April 7, 2006

Wineglass Bay Lookout

Jay Fraser

Details

  • What: Wineglass Bay Lookout Walk.
  • Duration: 1.5 hrs / 3 km Return
  • Where: Freycinet National Park, Coles bay, East Coast Tasmania.
  • Difficulty Rating: Easy/Medium Climbing, Good Track.
  • Other Options: (Time/Distance from starting point)
  • To Wineglass Bay via Lookout. 3-5 hrs return.
  • To Wineglass Bay via Isthmus Track Circuit. 4-5 hrs / 9.5km return.
  • Summit Mt. Amos via Lookout. 3 hrs / 4km return.
  • Cooks Corner - Hazards track to Hazards Beach, Peninsula Track to Cook's Beach. 8hrs / 20km return.
  • Peninsula Track - Recommended over-night walk from Wineglass Bay up to Mt Graham (580m), along Hazards Beach around Mt Mayson. 10-11 hrs / 30km return.

A Returning Beauty

I had walked this track at least twice before, once about four years ago and another time as a young teenager. Both times I had been with a group and we had walked right down to Wineglass Bay itself, this adds approximately another two hours return, at a steady pace. If you have the time - and the energy - it is well worth the extra couple of hours walking to get right down onto the beach. A couple of occasions, when I had done the walk previous, we actually carried in a packed lunch and had a picnic down on the beach. Of course, if you do carry in food and drink be sure to carry any left overs and packaging out with you!

Getting There

The walk starts from the National Park car park. The park starts not far from the actual town of Coles Bay, in fact it is just around the bay. The easiest way to find the park is to head for Coles Bay, located on Tasmania's East Coast, then follow the signs to Freycinet Lodge. The park's entrance is just along the road from the lodge. As at the writing of this article Freycinet Lodge is one of only three resorts inside the boundaries of the National Park.

The Walk

The track is of substantial width and has many wider points perfect for the well earned rest or for pulling over to let those annoyingly quick walkers go past. On the walk this time where several senior walkers in high spirits!
Along the track are several information signs containing useful tit-bits on some of the local flora and other significant landscape items. One that I remember vivadly is a large rock encountered on the track that has a hollow carved out of its lower side, it looks somewhat like a small cave.
Ascending the saddle, the view on the Coles Bay side is a very enjoyable revelation. Its view is also another good excuse for a well earned drink break. This track is a very popular Tasmanian day walk. Naturally then, if you do this walk, you can expect to be sharing the track with fellow explorers. We found it a great experience to walk along and share brief banter and uplifting comments from passers by. The overall vibe on the track was very positive and I would suggest that it would be impossible for it not to be, simply because of the awe inspiring beauty of the place.
I could confidently say that this is the best short walk I have done in Tasmania. It is a relatively easy walk, the major difficulty factor is the steep incline of the track, however it is easily managed by resting along the way to take in the awesome views or read about some of the local flora or landscapes on the information boards provided.



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