I want to tell you about the walk - hiking type walks - I did over Easter in Cradle Mountain. I wish I were clever enough to post some pictures. Cradle Mountain National Park is not far from where I live. It is a landscape formed by glaciers in the ice age and has lovely unspoiled Gondwanaland flora. I did 2 good walks, but I'm going to write about the long one.
On that day we started at 9am and walked up through the forest to Crater lake. We walked up across button grass and through stands of snow gums, through temperate rain forest where you can see Nothofagus gunnii which is a deciduous Tasmanian endemic plant. It has relatives in South America, Chile, so we know it is a Gondwanaland plant. It was just starting to get its yellow autumn colours. The lake is surrounded by steep cliffs, We climbed up past the lake and hauled ourselves up to Marion's Lookout from where you can see many lakes at various levels where the glaciers left them. It was freezing cold.
Then we headed across the plateau. Here are the Alpine plants, cushion plants, made up of lots of different species and making tight clumps which are thousands of years old. If you step on one and leave a foot print, that foot print will take hundreds of years to grow out. So you have to stick to the board walk. Not a lot was flowering at this time of the year but there was spectacular mountain rocket (Belendena montana) with its brilliant red seed pods. Across the plateau it was freezing, mists blowing across from the west. I just kept my head down and my gloves on.
When we got to Kitchener hut, we took a left turn and took a track across the face of Cradle Mountain. There the cushion plants were really thick. We were more sheltered there too. It was the most beautiful part of the walk and less populated too. From there we dropped down a steep track, rock hopping and using chains to help us get down. I put one of my walking poles in my back pack so that I had a spare hand to grab onto tree roots and branches to help me. I was also tired then and was scared of slipping. So I had to take it slowly and carefully. We came to Lake Wilkes, another glacial lake.
And then down down down to the bottom, the shores of Lake Dove and into the Ballroom Forest. Wonderful very ancient rainforest. Huge moss covered trees that would be 2,000 years old. The sound of running water. Fungus of various kinds. An amazing smell. And then we walked along the lake to the car park. This is a wonderful part of the world.
I love your walks in the Lake country. I am a big reader of Arthur Randsom. I love all the Swallows and Amazon books and one day I am going to walk in the Lake district too. I'll be in touch!