Through Tasmania's
              unique rail heritage
              we discovered the
              inspiring story of the
              pioneers who built
              the railway more
              than 100 years ago.
              Over 35km journey
              took us through the
              wooded mountainous
              range made possible
              by a system developed
              by a Swiss Engineer
using a cog system to pull the train
up the mountain, and keeping it from
rolling back.
Tasmania is separated from mainland
Australia by the 240 km stretch of Bass

It is Australia's smallest state

Primarily established as a penal settlement

The Tasmanian Devil is the largest
carnivorous marsupial in the world

Tasmania has the world's cleanest air and
purest water

There are more than 2000km of walking
tracks in Tasmania and 18 national parks

Tasmania can be 40.8 °C (105.4 °F) and
the lowest was -13.0 °C (8.6 °F).

Tasmania is approximately the same size
(68,331 square kilometres or 26,376
square miles) as West Virginia

Australia has the greatest number of
       In November, we sailed Northern
Winds from Fiji to New Zealand for the cyclone season
and decided to take a trip to Tasmania  while we waited
for our new main sail to be  constructed.  
Beautiful landscapes. . .
Australia:  December 3, 2008 - Jan 5, 2009
Port Arthur
Did you know that a Kangaroo can attack by
grabbing you with their arms and kicking you with
their legs?   Adult Roos' can do a lot of damage by
resting back on  their tails and kicking their powerful
legs.  Take a look at their weapons;

Check out this video - they are cute but...
Wombats quickly became a favorite of
ours.  They are the closest relative to the
Koala. Both have a plate in their hind end.  
For defense, the wombat will enter his hole
(burrow) headfirst using their hind quarters
as a shield to predators.  The Koala also
has a plate that is more of a
V shape that
allows the Koala to nudge up to a fork in
the tree.  
Wombats are also Marsupials
Marsupials:  mammals of which the
females have a pouch containing the teats
where the young are fed and carried.
Which country has the most Marsupials?
Pademelon:  the smallest
of the macropods.  They
basically look like a small
Wallabie or Roo.  The Males
can grow to 25". They are
hard to find and they hide in
the bush.
! We were told not to approach the males !
Joey Jumps in Pouch!
They carry their joey for up to 1 Year!
Loved Taking Pictures of the
Tasmania wildlife !
Kim: "Bob, step closer?"
Bob:  "Do you know where
that thing kicks!"
A newborn Red Kangaroo takes about 3 minutes to
crawl from its mother's cloaca into her pouch where
it can secure one of 3 teats.
Tasmania - Australia
We rented a car and drove Tassie for a month.  The wonderful wildlife and
marine life is abundant and with the lack of predators, often not afraid.   
Tasmanian Devil
Echidna (pronounced: ee-kid-na)
With its blood-curdling scream and bone
-crushing jaws, the Tassie Devil looks and
sounds like a ferocious predator. It is
Australia's most famous carnivore and it has
or animals the size of a rat.  It is an expert
scavenger that would rather feed on carrion
or steal prey.

Sadly, Lymphatic cancer has wiped out 80%
or the Devil population since 1995.  The
facial tumour disease causes tumors to
form in and around the mouth, interfering
with feeding and eventually leading to death
by starvation.  
Origination of the disease: unknown
Distribution: When animals bite each other
in the face, as they do during mating season,
tumor cells are passed from host to host.
Weight to 10lbs
Biscuit Starfish
Love Birding - Why? - Australian bird life
is colorful, approachable and prolific.
Many Crimson Rosella
are socialized and
will take nuts from your hand
in populated areas
Galah Cockatoo's
King Parrot - Endemic
to Eastern Oz -
Another to feed from
Giant West Coast lobster
(Tasmanian crayfish to the locals)
Mako Shark
Catch of the day!
Wallaby and her Joey
Echidnas Are A Cross
Between A Platypus,
Anteater and Porcupine -
And They Lay Eggs.
           to see the
puggle (baby), yet to grow
his spines.
Click image
A Koala curls into a ball to keep warm
and sprawls out to cool down.

The Koala's closest relative is the
wombat, and both have pouches that
open to the rear.

Koalas eat Eucalyptus leaves
and have developed  a tolerance for the
toxic chemicals found in them

Koalas spend as much as nineteen hours
of every day sleeping

Koalas have a favoured home range
normally less than 3 hectares in size

The biggest threat to the Koala
population is the human and logging
Koalas have a cartilage plate in their
hind quarters that allows them to sit
for hours on end motionless in the
strangest of positions
Koalas are not found in the wild through out
Tasmania, they are endemic to Australia
mainland.  We stopped along the road when
we saw fur balls in the trees along Kennett
river in South East Australia.  90% of them
were sleeping but we were fortunate to catch
this one actively eating.
It is amazing how such small
branches can support these
This male was changing trees  just
feet from me. They are not afraid
which is one reason why the
aborigines clubbed them for food.
This guy was my favorite.  He
had just finished eating and
his eyes were about to close
What do Koala's sound like?
Cradle Mountain
Three full days trekking Cradle Mountain and Dove Lake.   You can see Cradle
Mountain far off in the distance.  We are standing about a third of the way to Cradle
Mountain and the gold star denotes our final destination.
Fun Facts
Click Images to  Enlarge
Bay of Fires
4-Day guided walk in Mt Williams national park
Wobbegong Shark
Egg Cassing
Embryo - Click Image
The Sharks lay there egg-casings with a type of living
umbilical cord that attach's itself to the Kelp.  A huge
storm ripped up the Bull Kelp and deposited it on the
beach.  We were lucky enough to have found a casing
with an actual embryo in it.  
The spotted Wobbegong Shark is a bottom
dweller also known as carpet sharks.
Leafy Sea Dragon
This Leafy
Seadragon skelaton
was found on the
beach.  What do they
normally look like?
Mote Cuttle Fish
Christmas Day 2008!!
Even the Christmas Beetle joined us!
Our awesome Guides
"Daisy and Zane"
Our new friends that completed the group
for the December 24 - 26 Bay of Fires Hike
Tahune Airwalk
Explore the trees along the
40-metre high steel airwalk.  
A 671 meter walk took us
through the canopy of some
famous trees.  
Dismal Swamp
Ledgerwood Memorial Park
In 1918, 7 trees were planted for soldiers
killed in WWI.  When these trees were
declared dangerous in 2001, the towns folk
decided to commission an artist to chainsaw
each stump to the likeness of the men they
were planted for.  Each man has a tree along
main street representing his life.
Touring Tasmania
                                                                 Dismal Swamp is a natural blackwood forest sinkhole,
believed to be the only one of its kind in the world. Formed over thousands of years by
dissolving dolomite, the 40-metre/130-foot deep sinkhole is a unique forest habitat
supporting a range of plant and animal species. You slide down a tunnel to Enter...
poppy crop and extrats the opiate alkaloids
for use inthe production of painkillers and
other medicines.  Most crops were protected
by electric fences with "Danger" signs.
Click Image
Is an uninhabited N/E coast
that was named for the aboriginals fires seen by the early settlers on their way down to Hobart.  
Kim: "Bob I use to show horses"
Bob: "I know but this one doesn't eat hay"
Kim: "Bob?"
Bob: "ZZzzzzzzz"
Bob: "Look Where We're Going!"
Kim: "Today???????"
Bob: "Hard to believe"
Trowunna is a wildlife sanctuary 'Rescue                                                                                                                                       and Release' reserve and is committed to caring
for injured and orphaned wildlife.  The park                                                                                                                                    then becomes a release site for many of these
animals through a process called soft release.  Releasing straight into the wild, hard release, often doesn't work.  Soft release is where they care for the animal at the
park and after a while let it roam freely around so they can monitor the progress.  Then release is more successful.  Some animals will never be able to be released
into the wild.  These animals find a sanctuary at Trowunna.  Bob and I were able to walk the reserves natural grounds and wild bush to discover a world of timorous
animals receptive to interaction with due patience and gentle movements.  Fortunate enough to feed Roos and approach Wallabies and Pademelons.  Trowunna has
a great range of marsupials, birds and reptiles including the Tassie Devils, Wombats, Quolls, Cockatoos, Koalas and Potoroo's.  Since the sanctuary is so remote,
the property is completely natural.  I was a highlight of our trip to Tasmania.
Another find the Cuttle Bone of
the Cuttle Fish.  Not a fish - but
a squid?