With virus restrictions easing I decided it was time for a walk, after some deliberation and calculations to see what was within a 30km drive of home I decided to revisit Collins Bonnet in Wellington Park. This time I would head up via the Myrtle Forest Track out of Collinsvale, behind Hobart.
I had attempted this track once before whilst recovering from a chest infection and gave up, I was interested in finding out how close I had come.
I left the carpark just after 9am, walking on a wide vehicular track which descended slightly at first and then started to head uphill. Ten minutes walking see’s arrive at a picnic spot with a pit toilet, the walking track continues behind the small BBQ shelter.
Once you leave the shelter the gradient of the track heads uphill and feels quite steep in places near the river. Another 10 minutes further along the track you arrive at Myrtle Forest Falls, a small waterfall with a viewing deck.
Heading uphill along the track once more the terrain and rainforest can make things a bit slippery underfoot, the track winds its way up and crosses Myrtle Forest creek numerous times. Each crossing is a fairly simple rock hop across and a couple of them have rope strung across the creek to help you keep your balance.
After what felt like a long climb I was happy to see the forest change from rainforest to open eucalypt and then alpine heath as I approached the East-West Fire Trail. Just before you reach the Fire Trail you get your first proper views of Collins Bonnet and back across the Wellington Plateau. From the carpark to the fire trail took 1 and a half hours which I was fairly happy with.
Once you arrive at the fire trail follow the track in a southerly direction and head towards a small tin day use shelter. I stopped at the shelter and had a quick drink and something to eat. By this time the wind had picked up considerably and the temperature had dropped so I put my waterproof jacket on to block the wind. Walking on the fire trail is quick and simple and in no time at all you are at the junction to the Collins Bonnet ascent. The ascent is not technically difficult however it requires crossing some scree (Boulder Fields) and following a route marked by rock cairns and pole markers.
Once you come up on a small crest you will see the trig point marking the summit. Views can be had in all directions and on a clear day you can see into the southwest and Mt Field area. It was 11:30 when I arrived at the summit, 2.5 hours from the car with 700m of climbing. I was pretty happy with that.
The route retraces itself back to the car, be careful heading down though as the forest area can be very slippery.
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