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This is as close to Heaven on Earth for me...

Cradle Mountain, the start of the 65-kilometre (40-mile) Overland Track, is the northern end of the 161,000-hectare (397,840-acre) Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park, part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. Tasmania's highest mountain, 1,617-metre (5,305-foot) Mt Ossa, is in this park, just off the Overland Track, while another beautiful national park, the Walls of Jerusalem, abuts its eastern boundary.
The sheer magnificence of Cradle Mountain inspired Austrian-born Gustav Weindorfer to build a chalet of King Billy pine here in 1912 and work tirelessly for a decade to have the area declared a national park "for the people for all time". His dream was realised in 1922, and today a quarter of all visitors to the state travel here to share his vision.

We spent the good part of the morning doing the simple 6km Dove Lake Circuit track, one of Tasmania’s premier walks. The track took us around Dove Lake and beneath the towering spires of Cradle Mountain. The track is boardwalked for much of the way and would take about 2 hours to complete.

Our track was insanely delightful. Starting out with crazy gusts of winds, drizzles of rain during the walk, falling flakes of snow from the summit of the mountain and warm sunshine toward the end.

Standing, looking up to the magnificence of Cradle Mountain


Ballroom Forest

Towards the southern end of Lake Dove you will enter a magnificent cool temperate rainforest known as the Ballroom Forest. Ancient myrtle-beech trees festooned in moss tower majestically from a moss strewn forest floor. The effect is stunning, and reminiscent of an ancient cathedral.
Myrtle-beeches are a dominant species in Tasmania's cool temperate rainforests. These fire-sensitive plant communities once grew extensively thoughout not only Australia, but also the southern continents of South America and Antarctica. It was part of the distinctive suite of plants that evolved on the supercontinent of Gondwana. Today the species finds its stronghold in Tasmania, but also occurs in Victoria, while its closest relatives are confined to New Zealand and South America - both once part of Gondwana.


The mountain is one of the favourite features in the park and is surrounded by stands of native deciduous beech (wonderfully colourful in autumn), rainforest, alpine heathlands and buttongrass. Icy streams cascade down the mountainsides, and ancient pines are reflected in the still glacial lakes and a wealth of wildlife ensure there is always something to captivate you.



The often-photographed boatshed that stands on the northwestern shores of Lake Dove was built in 1940 by the first Ranger at Cradle Mountain, Lionell Connell. The shed was built largely of King Billy pine. Although some restoration work was completed in 1983, the shed remains substantially unaltered from its original form
Although the boatshed is now vacant, boating was popular on the lake up until the 1960s. Indeed, during the 1920s Gustav Weindorfer used a very basic and somewhat perilous raft comprised of two pine logs connected by a pailing deck. He later used a more substantial punt to ferry passengers around the lake. In 1938, the Cradle Mountain Reserve Board purchased three Huon pine boats, which reamined in service until the 1960s. It was for these that the Lake Dove and the similar but smaller boatshed at Crater Lake were built.

Road leading to Ronny Creek

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