An Autumn Getaway – Tasmania’s Northern Reaches

Taking advantage of the longer Easter break this year, Dylan and I stole away on a 10-day trip to Tasmania’s northern regions in the hopes of catching the beautiful autumn colours on display.  We spent 3 nights in Cradle country, and then some time exploring the north-west before dashing off to the east and the Bay of Fires, selecting just a few photographic locations to give ourselves the best opportunity of catching the light.

The trip was, in essence, a last ‘hiking’ holiday before we welcome our new addition to the family in late August.  Dylan went exploring the longer walks and climbing to the summit of Cradle Mountain while I opted for the shorter, easier walks around Dove Lake and surrounds.  Luckily my thermals were stretchy enough to fit over my growing belly, although the weather actually proved to be quite mild in the end.

L: Cataract Gorge Dawn, R: Evening at Dove Lake

Sunrise at Cradle Mountain

Star Trails over Cradle Mountain

Many of the trees were dressed in yellow and orange hues already, but it turned out to be quite difficult finding red fagus leaves (I found one little bush!).  It was still a little too early, and not quite cold enough for the planned ‘frosty fagus’ image we envisaged, but it was nevertheless a spectacular sight to see the golden colours surrounding the lakes and creeping up the mountainside.

Autumn Fagus

Crater Lake

We had a few waterfalls on our list to visit, and we were pleased that there was enough water in them at this time of year.  Many of them are accessible on very short walks, which I certainly appreciated.  Unfortunately the weather did not always cooperate and due to the slower pace I had to take we often arrived at midday when the sun was directly on the falls, making exposures difficult to judge.  On some occasions it did make for some unique lighting opportunities though.

Halls Falls

Liffey Falls

L: Bridal Veil Falls, R: Shroomville!

In the quest for a new, personal take on the same oft-photographed subjects, Dylan often goes to some lengths to find a composition to call his own.  This often involves kicking off his shoes and going for a wander in the icy cold waters of the streams at the waterfalls.  Needless to say I remained on the banks, preferring to be warm and dry!

Our last few days were spent on the east coast.  We used St. Helen’s as a base for our ventures to the Bay of Fires and came to know the rocks of Binalong Bay very well.  There were a few attempts at sunset, but in the end the clouds would not relent and there were no spectacular magenta displays to speak of.  Just a hint of pink and orange (in the wrong direction, I might add), so we made do with what we had.

Couta Rocks, Tarkine (northwest Tasmania)

Binalong Bay Sunset

Binalong Bay Rocks

Moulting Bay, St. Helens

After Bay of Fires we left for a super-quick visit to Freycinet NP.  We had hoped for some clear blue skies to bring out the colours of Wineglass Bay but alas, our plans were foiled again.  A dense cover of cloud persisted most of the day, so I actually took a break and sat down with a cup of tea to watch a DVD whilst Dylan went for a jog to the Wineglass Bay lookout.  At sunset we had our most spectacular display of light for the whole trip – which I missed because I opted to stay indoors!  Dylan was out as usual though, so he caught the gorgeous red light falling on the iconic Hazards as the sun slipped beneath the clouds into a rare stretch of blue sky.

The Hazards, Coles Bay

A last sunrise on the day we had to leave looked promising before the light was fizzled out by cloud cover yet again.  We packed up our gear and headed back to Launceston to catch our flight back to Adelaide, feeling that although there were not as many dramatic light opportunities as we had hoped to capture, we managed a large percentage of good photographs, and possibly even a few portfolio shots.

A local eyes us at Bicheno Blowhole

Maybe there’s time for one last short holiday next month…



Posted on May 19, 2011, in Photography, Tasmania and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Wonderful trip ! What a chance.

  2. Very nice story and mainly photos, Tasmania is one of my dream locations for photography and this is a really big inspiration. I admire diversity of photos that you took there, each one is unique with specific objects and atmosphere. Congratulations and good luck with your great work in the future!

    • Thanks Jarda, Tasmania is a beautiful place to visit and has some pristine wilderness areas. It is certainly worth a trip there, and a relatively long one at that, or you’ll find that you’ll be planning a return trip!

  3. Those are some epic shots! Looks like an amazing holiday too!

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