Day 18: Out from Frenchmans Cap

Wednesday December 7, 21.0km/13.1mi

Lake Tahune Hut (24.7/970m) to Frenchmans Cap Carpark (45.7/390m) (TAS)

The group of 5 was still sleeping when I had packed up and left the hut at 7:15am. Hiking along the ridge today felt much different, with a very low cloud ceiling.

All the rocks and roots were just slightly slippery from the condensation and fog, I took my time. The occasional boardwalk helped.

I was exactly at the height of the cloud bottom, so it was a really unique perspective.

The view from Barron Pass felt more cozy than yesterday, ha!

I duplicated the photo I took yesterday of the lakes, to compare the two days. Still nice, but the lakes didn’t have a blue reflection today.

The morning was pretty uneventful, and eventually I descended back into the forest.

I knew I was getting very close to the car when I saw the set of stairs that led to the Franklin River swingbridge.

I got back to the car at 1:30pm, and drove to the cafe that I had seen on my way to the trail yesterday. The Hungry Wombat!

The bison burger tasted amazing, as food usually does after a few long days of hiking. Yes, that is my own personal bottle of ketchup. It only cost $2 at the grocery store and I’ve given up on these small-town cafes attempting to charge you for basic condiments. Ugh.

I spent a couple hours on the internet uploading photos and planning my next hikes. I’m trying to do my hikes in mostly good weather, which I can do by chasing weather around Tasmania, as it’s usually drier in the east. But as I work my way through my list of hikes, there are fewer remaining options to choose from. I still want to do Walls of Jerusalem, Mt Field, Western Arthur Traverse, and Freycinet Circuit. The first 3 are in the alpine, so I need clear weather to do them, especially the very exposed Western Arthur traverse. The weather forecast is for rain tonight and tomorrow morning (and maybe a small amount of snow up high), so I decided to head to Mt Field, which is the least committing of the three alpine options.

Mt Field is a 3-hour drive from the Hungry Wombat cafe, so I drove halfway today, and stayed at a free camping area called Bethune Park. The full moon rising over Meadowbank Lake was sweet.

Tomorrow, I’ll head to Mt. Field for a 2-day loop hike… unless the weather forecast changes again!

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