We had originally planned to hike the Overland Track, a five day hike from Cradle Mountain to Lake St. Claire, but the logistics of getting back to our car five days later didn't work out very nicely. Instead, we opted to hike to the summit of Cradle Mountain. At least now we can say we've hiked some of the Overland Track!
Chances are, if you find yourself in the western portion of Tasmania, you're probably already ready to hike some mountains. There's no other reason to come to the town of Derwent Bridge, a small town that can't be inhabited by more than 15 people.
Hiking Cradle Mountain is an effort. Bring water, some lunch, your camera, layers of clothes and maybe a few beers for the top.
The landscape was constantly changing and there were some distractions along the way (i.e. cabins to explore and trees to climb!). When we started the hike the weather was pretty dreary–it was cold, cloudy and rainy. By the time we reached the summit at mid-day the clouds had burned off completely and it was hot, clear and dry.
I was tearing layers off (and putting them back on) because the sky just didn't want to play nice, but we won that battle and came out on top (no pun intended).
The last quarter of the hike got pretty hairy, but that just adds to the fun, doesn't it? We were climbing up, over and across huge rocks, literally into the clouds. This was a fantastic hike and anybody who loves a bit of adventure would love Cradle Mountain.