Dial Range and Ferndene – 20th March
The Dial Range is a prominent feature of the northwest coastal hinterland, rising steeply behind Penguin and extending south to the Gunns Plains area. The most prominent feature, the Gnomon, drops precipitously just a few km south of the coast, but is actually not as intimidating as it looks to climb. Short but steep climbs, somewhat unsteady descents, forests, views, old mines and the pretty Ferndene reserve all feature in this walk.
To allow a traverse route, some cars will be left at Ferndene, and the walk will start from the Mt Gnomon carpark. A steep initial climb rising 190 metres gets you quickly up to a spectacular view at the summit of Gnomon. The walk continues relatively level for 1.5 km north to Mt Dial, just 10 metres lower than Gnomon and then descends nearly 400 metres over the next 3 km, quite steeply in places, to magnificent Ferndene through the Mount Dial recreation area, noting some old mines on the way through. Total distance is approximately 7 km and 2 hours of walking. Despite the somewhat rocky and slippery track in parts, the walk is rated medium, and suitable for reasonably fit people, including energetic and resilient younger children.
Meeting Times and Places:
If you are interested in going on this walk, please phone James Todd on 0439 950 965 to book in. Meet 10 am at Hiscutt Park, Crescent Street Penguin by taking the right hand turn straight after the traffic lights if coming from Burnie or off the Bass Highway. A pond and windmill make it easy to spot. Please negotiate any alternative travel arrangements with the leader. You must contact the walk leader per details above if intending to join this 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 Burnie: Follow the Bass Highway east from Burnie, turning off at Howth to follow the coastal road to reach the meeting place – 16 km. If coming from Devonport, its 22 km via the Bass Highway. Take the second exit off the highway, turn right at the traffic lights and the right turn straight after gets you to Hiscutt Park. An hour and a half from the middle of Launceston (130 km) is ample time to make it to Penguin.
To access the walk from Penguin, head 3 km south up Hardy’s Rd and turn right into Ironcliffe Rd. A little under 3 km will bring you to Ferndene, where some cars will be left to allow for the traverse. Follow Ironcliffe Rd. a further 4.5 km south to reach the Dial carpark and the start of the walk.
Equipment and Warnings:
Bring sturdy shoes, wet/cold-weather gear (even in March, Tasmania’s weather can vary greatly), plenty of water, lunch and snacks. Optional: trekking poles, gaiters and camera
The following codes [from our 2021 walks calendar] apply:
S Steep incline for at least part of the way
Click this link for a more detailed discussion of Preparation, Food and Safety guidelines for Boots N’ All walks
Map details: Mt Gnomon & Mt Dial: 1:100000 map is Tasmap 8115 (Forth) and 1:25000 map is 4044 (Stowport)
Short ref.188413 for Gnomon and 195421 for Mt Dial
………….. Zone Easting Northing Latitude Longitude
Gnomon: 55G 4 18 900 54 41 380 -41.17487 146.03314
Mt Dial: 55G 4 19 630 54 42 240 -41.16720 146.04195
Mt.Gnomon (alt. 430 m) is worth 1 peakbagger point and Mt Dial (alt. 480m) another 1 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.
For GPX (.gpx) and Google Earth (.kml) versions of the track: Click here to browse our collection.
Direct links: GPX for this walk … KML for this walk
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).