Tasmanian Trail here we come!
Meet Tony aka Darb, Tasmanian born and bred, Tony has put a lot of effort and planning into this adventure. His lovely sister Lisa let us bunker down at her house at Devonport. Lisa lives very close to the start of the trail.
Meet Eric, a mountain biking veteran with extensive biking adventuring experience in several countries. Eric is someone you want by your side when out in the wilderness, his knowledge and wisdom is outstanding.
And meet me, the aspiring adventure seeker still learning the ropes. I feel blessed to have Darb and Eric wth me.
We had spent three days driving from Brisbane to Dover to drop Darb’s car off (end of the trail for us) and the weather was overcast and raining most of the way through Tasmania. However today we woke to a balmy but perfect day! It was about 4 degrees when we woke but the sun warmed our bodies as we rode off.
After final adjustments to our bike setups we briskly got going via a quick stop for coffee.
Leaving Devonport, We crossed over the Mersey River bridge heading towards Latrobe on River road.
Following the Eastern bank of the river.
We soon reached the official Tasmanian Trail marker to signify the start of the trail at Latrobe.
Latrobe is the home of the Australian axeman’s hall of fame showcasing Australia’s wood-chopping champions.
We then cruised through the rich agricultural farmlands of northern Tasmania towards Railton.
Tasmania has an international reputation for top quality produce grown in some of the purest environments in the world.
We soon reached the Mersey River again. We left the trail for a bit and rolled along the banks to admire it’s beauty.
We then joined back up onto the trail. Our fat tyres crunched the gravel underneath as we joyfully commented about how wonderful the weather was.
We crossed the Mersey River over a new bridge that replaced the old one which was washed away in the previous flood.
Darb had spent allot of time planning and GPS plotting our intended route and I also noticed the track was well marked. Props to Darb and the trail volunteers.
Soon after, we rolled into Railton.
This friendly horse trotted over to me as I was getting the camera out.
The young lady working in the coffee shop was pleased to see us as she was an accomplished cycle tourer herself.
Eric enjoyed a coffee while admiring his bike.
We then refilled our water bottles at the local park and pedalled towards Sheffield on the rail trail from Railton.
Sheffield is the town of murals. The first town mural was painted in Sheffield in December 1986. Since then over 60 murals depicting the area’s rich history and beautiful natural scenery have been painted on walls throughout the town and buildings along the roadside.
Sheffield had lunch waiting for us but first Eric spotted this ‘Marshall’ Steam roller and got a bit excited!
Sheffield had a war memorial. This reminded me how lucky we all are to be free today. I was taken back by the large list of names, many brothers and sisters from the same family. Lest we forget!
After lunch and filling the water bottles, we headed off towards the Gog range National Park. Sheffield sits in the foothills of the magnificent Great Western Tiers, with Mount Roland the stand out feature.
We then started climbing up over Gog range.
We enjoyed the quiet dirt roads towards our chosen destination for the night, the bank of the mighty Mersey River.
We set up camp, had afternoon snoozes, ate dinner and enjoyed a warm camp fire.
The sunshine was warm but the temperature was just perfect for riding. We were high spirited and very content. Happy days!
We rode 79.5 kilometres and climbed 1,197 metres of elevation gain. (Through this blog when I mention metres up or down, it means elevation change, not distance.)
I would rate today as 6.0 out of 10 on the tough-o-meter.
Here is the elevation chart…