Changes from the 5th edition, design changes are minimal, all
notes and maps are updated, main new addition are
notes for the sidetrip to Daverns Cavern at Frenchmans
Cap. Overall the guide describes almost 200 days of
Walks described are South
Track, South West Cape, Port Davey
Track, Huon & McKays Tracks, Southern
Ranges (in earlier editions named as Precipitious Bluff),
Picton Range, Federation Peak
Arthurs and Farmhouse Creek), Western
Range, Mt Anne and Frenchmans
Cap. Included as brief planning notes are the West Coast (Strahan
to Port Davey), the Frankland Range, the Denison, Spires and
King William Ranges and also a section of Other Routes which
includes Mt Hopetoun, Old River to Federation Peak, White Monolith
Range, Vanishing Falls, Mt Norold and the Prince of Wales Range. Here
is the Contents Page
If you are intending to walk here then I recommend you read the literature provided by National Parks. Travel has changed and Tassielink no longer run scheduled buses - the only way to get to Scotts Peak is either a charter or hire a small car and leave it at Scotts Peak (surprisingly often cheaper than a bus or taxi charter)
For first time visitors to the region, be careful how you use the suggested walking times. The times given are the normal range for fit experienced walkers who are used to the conditions (experience elsewhere often means little in Tasmania as you will find out). The times are only walking times and most groups should add an extra 1 to 2 hours to each section to account for rest and photographic stops. Walkers not used to tasmanian mud and scrambling with packs often find they take much longer than the suggested times and this is normal. Some writers have stated the times in the guide are fanciful but they are not, as I have beaten every time in the book, but also have taken longer myself at the start of a trip when I am less fit and am loaded with 14 days food. Once you have done 1 or 2 days, you will know how your times compare to the given times and will be able to adjust your estimates accordingly.
As an example, for Lake Oberon to High Moor, I have reports for times ranging from 4 to 11 hours. Would it be useful to put 4 to 11 hours in the guide!, not very helpful and I am sure most would assume they could do it in 4 or 5 hours. The majority of walkers experienced with tasmanian off-traack conditions take about 5 to 7 hours (plus an hour for lunch and stops makes it 6 to 8 hours) so that is the range given. Of course the alternative is to do what many guide books do, give no times. As Lake Oberon to High Moor is only 4.3km, some would assume they could walk that in an hour or two!!! I hope readers understand why I have given the average range taken by fit experienced walkers. Its impossible to estimate how long a group inexperienced with south-west conditions take, all I can say is that some groups do take a LOT longer than they should. We have met groups standing at an obstacle spending time pondering which way to go such as at a creek crossing, big mud hole or a steep gully. We make a quick decision and pass them, most of time we get through OK, its rare to need to backtrack. We then find the group we passed arrives 3 hours after we get to camp. They tell us the times are unrealistic but the reality is they spent a lot of time doing not a lot, the times we give are walking times ONLY, not stops for rests, decision making, helping others over obstacles etc.
NOTE - we have found that National Park Staff have put up some signs warning walkers that some groups take much longer than the times in the guide book. If you read the note above and the note on Page 41 in the guide you will realise that I have known that for many years. It is not something that is new. What has changed in recent years is that there has been a lot less work done on south-west tracks, it seems that most of the recent track work went to the Three Capes Track. The result is that most tracks in the south-west have recently recieved less work so expect tracks to be overgrowing with more mud etc. In other words conditions are currently poorer than they were 4 years ago when the current edition went to print. So many groups will currently take longer than the suggested times.
Some have asked for an online version - see my online policy page about why we have not done this yet. Here is also an explanation of what our maps include and how we intend they be used.
In writing a guide book, there is a limit as to what can be
included and some useful and interesting information was left out in
As a free service I will be providing some of the extra information
that does not fit into the guide in these home pages. Weather
details, height bar charts and a history of exploration which were once
on this site have been
placed into the current edition. If you have suggestions as to what
you would like included
then drop me an email and if feasible I will add them into the pages