Freycinet National Park #1: Mount Amos

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January 25th 2017
Published: September 1st 2018
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It was a very early start! The van ride to Coles Bay was extremely early. I think around 6:30 am. Luckily, the bakery was already open so I could get a coffee to make me slightly more awake and something to munch on. It was a bit nippy outside. Once again, we were the only people on the bus. It was a small van, but it was nice having it all to ourselves. The drive to Coles Bay was pretty short, less than an hour if I remember correctly. The van driver knew exactly where we were staying and dropped us off on the main road nearby. We had a short walk up to the office. Since we had arrived so early, the office wasn't open and we had to wait a while for it to open at around 8 am. When it opened the receptionist let us check in and gave us the key to our room, as it was empty. The hostel is part of a caravan park, so we headed off to find the hostel building. It is really close to the entrance, which is good. We found our room, put the key in the door, opened it, and were surprised to find an old lady in one of the beds. I don't know who was more shocked us or her. We headed back to the reception to ask what was going on. The woman informed us, she'd forgot that the woman had been moved to that room and that she would be gone later in the day. She told us to leave our bags in the room and not to be bothered by the woman as she was proper annoying and they wanted rid of her.

After dumping our stuff and disturbing the woman again, but not feeling guilty at all as she was a pain in the arse, we headed out in the direction of Freycinet National Park. This place is the reason to come to Coles Bay. The receptionist had given us a map and pointed out some of the most popular walks on it. We made a quick pit stop in the shop to grab a snack for later. Then we followed the road round. We could see the water and it looked really beautiful. We walked through the main part of town. I think we were staying more on the outskirts, even though that's where the pub was. After cutting through the town, we were back by the water. We saw a few boat trips going out. We walked along a path that was enclosed by trees and we got a lovely surprise when we got to the end of it, as we came out on a gorgeous, small and sandy beach. It was empty apart from a couple of kayaks heading out for a morning kayak. The views were stunning. We were only at the edge of the national park and I was already impressed. We headed to the park office to buy our parks ass, which turned out just to be a receipt. But at least now we were covered for all the hikes and visits to the national parks that we would do.

The ranger had told us that we were still a few kilometres from the start of the hiking trails proper. He also mentioned that we should try and hitch a ride. Not long after we started hiking up the path, a kind bloke stopped in his car and offered us a lift. Score! The ride saved our legs and a bit of time, maybe an hour. The road was quite windy with a few ups and downs, so I'm glad that we managed to skip it. We had decided that we would head up Mount Amos today to see the views looking down on Wineglass Bay. The sign at the start of the track said it would take between 3 and 5 hours for a round trip journey. We had plenty of time, so set off uphill. Another sign had warned that the climb would be steep and slippery. To be honest, it wasn't that steep and I am not the fittest person in the world and I managed it fine. We did have to do a little scrambling, but nothing too strenuous. As we climbed higher, we were rewarded with gorgeous views looking back over Coles Bay and the surrounding area. It was perfect, not too challenging hiking, gorgeous views and perfect weather. I wish everyday was like this. We definitely stopped a lot on the way up to take a million photos of the beautiful scenery. The hike was also pretty empty, we passed few other people on the trail. After a while, as we came nearer to the top, the rocky surfaces gave way to bush. My friend spotted a snake as we were tramping through. I'm glad she was ahead and that it had slithered away by the time I reached that spot. She said it was only a small one, but being Australian and growing up in the countryside, I don't trust her definition of a small snake. A little while later, we made it to the top of Mount Amos, the views were pretty good, but we headed down the other side a little to the viewpoint. The views from here were utterly spectacular! We were now a little closer to Wineglass Bay and we could see it in all its glory. Mother Nature's amazing beauty. We sat for ages just taking in the view. It is definitely one of the most beautiful scenes I have come across on my travels. I was also surprised by how few people were up there. Only about 5 or so other people came to the viewpoint while we were relaxing there.

We finally managed to tear ourselves away from the view to start our descent. The hike back down Mount Amos wasn't too strenuous and we were greeted with the same views we had seen going up. Since quite a bit of the hike is on smooth rocky surfaces it was a little slippery in places. Luckily my boots gave me a good grip on these surfaces but some others going back down were having a slightly tougher time. We made it back down to the start in about 5 hours. I could definitely see fitter people and those who don't like to linger doing it a lot quicker. It was still quite early in the day, so we decided to head to the Wineglass Bay lookout. This was a fairly short walk and this trail was a lot easier so there were a lot more people on it. It didn't take us too long to reach the Wineglass Bay Lookout. There were quite a few steps in the last section, but not too hard. We went to the Coles Bay Lookout first, before continuing on to the Wineglass Bay Lookout. We also got some great views of Mount Amos, so it was nice to take some pictures of it and to think we had been at the top of it only a few hours previoulsy. I found the views of Wineglass Bay to be a little disappointing from the lookout. I think it is because we had climbed higher and had been rewarded with better views from above. The view was nice, and I am sure it would be sufficient if you didn't want to do the climb to the top of the mountain.However, we had been spoilt by going up the mountain first. There were also a few wallabies about trying to scavenge some food from the tourists and lots of people were trying to get selfies with them. That was funny to watch as they kept hopping off.

No one stopped to offer us a lift on the way back down, so we ended up doing the full walk back to the start of the national park. Back in town, we headed to the supermarket to get some things for dinner, breakfast and to make some lunch for hiking the next day. The next day would be a holiday, Australia Day, but the shop was still going to be open so we didn't bother buying too much stuff. We headed back to the hostel to cook some dinner. I was quite surprised as there seemed to be more families staying in the hostel as opposed to backpackers, so different from the places I had stayed in South East Asia. After dinner, we just relaxed and since we had had a long day and decided to have an early night.

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2nd September 2018

Our little corner of the world
Ahhh I had missed the Tassie blogs you posted last year... the views from Mt Amos are pretty special! And you were right to question your Australian friend's definition of a 'small' snake :)
3rd September 2018

Beautiful Tasmania
Most of my blogs about Tasmania are still in note form, haven't got around to finishing them yet. Tasmania blew me away with its beauty. I am envious you get to live in such an amazing place.

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