Leaving Tasmania


Three weeks is not nearly enough to see this beautiful island, but here we are, boarding the ferry.

We spent our last days at Mt. Field National Park, which boasts a fine campsite (v. cheap) with hot showers! We went on bush walks and explored the Styx River with its massive Swamp Gums, some of them 400 years old.

R looking up at s 400 year old Swamp Gum
The top of the Swamp Gum
Getting on the boat

On on the third day we woke to the smell of smoke–Tassie is experiencing an especially bad fire season.  And R had a fever.

We packed up and drove three hours north, hoping to camp at Bakers Beach.  As we got closer, the smoke grew thicker. Then we saw a helicopter with a bucket of water dangling beneath. That’s when we turned around.  I cursed myself for not checking where the fires were earlier.

We drove through the smoke to Devonport.

On the way, R threw up in the car. We pulled over and cleaned it up as best we could with wet wipes, but she kept saying, as we drove, ‘I can smell vomit.’

In Devonport the smoke was too bad to camp and every motel, hotel and cabin was fully booked.  At six pm, we booked a motel (our first) in Burnie and drove the extra 40 minnutes there.  Lee and I took turns eating in a restaurant. It was bliss to sit there on my own with food someone else had cooked.

R is better now; we’ve cleaned the car and we’re getting on to the Spirit of Tasmania. On the other side, we’ll visit a friend on the Mornington Peninsular before heading west round this big country.




Author: sarahklenbort

I'm a Brisbane-based writer and mother of two children--one deaf and one hearing. I'm also a sessional academic at the University of Queensland, where I teach literature and creative writing. In 2016, my husband and I took the kids out of school and travelled around Australia with a camper trailer, visiting deaf schools along the way. When we found Toowong State School, it was so good, we decided to move to Queensland! We still have the trailer and take off for the bush whenever we can.

2 thoughts on “Leaving Tasmania”

  1. Hugs to all on Valentine’s Day. Enjoy the Mornington Peninsula [smokefree?] where I once had a splendid swim at a shallow coast after walking halfway towards Tasmania. And feel better, R!


  2. Some parts of the journey will be memorable for the things that go wrong! As long as it comes right in the end. Glad to know you are all safe and R. is better.


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