On this Adamsfield Camping trip, Jacinta and I can now officially say we have travelled to every drivable corner of Tasmania.Â We explore an old mining town that once housed up to 2000 people lock the hubs in and explore the area and we come across an abundance of different varieties of fungi.
After work on Thursday, we were off and had a rather long drive ahead of us to Arthur’s Lakes to camp the night. As we were only stopping there for one night and seeing that the weather wasn’t the best we thought we would have no worries getting a spotÂ but we where surprised when we were told that Pumphouse camp area was booked out but the caretaker there was a great bloke and allowed us to camp in the day park area much to the disgust to the banana bender that was already there.
After a typical nights sleep for me when camping I was up at the crack of dawn so I thought I would take advantage of the situation and check out the sunrise.From here we were off to Mt Field to meet up with Dirk and Michelle and get the key for Adamsfield but just after we left Bradley and Heidi received word from Dirk and it all bad news… The Triton Blew the Turbo going up the slight hill near Penguin (typical haha) Luckily they had a trusty Toyota sitting at home so they limped the Triton back and swapped for Toyota reliability. Â
Once again Toyota Reliability.
After the news, we realised we had a bit more time up our sleeve so we played tourist and checked out Steppes homestead and community hall. I never got a photo of the Hall but I did get a photo of the fireplace inside the hall and was very surprised to see a big fungi growing in it, at first I thought someone just put it there as a bit of a joke but when I went to move it, it was solid in the ash and coal.The next stop was the Steppes Homestead. This is a historic site and was home to the Wilson family for well over 100 years it tells the story of the sheep farming in the district. (More info here.)Â
From here we made our way to Mt Field National Park and instantly felt like I was in Melbourne and couldn’t wait to get the key and get out of there.Â So after going through the process and paperwork we finally got the key and hightailed it out of there.Â After about another hour or so we finally arrived in Adamsfield Camp Ground and set up camp.Â For whatever reason, I didn’t take a photo of the campground but it has a great little open hut there for the constant wet cold weather.Â After setting up we decided to go and quickly check out the rest of the track before heading out to open the gate for Dirk and Michelle.
The next day we were up early and ready to get out exploring again.Â Bradley, Heidi, Dirk and Michelle had all been down here before so Jacinta and I had our own personal tour guides for the day as we where yet to check out the area. First up we drove down to Scotts peak to check out the top end of Lake PedderÂ
Scotts Peak from Edgar PondÂ
Scotts Peak from Red KnollÂ
The Sun trying to break through over the Sisters (Mt Sarah Jane, Mt Eliza, Eve Peak and Mt Anne).
From here we went and checked out the Creepy Crawly walk which is only about 100m long and the sign says it takes 20-min return. We all had a bit of a laugh at this thinking parks had gone completely mad… But it took me about 40-min. The fungi were absolutely everywhere and the variety was amazing so I tried to get some shots but they where all shit, unfortunately.
After me wasting time not getting any decent shots we made our way to the Gordon Dam and this was a spectacular engineering feat.Â It is the highest dam wall in Australia and suicidal people ab-sail off it for fun. Just standing here and seeing people hanging off the wall was making my stomach churn but I pushed myself to go down and walk the wall.
Absolutely insane.Â You can only touch the wall for the first 15m and then after that your just swinging in the breeze as the dam wall is built curved for strength. Â As much as it is an engineering masterpiece it would have been also prettyÂ spectacular to of seen the area before the dam as the Gorge it was built it also look impressiveÂ
From here we decided to have some lunch and Jacinta forgot to pack the bread so we unfortunately had to go to the Strathgorden Chalet for lunch…. and a few beers and even come across a very friendly Rosella.
After a couple of beers and enjoying the warmth we decided to head back to camp for the day but not before checking out a few huts on the way and some waterfalls.Â
These two were surprisingly close to the road but by the looks have had very little use over the last few years.Â
This one wasn’t far have been completely reclaimed by the bush.Â Also along the way, we came across some massive clumps of coral fungi just growing on the side of the track. Not far from one of the Huts we found a big shaggy fungus also.
Just before the Turn off to Adamsfield, we noticed a waterfall marked on the map (Radcliff Falls) but unfortunately it was impossible to get a shot off without falling to a painful death so we decided to go around the other side and check out Adams Falls. this was nearly just as hard to get a photo off but just managed to get a little bit of it in the shot. This waterfall was quite impressive so I thought I would get the drone out and do a flyby but it looks like the controller may have gone to drone heaven as it didn’t want to turn on even though it was charged the night before so I was pretty annoyed at this stage so I took a photo of other fungi to get my mind off the disappointment haha.
From here we went a little further up the track as Bradley said there was a good view which there wasÂ
This would have to be one of my favourite plants in Tassie (Pandani) and a good view to go with it.Â Also nearby right on the edge of the road was a small waterfall. After taking in the spectacular views of the Gordon Dam we head back to camp for the night got the fire roaring and settled in for a few more beers.
The next morning after an extra hours sleep from daylight savings ending we decided to go and have a proper look around Adamsfield. But before we left nature called and I was off on a toilet run and came across an old Pipeline. I haven’t found any info on this yet but it went at least until Clarks Huts The huts were built in the 1940’s by a miner in the area and are now heritage listed and are undergoing repairs so they will hopefully stay intact for another 100 years.Â After the relief, we were on our way back down the Adamsfield Valley to the old township of AdamsfieldÂ
There isn’t much of anything left at the site of the township as over the years it would have been pillaged and or burnt in fires in the area but we did find an old lamp-postÂ
and a bottle dump with some still intact bottles in itÂ
The town is surrounded by old mine working.Â The main commodity was osmiridium, at the time it was known as black gold and was roughly 7 times the value. The township and area were only reasonably short-lived from 1925 to 1945 the war seemed to be the end of the area there was a bit more done in the 1960’s but didn’t last long. for more info click here.
An old Stamper. Â
Ruins located next to the Stamper.
After checking out the history and imagining how it would have been back in the day we decided to leave the area and go and check out something else the area is rich with and that is caves (Junee Florentine Karst).Â The first one was Growling Swallet this is the entrance to the longest cave in Australia measuring up to 30km in length.Â The walk into the swallet was even spectacular with fungi growing everywhere and the variety was unbelievable.
This one wasn’t staged or planned I was concentrating on getting the shot and didn’t even see the bug on top until I went through my photo’s later that day.
After a short walk through a spectacular rainforest
We finally came out at the Swallet and I think most of us were blown away by the sight we saw it looked beautiful but deadly.
Millions of years of water washing away at the limestone were visible and quite breathtaking.Â
After taking in the area we headed back to the busses had some lunch and then decided to go and try to find another cave in the area.Â Unfortunately for us my GPS on my phone decided to stop working and we ended half was up Florentine Peak but we did manage to find a little waterfall and some more fungi.
At this stage I had ruined everyone’s hopes of going to the pub for tea as we where all soaking wet and covered in mud and leeches from the walk to nowhere so I kept my mouth shut and followed to the next destination which was Junee cave which is the outflow to Growling Swallet and in its own right was impressive. Â
After this we head back to camp had a few beers and reflected on another great weekend away in another spectacular part of Tasmania which we will return to for another trip as we missed so much.
Hope you enjoyed.
Full Video Here.