Thursday, January 6, 2011

Walk Number 1.....Crescent Bay 29/12/2010



Although I'd set myself this challenge for 2011 I did get a couple of days headstart and undertook this walk in the dying days of 2010....strike while the iron's hot!

Crescent Bay hit the news in 2008 when entrepreneur Dick Smith proposed to build an eco-lodge there.  Following much lobbying by local residents and the local council rejecting the project on environmental concerns the development was canned.

Access to the area is restricted to walking tracks...one coming in from the south from Remarkable Caves via Maingon Blowhole & Mt Brown, this route takes around 4 - 5 hours for the round trip. The route I chose to take on this occasion was a 20 - 30 minute walk (one way) coming in from the west via Dog Bark Rd.  As my 77 year old Mother-in-law was keen to do the walk with me this approach seemed the most sensible. I definately will be doing the longer walk at some stage as this is by far the more scenic route. 

After leaving the car in the small carpark at the end of Dog Bark Rd access to the walking track is via a dirt road through private property....Dick Smith's I presume. There are a couple of "private property...keep out" signs around but as none threatened to shoot us on sight we weren't detered from taking this route, nor apparently were the half dozen or so other walkers we came across. The road inclines steadily for the first 500 metres or so...just enough to get the heart pumping. Not much in the way of scenery just bracken ferns and cleared land.  We spent about 20 minutes walking in this terrain until the road ended quite abruptly...ok, so where to now?  We backtracked about 100 metres and found a walking track which was heading in the direction of the coast so it seemed the obvious way to go...that and the absence of any other choices.  This track was fairly easy to traverse....finally we caught sight of Tasman Island in the distance as well as some substantial sand dunes.  At this stage the track turned into a sandy path and lead directly to the base of the dunes.  

This was the only access to the beach...so take a deep breath and run up the dune...I find this the best way to get through the soft sand of dunes...go slowly and you normally want to give up half way because your calves feel like they're about to explode.  The fairly challenging ascent was well worth the effort when you witness the fantastic views that greet you at the top.  A panorama straight out of the glossiest tourist publication. The scene encompasses magnificent views of Tasman Island, Cape Pillar and the Blade.  Crescent Bay itself...wow!! in my opinion rivals what is widely renowned as Tassie's premier bay, Wineglass Bay. 

This is a great short walk to get you to what certainly is a magical place... and well worth the calf muscle soreness!

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