Montagu Thumbs Circuit – Sat. 13th June 2020

Our first walk after the relaxing of Tasmanian Government pandemic restrictions, and the second of our new Southern Tasmania series, Montagu Thumbs is a tough but rewarding walk offering great views of Hobart  and the Huon area, with a visit to Wellington Falls on the way home. 
Rules for Stage 2 of the government’s Roadmap to Recovery apply. Numbers are limited to 20, but travel restrictions no longer apply. A reminder, however, that if there is a sudden increase in the number of coronavirus infections in the region, we may be required to cancel or modify the walk.
Your participation will be at the discretion of the walk leader, but those who contact him earlier will be given priority if more than 20 people register. The distance and steep climbing suggest this walk is suited for more experienced walkers, including energetic older children, who are used to walking rough mountain tracks and have a good level of fitness.Walk route:
From the Cathedral Rock car park at the end of Betts Rd, the walk follows the North West Bay River for about 2 km to reach a track junction. Keeping left, the track gains 300 metres altitude, mostly westward on an old fire trail that zig-zags up the mountainside for 1.7 km, before reaching a junction to head north to Cathedral Rock (884m altitude), a further 400 metres with some steep climbing and clambering. Beyond that, the track heads another 1.2 km in a NW direction along a very exposed ridge with steep drops on each side, so a good head for heights is required. Nearly 100 metres altitude is gained to reach Montagu Thumbs.
The next 1.8 km is thankfully relatively level and sheltered, and takes one past Mt. Montagu to the junction with the Wellington Falls track. If the party is energetic and making good time, Mt. Montagu (alt. 1063m) may be climbed – an extra 1 km round trip with 180m gain in altitude. From the Falls junction, heading east, then south, there is a steep descent to rejoin the North West Bay River at Wellington Falls.Continuing south, thenSE, the track remains fairly level for a km or so, then descends to meet the Pipeline Track, before continuing to drop steeply to rejoin the river, which is crossed to meet the track followed in the early part of the walk This part drops 400 metres over 2.8 km, with a further 2 km of relatively level walking to return to the car park. Total walk distance is about 14.5 km.
Want a preview? Watch https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nCH8ZS5yoe8
Can’t do the walk because you live too far away, or you weren’t in the first 9 to register? Also follow that YouTube link for an “Armchair Walk”.

Meeting Times and Places:
If you are interested in going on this walk, please phone Dan Hutchison on 0457 765 907 to book in.
For this walk, and because of social distancing requirements, please meet Dan at the start of the walk – Sat. 13th June 7:55 am for 8 am start. See road details below. Please negotiate any alternative travel arrangements with the leader. Either way, you must 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 Hobart: From Hobart city, follow up Davey St. and continue as it becomes Huon Road, past the Mt. Wellington turnoff. Continue through Neika and turn into Betts Rd, about 22 km from city. Alternatively, the area can be reached via Southern Outlet and Huon Hwy, turning west into Leslie Rd, and follow through Leslie Vale to reach Huon Rd. after 2.9 km. Betts Rd. is directly opposite Leslie Rd. Follow Betts Rd a little over 1 km to reach the car park and start of the walk.  

Equipment and Warnings:
Bring sturdy shoes, wet/cold-weather gear, plenty of water, lunch and snacks.
Optional: trekking poles, gaiters and camera
  The following codes [from our 2020 walks calendar] apply:
     B    Boulder field – see notes (above) about exposed ridge near Cathedral Rock
     S    Steep incline for at least part of the way
     E    Exposed alpine conditions; can be dangerous in poor weather if not adequately equipped.
     L    A long day’s walk – in excess of 3 hours each way.
Click this link for a more detailed discussion of Preparation, Food and Safety guidelines for Boots N’ All walks

Map details:Cathedral Rock: 1:100000 map is Tasmap 8312 (Derwent) and 1:25000 map is 5024 (Longley)
Map references:
Short ref. 155460
Zone      Easting        Northing       Latitude        Longitude
55G     5 15 640      52 46 220      -42.93649     147.19168

Mt Montagu: 1:100000 map is Tasmap 8312 (Derwent) and 1:25000 map is 5024 (Longley)
Map references:
Short ref. 139478
Zone      Easting        Northing       Latitude        Longitude
55G     5 15 640      52 46 220      -42.93649     147.19168
55G     5 14 050      52 47 980      -42.92067     147.17215    

Cathedral Rock (alt. 884 m) is worth 1 peakbagger point. Mt. Montagu  (alt. 1063m) is worth 2 peakbagger points. 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.
For GPX (.gpx) and Google Earth (.kml) versions 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).