Rocky Cape National Park 2017 Mar
So near and yet so far … it is perhaps a mini travesty that we have lived in north Tasmania for as long as we have done, and yet have never put a foot inside Rocky Cape National Park. I must say, the fact that camping is not permitted there has had a huge amount to do with our absence. I am not a day-tripper sort of person.
However, on the final morning of our Tarkine adventure (on the fifth and final day), our leader had scheduled a short visit to this spot. I was most curious to see what I had been missing out on all these years. We drove in as far as we could before a final turnoff, when we chose right, following a sign that pointed to the beach, rather than left to boat launches, a day picnic area, and other such wonders. From our parking spot, we had a lovely hour-long wander around the coast, sometimes bushbashing (there was no track here) and other times following the rocky shore. I enjoyed the little coves of turbulent water, especially as the sky was still steely grey after the rain of the previous night.
After the others had departed on the way back to Hobart, we had a quick explore of the left-hand fork that we had rejected earlier. Here, I was amazed and not entirely pleased to find houses in a national park. I can understand that if they were there first, this creates an obvious problem. I did not, however, appreciate the fact that they were there with their dogs, whilst we were not only not allowed to camp, but were not even allowed to let our car wheels go past a certain turnoff, and yet their dogs roamed the waters of the nearest beach. When is a National Park not a National Park? Perhaps here. There seemed to be a reversal of expected values. I have nothing against dogs on beaches. My dog loves beaches. But when dogs are allowed but I am restricted, now that I object to. We didn’t stay long at Rocky Cape. One day I will disobey these inconsistent instructions and camp here to see early morning light at this place.
2 Replies to “Rocky Cape National Park 2017 Mar”
Rocky Cape is good if you know where to see the nicer bits, and where the tracks are. However, the only “good” is the scenery, and the rare vegetation, if that’s what you like. Overburnt, full of Phytophthera, poorly maintained, weedy in some beach areas, and boring in the long central overland track sections, it nonetheless has a charm in some parts.
Slashing along firebreaks and tracks by contractors has taken the joy out of much of this park. It is most probably going to be opened up to bikers, which will make it entirely unsuited for both walkers and wildlife. It seems that like many other reserves/parks, the facilities (all on the edges – nothing in the centre) are more important than protection of the very reason – nature – that people come to see it. There are some Aboriginal-used caves, but access is precluded by gawky platforms, and some are weed havens. As for the houses, they are clearly more important than the natural values.
Not recommended for tourist visitors. Effort outweighs benefit.
Thanks for you comment Ian. It is so sad that our former areas of enjoyment are all being taken away from us, and that the so-called custodians of our natural areas are the very people destroying it for the sake of tourist money (often).