What do you do if you have time on your hands in Hobart? Go shopping? Not in your life. For me, the answer is to use the time to climb a mountain, and that’s just what I did last Thursday, having driven down earlier than needed for safety reasons.
Having breakfasted at home in Launceston (taking care to pump myself full of caffein), I drove down, bypassing not only boring shops but also alluring cafes and brasseries, and went straight to the Big Bend on Wellington. Work first, reward later.
I had chosen a route to climb Collins Bonnet from here, as I will use the Myrtle Gully track some other time to climb Trestle Mountain, and I only wanted to do one mountain today. This route is longer in distance (and time) than the alternative, but I was in no rush. I had snacks on board and not having any kind of time estimate did not bother me. Maybe some time in the future I’ll compare times with the other way.
Off I set along the trail in the clear mountain air … down and then along past an open marshy area (no snakes today, which pleased me) up past Mt Connection that I climbed a few weeks ago, down to a saddle, mildly up on a widish forest road and at last I was climbing the actual mountain I had come to see. (More detailed information is on the relevant map. I will post my route when I retrieve my phone).
As I sat on top, munching shortbreads, drinking spring water and surveying my temporary kingdom, I gazed across to Wellington from whence I’d come, a mountain with a far more extensive vista than the one I was on. However, I knew exactly which mountain I would prefer to sit on. Where I was, I could hear nothing but the solitude of wilderness, feel nothing but space and peace and the freedom and independence that accompany an excursion such as this. Here there is music for my soul.
I am always a little worried when I’m not carrying lunch that my shelf-life, which seems remarkably small to me, will terminate before I get to the end if I linger too long. I need feeding at very regular intervals and didn’t want to be late for a now much-needed lunch, so walked with purpose back to the car and, by implication, back to the fine food vendors of Hobart. YUM.
1 hr 49 from Big Bend to top. 10 mins eating. 1 hr 50 back. Total exercise: 3 hrs 39 mins.