|Mount Maria from the track near Counsell Creek - 29th April 2011|
(The track turns left just beyond the bridge.)
Mount Maria is a good solid walk from Darlington. I previously climbed it as a sidetrip on my return from camping at Encampment Cove. The track runs up a ridge as a sidetrip off the Inland Track. Mount Maria is 709m tall, so this represents a significant climb for those not used to such ascents. The distance is 16km, so all up the walk requires more effort than Bishop and Clerk. A moderate level of fitness is recommended before attempting this walk. Note also that while much of the walk is on a well-made track with surprisingly few obstructions for Tasmania, the last section is across boulders and a little easy scrambling is required just before the summit.
Walk Description: Leaving Darlington, head south towards the Painted Cliffs. Cross Counsell Creek and take the left-hand turn ahead. This is clearly marked to Mount Maria. From here the track heads pretty much straight for the peak, gradually becoming steeper throughout its length. A little way up the hill there is a track intersection. Mount Maria is to the left and the right fork continues southwards as the "Inland Track". Pushbikes can be parked at this point if you have ridden them here. The track continues to climb, and is easy to follow. There is a good spot at the top of a small sandstone cliff for a morning tea break. Eventually the track emerges on to a sizable dolerite rock scree and the way is marked across and then up. This scree is not nicely laid out with a windy track like the one on Bishop and Clerk, but requires a bit of clambering. The trig point will become obvious above from here, and a bit of easy scrambling will see you on the summit enjoying views of The Isthmus, South Maria, the mainland and more. The return is basically a retrace, and most people will find the boulders take about as long to get down safely as they did to climb up laboriously. Overall, most parties will take the advertised 5 to 7 hours for this walk, and some will take longer.
|The Isthmus and South Maria from Mount Maria - 29th April 2011|