East bound taking in Queenstown, Derwent Bridge and Mount Field National Park

Up early we leave Strahan to allow time to checkout a few of the tourist hot spots along the way to Mount Fields National Park. We have had a mix of weather on the west coast and have used more winter gear than we do in a whole winter in Queensland so we were looking forward to the 30 degrees that Tasmania promised us today.

Nestled in a valley between Mount Lyell and Mount Owen, Queenstown is the largest town on the West Coast. Surrounded by dramatic hills that provide stark evidence of a history that once made it one of the richest mining towns in the world.

Today, Queenstown is experiencing a rebirth with a growing tourism and arts culture. But it will never rid its past for its unique landscape was formed by Copper smelting and excavating stripped the hills around the city bare and has stained them with unnatural colours. The hills have had a hard time regenerating so much that the moonscape is still there all these years later for you to enjoy. It’s a beautiful but rather haunting reminder of man’s greed and his responsibility to Mother Earth.

East of Queenstown we have the 99 bend challenge…. The staging ground for one of Targa Tasmania’s toughest sprints, the 99 Bends may not actually have quite as many twists and turns as its moniker suggests, but it is still an incredibly challenging drive that any hillclimber will love.

However Karen reminded Rob “we are not in a Porsche, but a distant European cousin called “Le Frog Box”, watch them sharp bends boy”. You can thank nature for shaping the winding roads that cover the island state – and the stunning, movie-set views you see from them. Believe it or not, the speed limit through the 99 Bends is 100km/h.

We wouldn’t suggest you try hitting it given the big drops off to the side – the elevation change in these 4km of

driving is around 200 metres. Surely someone is taking the p …. out of us, with those speed signs.

Our next stop has become quite a phenomenon in Tasmania. Wherever we went people remarked “have you seen the wall” … well no we haven’t and it hadn’t really come up on our research radar. Mmmm …. what is this wall about. Only the night before had we been told “Oh you must book, they don’t allow walk ups”. So onto the internet and sure enough “Bookings are now essential. To avoid disappointment book online before midnight the day before”. We booked and pay for our tickets $20 each, our only problem was we could only get a 1pm booking, once booked we received our booking confirmation, including very strict details on conditions of entry no photographs, no video and if we missed our time slot by 15 minutes we would forfeit our tickets. Oh dear best be there on time, which unfortunately meant we would be missing a particular walk that was on the way to Derwent Bridge, as we couldn’t risk being late. 

Derwent Bridge is at the southern end of the Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park and surrounded by wilderness country. There are a number of accommodation options for walkers and those wanting to play in the winter snow. On arrival at “The Wall in the Wilderness” down the very long driveway we came across an extremely long building in the middle of nowhere. The building itself is impressive so it set our expectations high.

We think this hawk is the most photographed piece of artwork at the wall.

The Wall itself was created amidst adversity. The artist Duncan and his wife sold all they had, purchased the land and, as he says, “went for it”. It was a huge gamble. Was it too far out in the middle of nowhere? Would people travel? Construction issues also plagued the first years with Duncan building a lot of the shed himself in harsh winter conditions. The gamble has definitely paid off with more than 75,000 people visiting The Wall each year, 

The artist’s statement reads “On the 1st March 2005 in one of the most beautiful parts of Tasmania I set out to undertake sculpting a wall that would be 3 metres high and over 100 metres in length. The material would be Huon Pine. Through an often arduous at times but also immensely satisfying journey and over a decade and half later I welcome you to visit what is simply known as The Wall”. – Sculptor Greg Duncan

This fascinating piece of instillation artwork was created from the determination and ambition of the artist, to pay homage to the history of the Central Highlands of Tasmania and the grit and resoluteness of the people who make up its history.

The wall, features beautifully scented and rare Huon Pine, represents an ongoing project in which the artist has sculpted the story of the area. He depicts the history right from the beginning when the indigenous population lived in the area, to the pioneers who began harvesting timber from the ancient forests. Following the pioneering era, there are images of the pastoralists, miners and hydro-electric scheme workers, shown along with the many animals found in the area and the horses who worked alongside pioneers. Throughout the work you can read the political statement the artist is making about the environment and mankind’s effect on earth.

Though you are not permitted to take photographs the internet is full of them and following are a series of photos available.

Artist at work.

After doubling back to the local servo to fill the tank of very expensive diesel we devoured the best chunky steak and mushroom ”hot” pies from the Hungry Wombat Cafe, in the front cab of froggy with the heater on …. Where is that promised 30 degrees …. It’s currently 17.

As the winding road ascends through Mount Field National Park the stunning natural flora transforms, offering a constantly changing view as you climb to higher altitudes. Known as ‘the park for all seasons’, Mount Field is Tasmania’s first National Park and part the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Site and home to some of the world’s tallest eucalypt forests, as well as a unique array of alpine vegetation.

There’s a wide variety of wildlife in the park, including many of Tasmania’s native mammals and endangered species, such as the eastern quoll and the eastern barred bandicoot. Eleven of Tasmania’s twelve endemic birds can be seen here, too. Spectacular glaciated landscapes compete for attention with cascading waterfalls, including the breathtaking, three-tiered Russell Falls arguably Tasmanian’s say one of the most impressive waterfalls in Tasmania. 

We pull in late to the campground to find it absolutely full. It’s a Sunday what’s going on we haven’t seen this many people forever it seems. Karen goes over to the ranges hut to see if there is availability at another ground, Oh it’s a public holiday weekend, well that tells a story.

Ok back to our trusted APP WikiCamps. Just down the way is “Left of Fields Campground” their marketing spiel reads “So much more than just a campsite but a destination itself, boasting beautiful gardens, a unique 18 hole golf course, regular live music and generous space”. Yep it’s quirky to say the least. The sites are big, you are encouraged to have a campfire, it is a must to have a game of golf and to soak in the fireside bathtub. Oh and don’t forget to feed the chickens and if you find any eggs they are yours.

Fireside bath tub
Fire pits are supplied for you to use at Left of Field Campground
The chooks are very friendly at Left of Field Campground
Free eggs 👍

It Valentines Day, and not that we need to remind ourselves of the special relationship we have but it is rather fitting that we are going to visit what Tasmanian’s call their most romantic waterfall. Now it is going to have to be good to out do Lovers Falls and our very own private waterfall at Trial Harbour

Beginning our Mount Field visit with a leisurely hand in hand walk through the towering tree ferns and giant eucalypts on the short walk to Russell Falls sounds just the thing lovers should do.

Gentle Giants stand as sentries

Russell Falls is the star attraction and even featured on Australia’s first stamp. It deserves allthe attention it is simply breath taking. It is very popular so having the falls to yourself is difficult. However if you wait for all the lovelies to get their instagram pose just right you to can try one with your selfie stick.

Russell Falls cascades over three drops
Abundance of wildlife
These Fairy Wrens are a joy to watch as they flit about

The falls are only a short, wheelchair accessible journey from the visitor centre, through enormous fern forests and some of the world’s tallest trees. The wildlife is abundant with the potaroos enjoying the fresh shoots and seeds by the pathway.

Easy pathway to Russell Falls

But …. If you have had your weetbix this morning start the climb of numerous flights of stairs to take in the breathtaking view over Russell Falls to the valley below.

Ok there are steps to climb, lots of them.

Now that we have your breath back, If you continue the climb you will be rewarded with Horseshoe Falls and then beyond to Lady Baron Falls.

The top of Russell Falls
The view from the top is worth the climb
Horseshoe Falls are just up stream
Horseshoe Falls may not be tall but they are delightful
Baron Falls cascading

With stunning vistas, great walks, abundant wildlife and excellent visitor facilities we understand why with an easy drive from Hobart, Mount Field has been popular with nature lovers for well over a century. If you are here during the winter season, Mt Field National Park becomes a whole new playground offering downhill skiing and snowboarding, with tows operating and good cross-country skiing across the higher plateau. We were happy to see the blanket of green not white.

Join us next time when we camp in the most southern campsite available in Australia oh and it’s free. 

🌟TIP🌟 It pays to have your Tasmanian National Parks Pass. Apply online prior to travel save $$$$

Following are some more photos of our time at Mount Field National Park.

The national parks have included information
boards on fauna and flora along the walkways
We kept a watchful eye for platypus but unfortunately we didn’t spot any

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If you are interested in the products we used on our build on our product page is a list. Many of these items we sourced secondhand, others we purchased from the manufacturer or retailer. We have found them online or the retailer and listed them for you. Some of the links supplied we have an association with and we will receive a small commission if you purchase through the link, but it is free to look and do your research 😊 we can not promise all links to work as retailers may remove items, but we will do our best to update them 👍


Dip Falls is one of the most beautiful waterfalls we have seen.

We had a leisurely breakfast of scrambled eggs and watched the waves wash along the rocks at Sulphur Creek. It is hard to tear yourself away from beautiful places like this. We had the most restful sleep listening to those waves dance along the shoreline last night. Except maybe for the noise of those beautiful little fairy penguins that call this place home. But really those penguins are a delight to see and they soon settled down to sleep as well, oh until dawn breaks 😂.

What a place to wake up to Sulphur Creek
free campsite gets a 10/10 from us

Our journey today isn’t that far, it is only 91 kilometres but of course we are sailors, we can’t possible go in a straight line. No we are going on a meandering course that will take us all the day. However we do need to find our next campsite at Peggs Beach but that won’t be a worry as the sun is currently setting at 9pm so plenty of time. we do like this Daylight saving in summer. This next campsite is part of Tasmania’s National Parks. You will need to have a pass for your car and a permit to camp. We talked about the cost of National Parks Passes in our previous blog on Cradle Mountain. If you are going to visit a lot of parks in Tasmania it is worthwhile getting the holiday pass or the annual pass.

Peggs Beach a beautiful campsite.

From Sulphur Creek we make our way firstly to Burnie. Burnie is a port city with an industrial past that has reinvented itself as a vibrant and creative city on a beautiful stretch of Tasmania’s north-west coast. Nestled around Emu Bay on Bass Strait, Burnie has been an industrial centre for most of its existence. Since the closure of its paper pulp mill, the city has taken a creative approach to promoting itself and the many artisans who call it home.

A great regional town to catchup on provisioning or that spot of retail therapy

It has a lovely beachside feel and downtown you will find a vibrant mix of shops and eateries which you find in most small towns. So if you are needing a Bunnings, Kmart, Target, Coles, Woolworths etc. this is certainly a great place to find all of these and more.

The foreshore has been redeveloped and has a vibrant vibe.

There is also a free campsite down by the bay, at Cooee Recreational Reserve. You do need to book/register with the council to stay there. The Burnie City Council provides a short stay (max 2 nights) free camping for fully self-contained vehicles the reserve is about 2.5km west of the Burnie town centre.

Cooee Recreational Reserve has a dump point.

When we checked it out there were six camping there still with plenty of room for more. You do have to be self contained as there are definitely no facilities. We were happy to have a look and put it on our list, for if, we needed a regional town spot, this would certainly be useful. Info on how to register below 👇 There is also liquid waste discharge point and a water supply point provided within the vicinity. We also needed a top up on fresh water in our tanks. We stopped into the Coles Express filled our diesel tanks, then used their fresh water tap to fill the very depleted fresh water tanks. Last time we filled was Melbourne.

The industrial history of Burnie and the surrounding north-west region can be explored at the Burnie Regional Museum where you can wander a replica Federation street and see how ordinary people lived more than 100 years ago.

Take a walk through history

Burnie also produces award-winning cheese and at Hellyers Rd Distillery, Australia’s largest boutique whisky distillery, you can sample some of the world’s best whisky at the cellar door.

Hellyers Rd Distillery

Wynyard was our next stop. From the hustle and bustle of Burnie, Wynyard is totally relaxed. A seaside town located at the mouth of the Inglis River. It is a popular holiday spot for beach activities, ocean and river fishing, and lazy drives through out picturesque landscapes. When we passed over the river there were all sorts of watercraft coming and going. Everyone seemed to be in the water. We shivered at the thought, way to cold for us in the middle of summer.

But what Wynyard is really famous for is For flat-topped Table Cape and fields of stunning tulips. Why tiptoe when you can dance through the tulips …… well it’s not spring 🙄 so there was no disco in our step when we saw fields and fields of freshly dug dirt. Oh well something to put on the list for next time. Spring not Summer …. Is it summer we still have coats on 🙄 Queenslanders!

We headed back on the A2 because we had been told of a waterfall…. We know ….. by this stage you are saying, “we should just do a blog on all the waterfalls in Tasmania”. But this one promises to be something totally different to anything we had seen before. Not much detail other than that was given … “you just have to see it” was all we kept being told. So we turned off the A2 and followed the signs to Dip Falls. 

Wow oh Wow. “You just have to see it” …… 

Join us in our next blog when we discover Stanley…….. 

Ok just our little joke 😂 here are all our thoughts and details on Dip Falls. It’s probably easy to be overlooked and miss seeing these falls, as it really isn’t up there on the top 10 things listed to see or do, but it should be. Dip Falls are located between Stanley and Wynyard in Tasmania’s North West, 27 km or a 1/2 hour up a quiet and mostly sealed road that passes through pleasant countryside. 

They are one of the most beautiful falls in the state or should we say that we have ever seen. It’s a two-tiered structure that’s right “a structure” and the unique rock formations make it well, totally different to anything we have seen.

The carpark is amazing as well

From the parking area next to the falls in the Reserve, it’s a short walk to a platform with an unsurpassed view out over the top of the falls.

From the platform above the falls you get a spectacular view

Another path leads down some 220 steps to the base of the falls and its unique rock formations are right there for you to study. This walk to the base needs a fitness level, however if you can’t manage the stairs, still visit as the viewing platform at the top gives you a brilliant view, and it shouldn’t be missed.

Not until you see these falls can you understand the structure
The walkway takes you right out to the centre of the falls so you can enjoy the scene.
The rainforest around the falls is pristine
It’s magical to be surrounded by such beauty

Once you have caught your breath from the climb back up the 220 stairs you can take the extra 5 min drive to the “Big Tree” in the Big Tree Reserve. Now this is super special. Not only is visiting this giant tree unique but the rainforest walk which is very easy and short (10 minutes return) is one of the best walks we have done. But don’t let us be the judge for you checkout the following pics.

The walk is well marked and flat
Giant man ferns

To see such giants still in our forests after we know of so much logging history it is unbelievable. The circumference of the featured tree at its base is nearly 17 m and definitely worth a look if you’re here. But there is not just one, they are everywhere. 

This tree is massive
And there are more

Ok time to get a wriggle on as usual we are a bit behind our schedule. We start heading for our next campsite, but when we arrive at Peggs Beach it is blowing 35 knots straight into the campsite with no protection. Good sailors always have a plan B to bail to and we had marked a spot on the map at Forrest, a little inland that hopefully would give some protection. 

Forest is a small quiet rural community, located about 11 kilometres south of the town of Stanley. This would be a perfect overnighter as we plan to visit the historic town of Stanley the following day. 

On arrival in Forrest we firstly checked out the potential campsite. WikiCamps has it listed as a paid site of $5 per night (paid at the general store). Well if you are looking for a great campsite with clean amenities (toilets, water and camp kitchen) you can’t go past “BlackBerry Inn Forrest Sports Centre”. Here is a review of another camper.

We were totally protected from those wicked South West winds and had a very enjoyable night surrounded by like minded people. 

Now these hedges should keep us protected

Join us next time when we explore the historic township of Stanley and the Nut. Please find following further photos of today’s exploration. 

If you would like to ride along with us whether it be on the high seas or on a dusty road out west, consider being a patreon find out about it here 👉 Dreamtime Patreon every little bit helps to keep us on the road producing Youtube and writing blogs as we hope you enjoy them. 

Please subscribe to the blog so you will be notified each time we post. To subscribe head to our home page.

We love to read your comments if you have any questions pop them below, we will be sure to get back to you.

If you are interested in the products we used on our build on our product page is a list. Many of these items we sourced secondhand, others we purchased from the manufacturer or retailer. We have found them online and listed them for you. Some of the links supplied we have an association with and we will receive a small commission if you purchase through the link, but it is free to look and do your research 😊 we can not promise all links to work as retailers may remove items, but we will do our best to update them 👍

Burnie City Free Campsite registration information


Le frog Box is dwarfed by these giants

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