Tyndall Range and Mt Sedgewick - February 2017
Annual Adventure Weekend 2017
Each year a few of us head out on an annual weekend of adventure. This year the location was to be Western Tasmania's Tyndall Range. None of us had ever been to the range but we'd read about it and were super excited. We were hoping to climb 3 peaks while there (all Abels) as well as take in 'The Labyrinth of the West Coast'.
A few of us had arrive the day prior to climb Mt Murchison, a spectacular peak near Rosebery. We took the short drive from Rosebery to the trailhead where we met up with our comrades who were arriving from Launceston. Tom would be arriving later that evening and walking in Solo.
We arrived in overcast conditions and after a brief catch up and gear redistribute we were on the steep trail heading towards the range. The steep climb took a couple of hours and once on the Tyndall Plateau we were enshrouded with mist. We gradually made our way through the mist before arriving at Lake Tyndall which gradually started to reveal itself. After about an hour of wandering around the lake we finally found a suitable campsite on the western shore. The weather closed in again and the afternoon was spent under our group shelter (as well as setting it up) in the rain. We had UHF radios so now we would sit and wait to hear of the arrival of Tom at the start of the track.
At 8pm the radio buzzed to life. Tom was on his way! It was still overcast so the light wasn't great but he had a good torch (my running headlight) and us on the radio to guide him in. Again we would wait...
Within an hour and a half we were on our way out in the dark to help guide Tom in. We could see his headlight in the distance and I've got to say that it was pretty exciting. A few of us headed off to walk him in. A few minutes later we met Tom on the Plateau and made our way back to camp. He'd put in a solid effort to make it in such a short time. After a brief catch up we all headed to bed as tomorrow would be a big day....
Day stats: 3hrs 38mins, 4.54km
We arose on day 2 to a stunning day. Not a cloud in the sky. The plan for today was to head to the distant peak of Mt. Sedgewick. With no track to speak of this would be a day that most of us relished. After a quick breakfast, all of us bar one, were off early as the we were already starting to feel the heat. Gordo was staying at basecamp to relax in the fine weather. We'd keep in touch with him via UHF.
We followed the plateau to its eastern edge then dropped off into the scrub below and it wasn't long before we were at a nice tarn on the ridge below. After a quick break we had some pretty heavy scrub before finding ourselves on a magnificent ridge winding itself towards our destination. We were making good time and absolutely lapping up the 360 degree views and panoramas. I can honestly say it's one of the best days hiking I've had in Tassie and the remote location made it even better.
After about two and a half hours while we enjoyed the view from a rocky outcrop, Greg had decided he'd retire back to camp. We figured we were only about half way to the peak so he was going to slowly return at his leisure. So, after a quick farewell we descended the outcrop into more scrub while Greg watched from above. The next, short section, was the scrubbiest. As we had our way towards a creek it got thicker and thicker and was not enjoyable but it wasn't long before we were through it and back on a ridge top on the home stretch towards the base of Mt. Sedgewick. We arrived at the base of the peak a short time later and enjoyed some lunch before making the final ascent. We shot up the peak (again quite scrubby at the base, but not too bad) and found ourselves on top about 5.5hrs after leaving camp. The views were awesome and we spent a little while on top before turning around turn commence what we thought would be a long return journey.
On the way back the weather continued to remain beautiful and we didn't really need to stop the entire way. We roughly retraced our route and negotiated the same scrub. It wasn't too long before we were back on the Tyndall Plateau and Crawf even trail ran the plateau into camp. We arrived back at a new, improved base camp (thanks Gordo) absolutely buggered but completely satisfied after conquering Mt. Sedgewick. What an awesome day! We were also pleased to see that Greg had also made it back to camp safely. All was good with the world. Gordo had dinner on the stove and we were soon tucking into that. It was an early night though with most people retiring early.
Day stats: 18km, 9hrs including breaks
The final day would see us fit in two Abels! We were up early to a misty day and headed straight off towards the southern flanks of the plateau to climb Mt. Geike. The walk across the plateau was misty but beautiful and after about an hour and a half we arrived at the summit of our first Abel of the day. We spent a while on top before heading back to camp. The trip back to camp was fast and after a quick pack up we were again on our way. This time to Mt Tyndall before heading home.
We made our way back to the upper reaches of the plateau and made a brief stop to dump packs before heading towards the upper peaks. After a bit of a ramble around we were on top of Mt. Tyndall looking over the spectacular cliffs to the valley below. We headed back to the packs, had a bite to eat and after another hours walking were back at the cars and on our way home. What a great weekend! The Tyndalls are a truly magic spot and I know I'll be back there.
Day stats - Geike trip: 7.89km, 2hrs 38mins Tyndall then to car: 6.69km, 3hrs