Tasmanian Trail


The Tasmanian Trail is a wilderness trail that runs 479 km from Devonport in the north of the Australian island state of Tasmania to Dover south of Hobart at the 'bottom' of the island. This site records the preparation (or lack off) by a bunch of 50-year-old-ish old farts for a traverse of the trail by bicycle. Yes, we cycled the trail. On yer Bike, sunshine! It includes reference information, including trail updates and training hints. It includes pictures of our experience. All this for our own amusement and maybe the benefit of those who come after. How did we go? Check on the day by day details under "First Journey" in the navigation menu at left, and then you can see our conculsion under "The Reprise" also at left. We started the journey in November '05, and finished in March '06. (Yes Virginia, we did go home for a few months in between) If you have Questions on the trail send them here trail_questions.


Our Planning Pages. Read the original pages from our first trip penned in ignorance of what lay before us. Also see just how minimalist we can (or can't!) be in the Revenge of the Nerds trip. See "Planning for Take Two" at left.

Tasmanian Trail information (stuff) here

The official Tasmanian Trail website can be found here. These great folks used to have their web-site hosted by the Tasmanian Parks & Wildlife Service, but now they have their training wheels off and are independently wobbling down the trail into a bright future. Which raises the question for us, exactly how do you put training wheels on a horse - surely you don't just remove and then replace its nuts?

A map of the Tasmanian Trail. This comes from a link on the old Tasmanian Trail page on the website of the former Department of Primary Industries, Water and Environment (now the Department of Primary Industries and Water). The page no longer exists, but most of the information has moved to the Tasmanian Trail Association's new website (see link above). The DPIWE map didn't make the transfer, hence its inclusion here.

Website for Bicycle Tasmania, the cycling advocacy group for Tasmania. FAQs specific to the Tasmanian Trail include: 20030520-1, 20030520-3, 20030522, 20040920.

Some of those who have been before or after (aka other trip reports)

Um, er, us. Details at left.

A group ride around Christmas time.

A solo ride, Devonport to Hobart, six days.

An un-supported solo 'light and fast' trip. Devonport to Dover in seven days.

An unsupported solo adventure over three weeks in January 2009.

Webber, S 2001, 'The Tasmanian Trail', in Crowther, N, Classic Mountain Bike Rides, Bulfinch Press, Boston. Covers an eight-day ride along the Trail from Devonport to Hobart.

Fast and easy riding is possible on many of the made sealed and unsealed roads and tracks of the Tasmanian Trail. This isn't one of them. (Photo of a section of the Caves Track, between Bracknell and Arthurs Lake, from Classic Mountain Bike Rides). We recommend this section if you are travelling North to South as it's very pretty; if you have a support vehicle this would be a good day to put the bikes on that, and walk up the track. We suggest you ride to the start of the track and have some fun playing in the ford at the foot of the hill. Ride back out through the gate, load the bikes onto the support vehicle and then have a nice walk up the track and over the all rocks. This track is largely covered in rocks of 4" to 6" diameter which are surprisingly difficult to ride over. See our photos on first journey, day 4.

Reference Links

Some long distance Mountain Biking tips can be found here the Australian bits are quite interesting.

Bicycle Tasmania's comments on prevailing winds, seasonal weather variations, etc. See also the Weather page.

Angry Kid Cycling Films

Road Hog - A lone cyclist wages war against automotive injustice.
Bone - Oh no, the bone...what's that doing there? (A possible scenario with Tasmanian dogs.)