Thursday, 12 May 2016

The Western Arthur Range - Southwest National Park, Tasmania


We awake to wind roaring across the range and powerful gusts pulling the guy ropes as the tent walls flex and bend. A southerly, blowing unobstructed for thousands of kilometres across the Southern Ocean is crashing into our mountains. But, it is not until we finally emerge, at dawn, that the ferocity of the weather hits home. 

We are camped on one of the wooden platforms beneath the southern cirque of Lake Oberon, high on the Western Arthur Range. Just metres away the surface of the lake is being swept into a spectacular, swirling vortex of mist that rises 10 metres into the air. Waves, driven by the wind, surge up the small creek that feeds the lake, forcing it to flow backwards. The simple act of walking is a struggle. We retreat, stumbling, back to our tent. 

This is meant to be our day for traversing high across the mountain peaks of Capricorn and Pegasus but as a wall of black clouds approach from the south a lay day is called. It is another round in our Western Arthur's weather spanking.