Saturday, 8 March 2008

Hartz Peak - 8th March 2008

Mt Picton and Hartz Lake from the slopes of Hartz Peak - 8th March 2008Went with a couple of new chums and an old lag for a walk to Hartz Peak (Map). The old lag was well equipped for the conditions, and Mick (Miguel) has been in Tassie for a while, so the chill wasn't too much of a shock. He also has experience on high mountains in Bolivia. But Steve is fresh from geological surveys in the deep north of the country, and the cold was a little more invigorating for him. In fact, on top of the mountain the ladies picked him from his red cheeks (and accent).

Federation Peak wreathed in cloud from Hartz peak - 8th March 2008Good walk today with high cloud making for a textured sky and improving some of the photos. Views were quite good, with most mountains visible. There was cloud around the peaks to the south and west, which obscured some of the more distant ones, but gave the Eastern Arthurs and Southern Ranges a slightly different aspect for once. Good views northwards, with Frenchmans quite clear. Chilly breeze at times, but the winds were a lot calmer than early in the morning.

The crew were as follows:

Phil RushOld lag, Phil Rush, not even reciting poetry, but we did learn some interesting facts about some of his more colourful customers. He doesn't earn as much as Troy Cassar-Daly for an evening's entertainment - I just don't understand why. Phil got to the top of the hill first today. Phil spent most of his time (about 70 years as far as I can tell) as a teacher driving from one school to another, drinking tea, killing snakes and eating morning tea.
MickMick (Miguel) once called his wife from the top of a 5200m peak in Bolivia and told her he was waving to her! At work, Mick does all the difficult jobs but gets paid the least. Mick and his wife served as missionaries in Bolivia with SIM for about 13 years. He speaks fluent Spanish, is an accomplished joiner, and is keen to make his own musical instruments. He hasn't yet fixed our ukelele. (Joke, Mick).
SteveSteve thought it was quite cold - actually it was for much of the time, so that's OK. Steve has been attacked by a taipan twice, and a freshwater crocodile once. Steve COULD tell us what he's been doing for a living (somewhere oop norf), but then he'd have to kill us. Steve appeared to have a large sack of junk food with him today, but it kept him well fed. He works as a surveyor, and I suspect he could be as mathematically adept as Phil. They both seem to enjoy playing with the GPS anyway, but only Phil knew off pat how many hours there were in a year (8784, this year only!). Steve has been picking pears for Clark's at North Franklin, and apparently the pear is imperfectly shaped, such that it is difficult to pick. (Me: Dear God, you made the pear the wrong shape! God: For whom, you or the tree? Me: Oh....good point God.)

All in all, the scenery was well received. As far as I'm concerned, this peak has the highest view/effort ratio of any peak in Tasmania.

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