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Wednesday, May 26, 2004
Freycinet Hike - Day 2 - back to Bicheno
While having breakfast, I was saved the trouble of checking if it was Gaye's tent nearby, as Gaye recognised my tent and boots, then saw me as she walked past. We talked for an hour or two, as I was packing my gear, and then while we were sitting on the beach in the morning sun. She had been diving on the east coast, and was doing this hike in a few more days than me – she'd camped at Wineglass Bay, and was camping two nights at Cooks Beach, and was doing a day walk to Bryans Beach, before walking out tomorrow. Some of the diving sounded great, with seahorses and leafy sea dragons.
We said goodbye again at about 9:30, when I headed off up Cooks Beach. At the end of Cooks Beach, the track went into dry Eucalypt forest, which had occasional views of Mt Freycinet. It continued through the forest, crossing a few creeks, before emerging at the Hazards Beach campsite (which has a toilet). From this campsite, the walk was along Hazards Beach, which was covered in seaweed. The water was a beautiful colour – olive green in the waves, clear light olive a little further out, aquamarine still further out, then rich navy blue after that. There was a fair bit of wind, and the sun reflected off the sand causing some glare, especially with the otherwise overcast sky.
Hazards Beach is much longer than Wineglass Bay beach, and I felt like I was walking along it forever. Consequently, I nearly missed the turnoff to Wineglass Bay. ( I would have, if I hadn't looked up at just the right time). The track between the two beaches travelled in Eucalypt forest for about half an hour, bypassing the nearby swamps. I sat on Wineglass Bay beach and had some lunch, as rain swept in from the west – fortunately not heavy. I sat and read my book for a while, as the bus came at 3:45, and I preferred waiting some of the time there than at the carpark. After about an hour, I was getting cold, so I started back up and over the Hazards.
The climb was steep and tiring, partly because I couldn't be bothered stopping to take my raincoat off. There were quite a few more day trippers about today, probably as it was later in the day. I briefly went to the lookout again, then descended back to the carpark. It started sprinkling rain again at the carpark, and continued on and off until the bus arrived an hour and a half later (I read in the meantime).
After getting back to Bicheno, I got a hamburger and chips for dinner and watched a little TV before bed.