St. Paul's Dome - Sat. 27th January 2017

A less familiar landmark in the Fingal valley, Mt. Foster is directly east of the more prominent
St. Paul's Dome near Avoca, and the walk is similar. As has been the custom for the past few years, this walk is held in conjunction with Scripture Union's Family Camp North, [click for further information. It may still be possible to enrol!] being held at Scotch-Oakburn Valley Campus (aka Fawlty Towers) near Fingal. A great opportunity to meet some new people, and perhaps to encourage those who haven't tried this level of bush walking before.
As with last year's walk to St. Paul's Dome, there is no track for the final 2 kilometres to the summit, although much of the walk follows old forestry roads, which are not passable by car. Some walkers may find this a challenge and will need to take extra care, especially when coming back down, which is why it is rated Medium.  We will be mostly in lightly forested bushland, however the peak itself offers some views, being relatively open on top. Energetic  children should cope well, and we won't need to hurry.

Walk route:
The walk begins south of Ormley in the Fingal Valley, and the summit is less than 6 km (as the crow flies) south-east of the camp. We enter across private farmland, with the actual walking beginning at about 250 metres altitude. The farm road to the walk starting point should be suitable for 2WD vehicles with reasonable clearance.
After leaving the cars, we cross farmland for a few hundred metres before entering bushland, where the remains of an old degraded logging road will be followed for about 2 km, rising steeply to 600 m altitude, at which point, we leave the old roads and head south-east for a further 2 km, gaining a further 400 m altitude to reach the summit (alt. 1012 m). Because there is no track, the terrain will be rough and rocky in many places, and care will be needed to avoid some bands of scrub. The top is described as fairly open, so hopefully, we will get views in various directions, perhaps even out to the east coast. The return to the cars follows a similar route.
Perhaps the campers will invite us for coffee if we get them back nice and early and in good humour!

Meeting Times and Places:
If you are interested in going on this walk, please phone your walk leader, Basil Tkaczuk, ph. 6331 1155 (if replying by email, please do so by Thursday 25th 9 pm) to book in. The departure time is 8:30am from the Door of Hope Church car park, Launceston. 
Alternative meeting points could be arranged en route, such as Conara Junction at 9 am, or Avoca at 9.30 am. Because we are traversing private farmland, it is important that all vehicles enter the property at Ormley together, as we need to notify the landowner on entry.
Even if meeting us en-route, you still need to contact the walk leader, 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, follow the Midland Highway 55km south to the junction of the Esk Main Road at Conara. Turn left and continue 20 km to Avoca and continue a further 11 km to reach Ormley. Continue past a point where the railway line crosses the highway, and about 500 metres further on, there is a turnoff to the left. This is where we will meet the group from the camp. The actual turnoff for the walk is about 500m before the railway crossing, and heads off to the south.

Water!  There will NOT be any drinkable water on this walk, so please be sure to carry at least 1 litre in a sturdy bottle, and perhaps have some spare water to drink at the car when we get back.
Be aware of possible hazards such as insect bites and snakes. Even though it is summer, it is good practice to carry clothing for a variety of weather conditions from warm and sunny to cold, wet and windy. Walking boots and gaiters are recommended, although not essential. High-sided, durable sneakers and thick socks (no bare ankles, please!) might be a good alternative. Shorts might be uncomfortable due to some scrubby patches.

Click this link for a more detailed discussion of Preparation, Food and Safety guidelines for Boots N' All walks

Map details:

Mt. Foster: 1:100000 map is 8414 (St Pauls) and 1:25000 map is 5637 (St Pauls Dome)
Map references:
Short reference: 737793
Zone      Easting        Northing       Latitude        Longitude
55G      5 73 770       53 79 470    -41.73316     147.88705 

Mt. Foster 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  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. (The files will likely be arranged alphabetically, so the slider on right might help find the correct track).