Thursday, 31 May 2012

Strahan 20/5/12 to 22/5/12

We set our alarm and packed up in Hobart in the dark for our long trip to Strahan. Although it's only 300km we have been advised that it a very hilly and windy drive and will take most of the day to get there. We set off at 7.00am and arrived in Strahan at 2.30pm - 7 and a half hours later.  We had to make a small stop to do a favour for a friend and put some flowers on her Grandparents grave in a little town called Ouse. We then stopped in Derwent Bridge along the way to check out "The Wall in the Wilderness". This is a wall carving that a local carver commenced in 2005 and will be around 100 metres long in 2015 when he finishes. It depicts different eras from Tasmania's past. Very spectacular a very talented man.

Further along on this trip we drove through the town of Queenstown. This is something else, with the area around the town completely devoid of any vegetation due to the mining practices of past years. The area looks like some sort on moonscape and nothing like anything I have ever seen before. My feeling was to keep driving and under no circumstances get out of the car.

On arriving in Strahan, after we had set up, we went for a wander through town. Very quaint little town and obviously very tourist orientated with lots of accommodation and shops with local product. However, very quiet for this time of year. The boys found a wood shop selling Huon Pine (native to Tassie - some of the Huon Pine trees can be over 35 thousand years old). They decided to get some pieces to take home for Grandpa to carve something special for them.

Next day we did the boat trip out into the Macquarie Harbour and up the Gordon River. We ventured out through "Hells Gate" which is the passage out to the Atlantic Ocean. We just went to the opening for a look and I am quite happy we went no further. Even on a moderate weather day it looks fairly scary out in the open water. We did a tour of Sarah Island which was once a convict settlement before heading up the Gordon for a brief look at this mighty river. We again got off the boat, this time to do a rain forest walk and, among other things, check out the trees and were shown Huon Pines said to be over 3,000 years old. On our trip back down the Gordon we had a very tasty lunch, which included smoked salmon.

"The Wall in the Wilderness" the wall of wood carvings is inside this building. Note the snow up close to the building. You were allow to take photo's inside.

The sculptor and part of his work. (mural)

The quaint cottages in Strahan

On board the boat to tour Macquarie Harbour and the Gordon River

Cold, windy and wild, but a lot of fun

Hells Gate - that's the Atlantic Ocean out there. Next stop Antarctica

Sister Mary Margaret and Jacob

Boys up on the top deck

Calmer conditions as we enter the Gordon River

Rainforest walk

And lunch is served

Coming back into port

We came across a local whittler who was a bit of a character and a talker.  He has an amazing imagination with great wit. With the fire wood that he collects he then makes them come to life with minimal whittling.

Work of the local Strahan whittler - has to be seen to be believed

Crazy Boys

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