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On Walkabout On: Mt. Wellington, Tasmania

Prior Posting: Hobart, Tasmania

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One of the most visited areas in all of Tasmania is the summit of Mt. Wellington that overlooks the island’s capitol city of Hobart:

The mountain was named Table Mountain by early explorers of Tasmania, but in 1832 it was named Mt. Wellington in honor of the Duke of Wellington who helped to defeat Napoleon at Waterloo.  The large, rounded summit of the mountain is usually snow capped most the year except during the summer months.  The mountain is thickly forested and criss-crossed by many hiking trailers.  There is an even a paved road that takes visitors to the summit of the mountain that is capped by a large tower:

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The road is 22 kilometers long and was built in the 1930’s as a make work scheme for the unemployed.  As the road nears the summit the igneous rock that forms the top of the mountain surrounds the road:

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For a mountain so large I found it amazing how relatively flat the top of the mountain was:

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These igneous rocks on the summit are most dramatic on the mountain’s southern side:

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Here is a closer look at these unusual rock formations:

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Besides the rocks that populate the summit of the mountain, there was also plenty of small plants was well:

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Here is a closer look at these plants that have to survive some extremely harsh weather to be able to survive on the top of this mountain:

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Even more surprising than the plants that some how survive up on the summit is the fact that we saw a lot of lizards living up there as well:

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At the top of the 4,170 foot (1,271 meters) summit of Mt. Wellington is the concrete and steel Broadcast Australia Tower that provides radio and TV signals across the greater Hobart area:

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The views from the top of this mountain are tremendous to say the least; with the most impressive view being of Tasmania’s capitol, Hobart:

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It is this same view of a much smaller Hobart that Charles Darwin saw in February 1836 when he climbed Mt Wellington during a visit on the HMAS Beagle. Darwin would have also saw the Tasman peninsula out in the distance which at the time wasn’t quite as notorious for being the site of the prison colony of Port Arthur:

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Here is the view further up the Derwent River that runs through Hobart and out into the ocean:

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Here is the view even further up river:

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Up river is where my wife and I planned on going as our next destination was to drive out to the World Heritage Area in Tasmania’s remote southwest.  This scenery would prove to be even more dramatic than anything we had seen yet on our journey around Tasmania.

Next Posting: Up the Derwent River to Southwest Tasmania

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