With inter­na­tion­al bor­ders closed (for Aus­tralians, any­way) until god-only-knows-when, and a nice local trip look­ing very attrac­tive as an intro­duc­tion to tour­ing for my part­ner Danielle, we’ve been plan­ning a Tas­man­ian East Coast cycling trip for a few months now.

We’re hop­ing to take the trip next year. Danielle is a native Tas­man­ian, so we’ll fin­ish the tour by stay­ing with/near her par­ents in Sandy Bay, a sub­urb of Hobart. The Spir­it of Tas­ma­nia fer­ry berths in Devon­port, so with our start and fin­ish points decid­ed, it was sim­ply a mat­ter of work­ing out the route. I found a good PDF guide on the Dis­cov­er Tas­ma­nia web­site, but the link has since dis­ap­peared into 404 heav­en. Using the out­line detailed in this guide, along with a Hema map of Tassie, we’ve out­lined a nice 15-leg route that will take us 13–14 days in total rid­ing, across per­haps three weeks (giv­en rests and sightseeing).

Divider illustration

Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra col­ors. And the peo­ple there see you dif­fer­ent­ly, too. Com­ing back to where you start­ed is not the same as nev­er leaving.

Ter­ry Pratchett

A Hat Full Of Sky

A broad outline of the trip

  • Devonport

    Catch­ing the Spir­it of Tas­ma­nia from Port Mel­bourne to Devon­port, arriv­ing in the evening.

  • Sheffield

    Rid­ing to Sheffield (27km) in the evening that we arrive, stay­ing at a B&B.

  • Cradle Mountain

    A big long climb to Cra­dle Moun­tain, where we’ll stay over for a day or so to both rest and visit/fish at Dove Lake and oth­er near­by attractions.

  • Deloraine

    Our longest leg, from Cra­dle Moun­tain we’ll dou­ble back towards Sheffield, then turn down to Mole Creek and through to Delo­raine. We’re hop­ing to ride it in one day as we’ll be nice and rest­ed, but oth­er­wise we’ll tack­le it in two and camp along the way.

  • Launceston

    Avoid­ing the A1, we’ll ride through Brack­nell, Long­ford and Perth to Launce­s­ton, where we’ll check in to accom­mo­da­tion to clean up, charge bat­ter­ies, check gear, etc.

  • George Town and Bridport

    My part­ner is from Hobart, and amus­ing­ly isn’t over­ly fond of what she calls The North, but I’m hop­ing a few days leisure­ly ride in the area will over­come a life­time of South­ern­er bias and help change her tune. I’m look­ing for­ward to rid­ing along the Tamar Riv­er and check­ing out the var­i­ous winer­ies in the area.

  • St Helens

    Rid­ing from Brid­port through Scotts­dale, Der­by, and on to St Helens, we’ll be weav­ing through the for­est reserves in North East Tas­ma­nia, which I’ve nev­er vis­it­ed but heard a lot about.

  • Swansea

    Now hug­ging the coast through Bicheno, we’ll detour to the pic­turesque Coles and Wine­glass Bays, then dou­ble back to Swansea.

  • Maria Island

    Danielle adores wom­bats. We could­n’t do the trip with­out a detour to Maria Island. We’ll stop near Triabunna/Orford and catch the fer­ry across for a day trip.

  • Dunalley and Richmond

    Skip­ping Port Arthur — we’ve been plen­ty of times before — we’ll mean­der around via Dunal­ley and Dodges Fer­ry to Rich­mond. If we feel like it we’ll stop for the night in Rich­mond, oth­er­wise we’ll press on the last 30-odd kilo­me­tres to…

  • Hobart

    Fin­ish­ing in Hobart, we’re plan­ning to arrive via the B35 and Glenorchy rather than tack­le the traf­fic on the Tas­man Bridge, then stay with the folks at Sandy Bay.

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Pho­to of Cloudy Bay head­land by Stephen Mabbs on Unsplash. Pho­to of cyclist on switch­back by Beardy McBeard (I think), used by Dar­ryl from Lov­ing The Bike, repro­duced here with­out permission.

Category: Camping, Cycling
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