Friday, 24 November 2017

Tom Thumb 2017

Today we're walking to Tom Thumb, behind Mt. Wellington. We were going to do it a week ago but decided it would be too hot, so we did Bluff River Gorge instead.

Well, the weather forecast is much the same with 31C for Hobart and 20C on the top of the mountain, so we went for it.

Fantastic weather as you will see. This isn't a long walk, but is interesting. I've been up Tom Thumb several times over the years, once on my own, but it's been five years and I can't get over how much the track has overgrown.

We park at the larger parking lot overlooking Hobart and set off on a downhill walk on Pinnacle Road to the start of the track. We'll be making a diversion along the way to take a look at the Scout Hut.

I've made a decision that I will not show hut locations on my blog, so I will remove them from my track maps. Anyone that wants to see where we really went can approach me with the appropriate fee and I will happily show them where they went.....

Distances and times I quote at the end of the blog are the actual figures, the graphs and maps are of the modified track.

Off we go!

River Derwent, Tasman Bridge and ship heading upstream
Good start to the day, the ship missed the bridge.

There's a lot of rock up here

Heading down to the start of the Big Bend track

Tasmanian Waratah,
Telopea Truncata

Orchid. Bob missed it

Big Bend Trail
You can see what sort of day it is by the colour of the sky. Not a cloud in sight.

On we go. In a while we turn off towards the Scout Hut.

Mt. Wellington with the transmission towers

Track to the Scout hut

Getting there involves some scrambling over large rocks

Looking south west. Look carefully at the distant ridge line and you can see snow in spots. That's far from here

Some prefer to enjoy the view and will wait for the rest of us to return

The Scout Hut. You can only reach it by climbing down large rocks
CLICK HERE for an interesting history of the hut. 

The interior

Scouting's changed since I belonged. Is there a merit badge for that?

Upper sleeping level. That's the black stove pipe running through all those burlap bags lining the room

Stove on left, utensils on right

CLICK HERE to have a look at the entry in the Hiking in South East Tasmania Blog and see what the interior looked like in 2014. Now that's what it should look like.

Outdoor shower

The way back
We make our way back to the rest of the group and return to the main trail.

The rest of the group enjoying the view

Look carefully

Every thing is in flower

On the trail again

Our destination in the distance
It's warm, but not too bad and it's a pleasant walk, until you remember you have to walk back up.

Morning Tea

Hardy native growing in the middle of the track

Tom Thumb
We explore a short side track before continuing on to the small quarry where the track to the top starts. It's very overgrown compared to the last time we were here.
Starting up

Still smiling

It's not difficult, but there are a lot of large rocks to climb over. 

Getting closer

Looking at the back of Mt. Wellington

The final scramble to the top is actually quite easy and well worth it.

On top. I had lunch at this spot in years past
I'm taking photos and the others have moved off, but I can still hear them.

I follow the sound and find them settling for lunch at a spot with some reasonable views.

The views above are enough to make anyone having lunch...



Down town Collinsvale
Lunch finished, we start back the way we came. It's actually easier climbing down and it doesn't take us long.

Going down

Track! what track?

Head count at the bottom is close enough, so we start back
It's hot and we'll have a steady climb in a little while so we take it easy with regular breaks for water.

Going up

Looks like someone in another group had a dummy spit!

Climb over, down to Pinnacle Road and back to the cars
We had 11 walkers and covered 8.27km in 4:29hrs. As I said at the start this is different from published data because I deleted the information re the route to the Scout Hut.

Using the formula that for every 100 metres climbed you can add a kilometre, you can add another 8.46km and make it 16.73km, if that makes you feel better.

It's a short walk and can be made longer, but on a warm day like today I found it very enjoyable and thanks to Bob for leading us.

Click here to download GPX file

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