Woke up to heavy rain - so much for my long hike. Went to the cafe and had a cup of coffee and some breakfast, then another cup a coffee. Half way through the second cup the rain slacked off. Headed for the park. By the time I got to the trail head of the Wineglass Bay / Hazards Beach trail there were about twenty other cars in the car park with the same idea. Got on the trail as quickly as I could and after passing a few others had it pretty much to my self.
The view point looks down on the incredible clear blue water and brilliant white sand of Wineglass Bay. On a sunny day I'll bet that it is almost to dazzleing to look at! Even with the heavy skies it was still beautiful and bright. On the hike down the skies started to clear, and by the time I got to the bay propper I was wishing I'd brought a swimming suit. There were still clouds in the sky and a coolish breeze, but there was lots of blue peeking through. At the far end of the bay there's a campsite, I suspect it would be absolute paradise to come a camp there for a few days (or months...). Hiked across the narrow peninsula to Hazards Beach. By the time I got there the skies were mostly sunny, but the wind was firece and the whitecapped water was not at all inviting. Walked along the beach to the far end of the cove where the trail headed up in to the hills.
The trail was a bit of a slog, but the stunning coastal views kept me motivated. On this segment I passed a big group and a few smaller groups - they must have been people who braved the rain. On another segment of the trail I got quite a fright when I came around a corner and nearly triped on a wallaby. I think he was as shocked to see me - I'm pretty sure he hopped higher than I am! He stopped and we spent a minute regarding each other from a few meters apart, but when I reached for my camera I broke the spell and he bounced off.
By the time I got back to the car there were only a few fluffy white clouds left in the sky and it was starting to get hot. It was a fantastic four hour hike. It's the park's flagship hike and I think the rains did me a huge favor. I only had to deal with a few dozen people - I'd guess on a typical summer Saturday there would be hundreds there.
Drove up the road to the last of the parks beaches and settled in for a dip and some sunning. Unfortunately I was only there about a half hour before the wind shifted and I started to get sandblasted. Decided to head up to Launceston for the night. That way it's only a couple hours tomorrow. To get up to Devonport to catch the ferry tomorrow night. If I'm motivated I can go wine tasting or explore somemore of the coast.
Got into town, and found a great pub with backpackers acomadation - they even have free laundry facilities. Spend the evening doing laundry. While the wash is going I wander around and step out on the fire escape - the pub is in a rather industiral part of town, but the buildings are old and interesting. Then I notice across and down the road is a rowing club! I walk down to the club but there is no one about. Hopefully tomorrow morning I can motivate and go see if I can find someway to get on the water. Have diner, a few beers, and a glass of port before heading to bed. But then the bartender won't let me get away. He's this older guy (probably mid-70s), very friendly, and loves to talk. He gives me a few drinks on the house (a beer and a couple ports) and next thing I know it's nearly midnight...