Paige has gone over the culinary portion of our Bruny Island trip and in part two of Bruny Island I will describe the adventure part of our trip. I want to start off by saying Australians do not joke around when it comes to the outdoors. We thought we understood that but it was really until we went out to the secluded Bruny Island that we experienced this.
Once we got off the ferry we drove on a paved rode for a while then eventually had to turn off onto a gravel/dirt rode where having the Land Cruiser was definitely an advantage. I loved the driving part, there is something so manly about driving this offroad machine with the noise of the engine and the rocks hitting the wheel wells. I would look over to Paige and smile as both the car and us rattled away. We navigated these lonely dirt roads with ease on our new iconic Australian “bus” and Paige did pretty well on her first stick shift driving lesson (left handed/left side of the road and all).
The bush is named the bush in Australia for a reason. In the states we go on “hikes” while here in Australia we go on bush walks. Paige wanted to go on a epic hike so on our second day on Bruny we found the Slide Track (trail) that is supposed to be one of the most difficult ones on the Island and supposed to take 3 hours each way. We get to the trail head and it was closed due to bush fires.
It was wet that day so we disregard the sign, park, and make our way up the Slide Track. At first it is a nice climb up a rocky single track lined with gum trees and fern. Eventually it evens out and gets very rain forrest like. We are both in awe of this beauty and are excited that even though we had only been hiking for an hour we feel like we are way out there (which I think we were). The trail eventually gets thicker and harder to navigate through as if no one has been through in a long time. We had to cross some deep marshes and we were not very prepared; neither of us brought our big boots or tough bush walking pants. After we get through a few murky marshes I feel an itch on my leg. I pull out my pants leg and I happen to find about 5 small leaches on my leg. EWWWWW, I freak out a bit and swipe them off. At the same time Paige is watching me do this and realizes she might have some too and started to hyperventilate. “Get them off, get them off”, Paige screams. I manage to get them all off of us but the marshes continue and we have to stop every so often to brush them off. We both put our pants in our socks to prevent them from getting in but they are persistent and are pretty hard to get off. After a few more marshes and thick bush we decide we have had enough and cut the trip short and turn back. Mind you, we had to pass those same leach invested waters we started with. Once we get back we both thought to ourselves, whoa, now that is “bush walking”.
The second night we camped out in Jetty beach camp site. It was very nice and had some amazing beaches. Paige and I explored the area a bit and did a short bush walk in the evening and found one beach that was incredible, we both had a swim. That night after our amazing lamb dinner over the fire we hear some rustling and Paige screams “what is that?”. It was our neighbor the possum. He was pretty fat, deaf, and apparently very dumb. He would just come straight to you with no fear. Paige was scared of it but I told her that it would not do anything.
The next morning we decided to do a long bike ride around the bottom peninsula of Bruny Island which was about 16 km. We did the first part the night before and thought it would be awesome on the bikes. Everything up until the turn off we know and was cruisey. It was great and felt good to be on the bike with the views and the sun out. Once we turned off to do the bigger loop it started to become quite the epic adventure. There were long descents with deep bush and very steep. Paige had to walk some of them and had a couple spills trying to ride them. The views were incredible though and we really felt like we were in another world. During the ride we encountered a snake (no pic sorry it was big and nasty looking), an echidna, and many many sand flies that bite like little bastards.
All in all, this trip was a true adventure with all aspects of it, the drive, the bush walking, the wildlife, the food, and the biking. It was a great way to start our journey to tackel every National Park in Tasmania. One down and eighteen to go.