A couple friends and I decided to take the week off from work and head down to Tasmania to go tackle the South Coast Track. The South Coast Track lies within the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage area in the South West National Park and is Tasmania’s largest and most remote national park offering pristine and rugged wilderness landscapes.
The track itself is an 85km-hiking track that starts at Melaleuca airstrip, and follows the coastline over mountain ranges and through dense rainforests – finishing at the end of the most southerly road in Australia, in Cockle Creek.
We flew in on a small plane from Hobart to Melaleuca to start the hike and the weather that awaited us was far from ideal. The first two days brought us strong winds and relentless rainfall. This made our progress even more difficult, by flooding water crossings which slowed us down but didn’t dampen our spirits. After some small setbacks on Day 2, we managed to get back on track and crossed the Iron Bound Ranges and hiked through some of the densest rainforest I have ever seen. The hiking was hard going but rewarding and the weather improved significantly from Day 4. We were met with some beautiful sunsets and nice clear, sunny days as we tracked along towards the South East Cape (Tasmania’s most Southern Point). My favourite camp spot had to be Granite Beach, with its beautiful views of rugged coastline, and being perched above a cliff-top next to a waterfall just added to the experience.
- A high-quality rain jacket is absolutely critical
- waterproof pants are also critical
- waterproof gaiters
- a decent sturdy pair of boots
- an additional lightweight shelter/tarp too if you have room.
**I dehydrated all my own food to save on weight and make sure you have a tasty meal at the end of each day. You have to carry everything you need to survive for a week, so ensure you make a list and have everything, as there are no resupply points.
A good gear guide is included here.
How to get there
Fly into Hobart and book a flight with Par Avion to Melaleuca. You can also do it from Cockle Creek towards Melaleuca and fly out at the end – up to you. Most people do it from West to East though.
- Hiking/ bushwalking
- Camp cooking
Intermediate – This hike is not easy and does require a good deal of planning to ensure you are prepared and ready. A good level of fitness and hiking experience is required. The track is well marked and it’s hard to get lost out there, but you need to be well aware of the changing weather conditions and tidal times or you can find yourself stuck quite easily.
85km in total, over seven days. You can extend this and have some day trips or rest days. But I wouldn’t recommend doing it any quicker than 7 days, as there is a lot to see and lots of ground to cover.