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PreCamp Blog08 - Day 6 - Hobart

11th January
This morning it was my camp company's turn to go to Hobart.  For the second day in a row, I was first to breakky so we could get an early start, leaving at 7:30am.  Before coming here, I thought Tassie was small but it still took all morning to get to Hobart.  We had a picnic lunch on the lawns of Parliament House in Salamanca Place before we split up into our afternoon elective groups.

I chose to go on a Mountain Bike descent of Mount Wellington.  It cost extra money but it was worth every cent.  A small bus with a big bike trailer picked us up from our picnic and drove from the city centre, straight up to the top of the mountain more than 1,200m higher.  We had a bit of time to wander around the summit while our guides unloaded the bikes.  The city buildings looked like an ant colony from this high up and it was exciting to think we would be hurtling down the road with all the momentum a 'hill' this big had to offer.

Just before it was time to go, the other groups arrived on our company buses to look around the summit.  Some of them were about to walk down the mountain while others would be dropped off half way down to play lazer skirmish in the scrubby foothills.  A final group were jumping back on the bus to go back to the city for more of a look around.

As we left the summit, there was a tinge of sadness and aprehension as an ugly mushroom cloud started to fill the sky to the north-west.  We learnt later that a bushfire was threatening some small towns a bit further along the range.  This made us think of the awful bushfires in Victoria back in 2009.  We pray that people will be safe.

The start of the ride was fast and smooth as we dropped 750m in height over 10km down to Fern Tree.  We didn't have to pedal at all!  My hands were sore from the brakes though.  From Fern Tree, we switched to rough bush tracks and rode some tricky down hill sections before arriving at Cascades another 350m below.  The final section was a walk/cycle track along Hobart Rivulet which took us all the way in to the city where we finished by the docks.

Once the wind stopped rushing by, the temperature hit us like a tonne of bricks.  Hobart had snuck up to 36 degrees while we were on the mountain!!!  Once again, Tassie's weather continues to surprise us.

We had a bit of time to walk around the shops before a fish and chip dinner on the wharf.  After dinner, a few people went ice skating while most of us did a walking tour through the tunnels under the city centre.

What a day!



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