 km
Estimated Time: 4 – 5 hours

Forested ridges and small bays include views to spectacular sea cliffs. A shorter day which allows time to explore Surprise Bay with its rich fossil record and immerse in a range of habitat as we cross the headland to Shoemaker Bay and our campsite above Granite Beach. A great site above a setting of jumbled boulders and a backdrop of the towering fluted cliffs, the culmination of the end of the South Cape Range.

 

Day Eight
Distance: 10 km
Estimated Time: 7 – 8 hours

A day of challenge, we cross the second major obstacle of the South Coast Track, South Cape Range. If we are lucky the weather will pro vide views which make the boggy sections easier to ignore. Views over the South Cape and north to Pindars Peak and other challenging icons of the southwest. The track eventually gets easier as we drop down to drier rolling hills and our campsite immediately following a wade through the breakers of South Cape Rivulet… we are almost there!

 

Day Nine
Distance: 10 km
Estimated Time: 4 – 5 hours

An easy beach stroll with some short climbs over sand dunes and Coal Bluff. We pass Lion Rock and turn inland. A couple of ambling hours on boardwalk and formed track heading north through Blowhole Valley brings us out at Recherche Bay and Cockle Creek. Our bus journey back to Hobart can be with mixed feelings as we approach civilisation. This true wilderness journey will no doubt leave memories revisited over a lifetime.