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Walk Notes

Fisher Bluff - Sat. 6th May 2017

Fisher Bluff is a peak in the Lake Mackenzie area that offers great views of the Little Fisher River area, Mersey Crag, Turrana Bluff, Walls of Jerusalem, Clumner Bluff and other well known landmarks. It involves a tracked walk at the beginning followed by off track walking to the summit and back through beautiful alpine terrain across grass, ferns, cushion plants and small rocks, around pools, tarns and lakes and past pencil pine forests. It is rated moderately hard because of the distance and also the off track section where it can be uneven underfoot. It is suitable for walkers, including resilient older children, who have had some experience with steep and rocky tracks as well as off-track alpine walking, and able to keep going for sustained distances.
This walk was originally scheduled for 6th February 2016, but could not go ahead because of the extensive bushfires that were active in the area at that time. It should be noted therefore that several segments of this walk will be through burnt areas and so walkers should be prepared for the countryside to be different from what they might have otherwise expected, especially on the tracked section.

Walk route:
From the car park at Lake Mackenzie, already 1100m altitude, we walk around the boom gate, along the road across a bridge and soon leave the road to follow the Blue Peaks track for 2.6 km, taking about one hour, and climbing about 150m. We then head west and begin the off track part of the walk. For about two hours we traverse 4 km over gentle rises and open valleys, rising about a further 100m until we come to a lovely pencil pine forest at the base of the bluff itself. From here we begin the final approach, taking about 30 mins to cover the 50 m climb and 1 km distance to the high point at just over 1400 m altitude. We will most likely return the same way. Total return walk distance is approximately 16 km .

Meeting Times and Places:
If you are interested in going on this walk, please phone Phil Andrew on 0408 014 757 or 6300 1067 to book in. The departure time is 7:00 am from Door of Hope carpark in South Launceston. An early start is needed because the daylight will close in early at this time of year and we need a good safety margin when undertaking a long walk with a group. Meeting points along the way could be 7.30 at the Mole Creek Road roundabout at the western end of Deloraine, 7.50 at Mole Creek or 8.05 at the Lake Mackenzie (Devil's Gullet) Road junction with the Mersey Forest Road. 
 However, you still need to contact the walk leader per details above if intending to walk. The leader should be notified of any other people you intend to bring along. Please be at any meeting place 5 minutes ahead of departure time.

To access this area from northern Tasmania: 
From Launceston, proceed along the Bass Highway to Deloraine (about 51 km), but do not turn off at the eastern exit into Deloraine. Instead, continue across Meander R. and up hill to the western exit, and to the roundabout at start of Mole Creek Rd. A further 24km will bring you to Mole Creek. Continue west past Mole Creek, on what is now Liena Rd, making sure you turn south at the caravan park 4 km from the town. The road continues west until about 14 km from Mole Creek, it branches south, now called Mersey Forest Road. A little over 6 km south, you will pass a  turnoff to Cradle Mountain and Sheffield, and about 300 metres further, take the turn on left to Devil's Gullet/Lake Mackenzie. Follow this road about 19 km, and just short of the Lake Mackenzie dam, turn south to find the car park and boom gate from where the walk starts.

Warnings:
D...Drive distance requires early departure – 7:00 am
L...A long day’s walk – in excess of 3 hours each way.
E...Exposed alpine conditions – can be dangerous in poor weather if not fully equipped.
This walk is above 1100 metres altitude for the whole distance and can be very exposed if the weather is bad, especially at this time of year. Be prepared! Walkers are advised to wear boots due to uneven surfaces. Gaiters recommended due to off-track walking. You should always carry wet weather gear as well as warm clothing in case of sudden weather changes.
Follow this link for further information on clothing suggestions for exposed conditions.
Click this link for a more detailed discussion of Preparation, Food and Safety guidelines for Boots N' All walks.


Map details:

Fisher Bluff: 1:100000 map is Tasmap 8114 (Mersey) and 1:25000 map is 4438 (Lake Mackenzie)
Map reference:
Short ref. 438823
Zone      Easting        Northing       Latitude        Longitude
55G      4 43 920      53 82 490     -41.70740    146.32593 

Fisher Bluff is worth 1 peakbagger point. For listing of peakbagger points, see the Hobart Walking Club Peakbagger's Guide (2000 revision) which can be downloaded (Excel) from http://tastracks.webs.com/peakbaggers.htm  The same web page contains several other listings of Tasmanian peaks.

GPX version of the track: Click here to download. Google Earth version of the track: Click here to download.
Right-click on the file and save target as to a location of your choice. (Suggest you click the Last modified at top to sort by date to get the most recent at top to find the file for the next walk).