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Eliza Plateau recovery, Tasmania. By Geoff Murray

December 15, 2021 2 Comments

Eliza Plateua, Tasmania. By Mont Ambassador Geoff Murray

The disastrous bushfires that engulfed significant tracts of Tasmania’s wild areas in 2019 caused several major track closures. Parks Tasmania and teams of track workers have been working to repair and reopen the tracks and this week the Mount Anne track was reopened.

I was granted permission to photograph this area well before it was opened to the public so these were the first images to come out of the Gordon/Scotts Peak area after the fire. The next photo shows the Mount Eliza/Mount Anne track running up a totally burnt ridgeline. The severity of the destruction was very confronting. It has recovered remarkably well considering it's only 3 years ago but the most worrying part was that further into the south west, there were even cases of the fire getting into dense rainforest.

All of the boardwalks were burnt, as well as the vertical boards on every step. More than 4,000 steps have been replaced and a huge amount of work has been done on the track between the car park and High Camp Hut emergency shelter. Despite still being a gruelling climb of some 950 metres in only 4 km it is much easier than before.

I last camped in this area only a few months before the fires and it was good to be able to return.

The forecast was for a hot day. So I got an early start to try to beat the heat on the climb.

Eliza Plateau, Tasmania. By Geoff Murray

Signing in to the logbook it was worth noting the entry that mentioned a 2 metre Tiger snake that had taken up residence in the hut. I suspect it won’t get much use now…

Eliza Plateau, Tasmania. By Geoff Murray

The climb to the hut was soon over with clear skies and little wind. I was amazed to see that the scrub had been burnt all the way up to and past the hut at 1050 metres.

The final stretch to the top of Mount Eliza has not had any track work and is a little difficult in places, particularly as I was still protecting a shoulder that had surgery a few months ago.

I reached the top eventually and walked across the Eliza Plateau to a suitable campsite.

Eliza Plateau, Tasmania. By Geoff Murray

Conditions were not outstanding photographically. It’s not always possible to come home with excellent images but it is still good to get out into the wild places.

A period of showers in the afternoon was a good excuse for a nap then once the skies cleared a little I went for a wander around the area.

Still, no images of note so it was back to the tent for some dinner.

Fortunately, there was a pleasant light show just before sunset and I managed to capture a couple of reasonable images.

As the forecast had changed with a fair bit of rain for the third day of the trip, I decided to cut it short and head back out the next day. The temperature dropped to a very pleasant 4.7 degrees overnight and the morning was clear and calm with a bit of mist drifting past the mountaintops.

After a leisurely breakfast, I packed my gear and started walking back to the car.

Geoff Murray
Mont Ambassador

Gear used: Mont Mojo Shorts, Power Dry Thermals, Slinx Power Stretch Pro Top, Grid Pro Hoodie, Helium 450 Sleeping Bag, Moondance 1FN Tent, Backcountry 80L pack.

Eliza Plateau, Tasmania. By Geoff Murray


2 Responses

Paul jager
Paul jager

December 16, 2021

Great article, am going up there next week. Call it an early Christmas present. Just yesterday purchased a new Mont silk liner for the trip.

In terms of recovery it is probably a lot like Lake Rhona which I did last year. Yes you can see the impact the fire had, but good to new growth.

robert clark
robert clark

December 16, 2021

As a long time visitor to Mt Anne, I was intrigued by this story( I imagine the resident rat in the hut has become the snake’s dinner!) Does anyone know the condition of the area in the Anne crossover walk below Lighning Ridge? Camping there was an absolute treat with its Japanese garden feel. . Also, what of the wonderful Pandani Shelf? Does it still exist?
Sadly,
Robert Clark
Red Hill Vic

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