Winding its way through the glacially carved landscape of central Tasmania, the Overland Track is one of Australia’s most iconic bushwalks.
Stretching 65 kilometers through Cradle Mountain-Lake St Claire National Park, this 6-day trek begins at Ronny Creek in Cradle Valley and journeys through hidden rainforests, open valleys, across towering waterfalls and even Mount Ossa – Tasmania’s highest mountain peak at 1,617 meters above sea level – before finishing at Narcissus Hut at Lake St Clair.
If you are a keen bushwalker and want to attempt the journey, here are a few critical pieces of information that you need to know.
Getting There and Away
Tiger Airways, Jetstar, and Virgin Airways have regular flights to both Launceston and Hobart from as little at $60 one-way depending on the season.
If you prefer to arrive on four wheels, you can reach the Apple Isle via Melbourne on the Spirit of Tasmania.
Prices on the Bass Strait cruise liner will set you back are $289 for an Ocean Recliner seat over the Christmas break or $587 for a Deluxe Cabin.
Once you reach the port at Devonport, it is about a 3-hour drive to Cradle Mountain, or you can catch a bus via Cradle Mountain Coaches.
Bookings are required for each walking season (1 October to 31 May) of the Overland Track, and walkers will be required to pay an Overland Track Fee of $200 per person.
This fee only applies during the peak walking season, and all proceeds go towards the long-term sustainability of the Track.
In addition, you will have to purchase a National Park Entry Pass to be inside the National Park.
For walkers of the Overland Track, it is not uncommon for snow to appear in the middle of summer as a large part of the track is above 1,000 meters sea level along exposed plateaus.
For this reason, it is essential to stay warm with breathable clothing designed to protect you from the wind, snow, and rain.
Also, while there are huts to sleep in at every stop, you still must carry a tent.
The cabins can be full of walkers, especially in the high season, and you cannot book a room in the cabin beforehand.
Therefore, you must be prepared to camp if there is no room.
The huts also do not have cooking facilities, utensils, or food, so you must bring your own.
Ensure you always have a map of the Track with you and never walk alone.
If you are flying solo, you can hire a licensed guide to escort you along the Track.
These can be booked on the day or before your journey, and for further information on booking guides, visit www.discovertasmania.com.
Moreover, many people are surprised at the variety of track surfaces on the Overland Track.
Two-thirds of the track is natural surface, which could include boulders, tree roots, forest litter, gravel, and mud. So you must have a pair (or two) of good quality walking boots.
While the Overland Track has its challenges, it is an experience that should be on the bucket list of every bushwalker.
If you are interested in finding out more about the Overland Track, check out the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service website.
This post was brought to you by Discover Tasmania.