Routeburn Track to Harris Saddle & Conical Hill, Mt Aspiring National Park NZ

The Routeburn is a classic New Zealand multi-day walk, and the section in Mt Aspiring National Park to Harris Saddle, with a side trip to Conical Hill, is probably the most stupendously picturesque. You should do it.

One of New Zealand’s classic multi-day walks, the Routeburn Track can be walked from the Glenorchy end to Harris Saddle in a long day. The views are fabulous, and you can also fit in a short but steep side trip to the summit of Conical Hill (1515m) for even more fantastic views. It’s inevitably popular, but probably won’t be as busy as you think. It rates as possibly the best walk we’ve done to date, although with a well graded track and good facilities, it lacks the remoteness of some other great NZ day walks. Continue reading “Routeburn Track to Harris Saddle & Conical Hill, Mt Aspiring National Park NZ”

Routeburn Track to Routeburn Flats, Mt Aspiring National Park NZ

The first section of this classic multi-day walk follows the Routeburn through beech forest as it tumbles down from Routeburn Flats. You are surrounded by high peaks the whole way, and there are uninterrupted views of these as you approach Flats Hut.

The Routeburn Track is one of New Zealand’s classic multi-day tramps. Walking through the Mt Aspiring portion of the walk as far as Routeburn Flats makes for an excellent day hike of moderate difficulty. The track follows the Routeburn through beech forest as it tumbles down from the flats, and there are views through the trees of the burn and high peaks along the way. When you get to the flats the scenery opens up to provide uninterrupted views of the Humboldt Mountains, and Flats Hut makes is a good spot for lunch before heading back the way you came. Continue reading “Routeburn Track to Routeburn Flats, Mt Aspiring National Park NZ”

Mt Crichton to pt. 1723m, near Queenstown NZ

A really excellent walk to a minor peak on Mt Crichton. Fabulous mountain and lake views almost the whole way, and a good work out too.

The climb up Mt Crichton near Queenstown was one of our best walks to date. And even if you don’t visit one of the summit peaks you’ll still feel a sense of achievement and wonder by going as far as the minor peak at 1723m. Be prepared for quite a work out though, as much of it is steep and on a sometimes obscure route. Continue reading “Mt Crichton to pt. 1723m, near Queenstown NZ”

The Castle, Morton National Park NSW

Surely one of the best walks in NSW, summiting The Castle (847m) in Morton National Park provides spectacular views of the surrounding cliffs and plateaus in the Budawang Range. It’s only for fit walkers, and those willing to do a fair bit of scrambling, and also those with a reasonable head for heights.

These pics are from our second time up The Castle (847m), one of NSW’s most challenging and spectacular day walks, situated in Morton National Park on the South Coast of NSW near Ulladulla. The views are probably the best I’ve seen in NSW, and with just enough exposure near the top to get the adrenaline flowing, it makes a memorable walk for any fit bushwalker. Continue reading “The Castle, Morton National Park NSW”

Mt Rufus Circuit, Cradle Mt-Lake St Clair NP, Tasmania

This longish walk to the summit of Mt Rufus (1416m) takes in a variety of vegetation types and provides 360 degree views of the Tasmanian Central Highlands, mostly from a distance.

Summiting Mt Rufus (1416m) provides extensive views of the surrounding area, including many other high peaks, although the summit itself is not much to write home about, and the distant mountains were difficult to capture with my camera phone. I probably enjoyed the walk as much for the variety of vegetation we passed through, which included myrtle beech, tall eucalypt woodlands, snow gums, alpine heath and grasslands. Continue reading “Mt Rufus Circuit, Cradle Mt-Lake St Clair NP, Tasmania”

Mt Anne, Southwest NP Tasmania

Probably the most spectacular Australian walk I’ve done to date, there are knock your hiking socks off views all the way along the track to the summit of Mt Anne (1423m) in Tasmania’s remote Southwest National Park. Huge lakes, rugged cliffs, mountain peaks, alpine plants, and more boulders than you can shake your walking poles at.

Climbing Mt Anne is a long day walk, and a long drive to get there from pretty much anywhere, but totally worth the effort. The scenery is just fantastic: there are vistas taking in much of Tasmania’s Southwest Wilderness, excellent views of the enormous Lake Pedder, and you get up close and personal with dramatic cliffs, countless boulders, and delicate spongy alpine plants. And with 1420m change in elevation it’s a good work out too. The final climb to the summit is up through shear cliffs and not for those afraid of heights, but even if you don’t do this bit it’s well worth walking to their base.  (I stopped just short of the summit myself.) Continue reading “Mt Anne, Southwest NP Tasmania”

Collinsvale Peaks Track, Wellington Park, Tasmania

This long but reasonably straightforward walk takes in three peaks in one day, each of them offering 360 views of the surrounding alpine plateau and further afield. The area feels fairly remote, but is only a 45 minute drive from Hobart.

The area west of Hobart known as Wellington Park is an alpine plateau that contains a number of accessible peaks over 1000m of elevation.The walk depicted here takes in three peaks in one day – Collins Bonnet (1246m), Trestle Mountain (1160m), and Collins Cap (1098m). The walking is mostly through forest or woodland, but you pass through the tree line on the way up each mountain, which provide unobstructed and quite extensive views of the protected area and beyond. The initial climb is through attractive rainforest where the tree ferns are flourishing. Continue reading “Collinsvale Peaks Track, Wellington Park, Tasmania”

Hartz Peak & Mount Snowy Track, Hartz Mountains NP Tasmania

The route to Hartz Peak (1254m) and Mount Snowy (1160m) makes for excellent alpine walking, with a variety of alpine plants, rugged peaks, and extensive views.

The weather put on a bit of a show for us when we climbed to Hartz Peak and Mount Snowy, situated high up in Hartz Mountains National Park about 90 minutes from Hobart. Starting off in sleet, we ascended through a thin layer of snow into thick atmospheric mist, which then cleared to reveal excellent views of the surrounding area. This is a classic Tasmanian alpine day walk.  Continue reading “Hartz Peak & Mount Snowy Track, Hartz Mountains NP Tasmania”

Mt Wellington Circuit, Wellington Park, Tasmania

Mt Wellington provides the backdrop to the city of Hobart, and climbing it makes for a convenient day walk with great views from the summit of Hobart and the Derwent Estuary. You can drive all the way to these views, but they won’t look as good 😉

Climbing Mt Wellington is a must do for any traveller to Hobart, as it’s just a 15 minute drive to the foot of the mountain, (also accessible by public transport), and the summit provides great views over the city and Derwent Estuary. Despite the 940m of ascent anybody can do it… and that’s because there’s a road all the way to the summit. But as with meeting any goal, the rewards are better savoured when you’ve worked for it, so get off your arse and get walking 🙂 Continue reading “Mt Wellington Circuit, Wellington Park, Tasmania”

Quamby Bluff Track, Great Western Tiers, Tasmania

The straightforward but steep climb up to Quamby Bluff (1228m) passes through myrtle beech forest and boulder fields, finishing in heath on the summit plateau, where there are extensive views of the surrounding area, including the Great Western Tiers.

We did this walk the morning we arrived on the ferry from Melbourne, as it was on our way to Hobart via a scenic route over the Central Highlands. It starts off in attractive myrtle beech forest, passes through large boulder fields, more forest, then up onto the summit plateau which is heathland. About 6km/500m of sometimes steep climbing to 1228m above sea level. There are good views of the Great Western Tiers and farmland to the north. We also visited nearby Liffey Falls (a short drive away). Continue reading “Quamby Bluff Track, Great Western Tiers, Tasmania”