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The Cradle Mountain experience

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Last night before going to sleep The Princess made the call NOT to go to cradle mountain Sunday as was our original intention. She wanted to spring clean again and thought the weather might be a bit cloudy, spoiling the view of the mountain. “Yes Dear”, I dutifully replied, “Anything you say Dear.” and off to sleep, we went.

I awoke to find The Princess already awake laying in bed staring up at the ceiling. Then she said it…”I was just thinking”… Now I’ve come to realise that those words are a code and I’ve broken the code. What she’s really saying is “Jonesy, your life is about to change”. Sometimes just for the day, sometimes permanently, but change is imminent. “I think we should go to Cradle Mountain today!”

Ok, so now we know what’s happening today!

We packed lunch, our new warm clothes, our sturdy shoes, and the camera of course, and we’re off. It’s about 80 kilometres to Cradle Mountain from Devonport and you pass through the usual spectacular country that keeps your head turning in every direction. We passed huge apple and pear orchards and mile after mile of rolling hills and adorable places.

We arrived at a small town called Sheffield about 30ks out of Devonport. This town is famous for its murals which change every year with a painters competition. Every shop and building on the main street has these spectacular murals. We discovered Kerrie’s jacket had been left at home and it was very cold in Sheffield but we knew it was much warmer than it would be at Cradle Mountain. Fortunately, we found a souvenir shop just opening and on display were a heap of reasonably priced warm jackets. When Kerrie told the lady about leaving her jacket she laughed and told us that yesterday she sold 27 jackets for just the same reason!

On we went to Cradle mountain and we were soon to experience another amazing day. We got to the cradle mountain info centre where we parked and take a shuttle bus to Dove lake, as far as vehicles could travel. We had bought a $60 pass on the ferry over to Tasmania which allows us free access to all of Tasmania’s national parks. It was freezing with the wind chilling the skin and penetrating to the bones. After a hot cup of coffee, and donning our warm clothes off we went.

We got the shuttle to drop us off at Snake Hill where we had the unique and wonderful experience of walking about 2.1 kilometres to Ronny Creek where we would catch another shuttle to the mountain.
This walk was amazing. We met not one other human on the trek and the changes in scenery and the different plants and flowers were fascinating. Only the toughest of the tough survive in this environment and the plants represent that.
Kerrie saw her first ever glimpse of snow and I’ve never seen her so excited. She actually had tears of joy, not only at the snow but at every unique moment of this amazing trek.

We got to Ronny Creek and had lunch overlooking this idyllic spot. After lunch, we caught the shuttle to Dove Lake, Kerrie was excitedly reciting to everyone who would listen on the bus how wonderful the walk was.

Arriving at Dove lake gave us our first full-on, in-your-face view of Cradle Mountain.
It is wild, rugged big and spectacular.

We trekked around the lake in absolute awe of the landscape and the scenery. The weather evolved into the most beautiful crystal clear day with a deep blue sky and none of the rain, sleet and snow that they had experienced last week.
The walks we took around the Cradle Mountain National Park will forever live in our memories.

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