We are getting to the end of our holidays. Seven months on the road, how fast it all went! Incredibly, the most surprising part of this journey came at the very end, once we set our feet on the island of Tasmanian. What was so familiar (?), we all wondered. Was it the islands’ isolation, the wild but strangely familiar landscape of “mountains, lakes and pointed trees” (as Susie eloquently summed it up), or… was it the cool weather (impacted by the closeness to Antarctica), that after the Red Center felt most welcoming to our overheated bodies (and brains)?!
No matter what it was, we felt at home here… to the point of fantasizing about moving to Tasmania sometime soon! Of course, the relocation would not be such an issue, but my studio (with all the huge stones and heavy equipment) is quite another matter. But where there is a will, there is a way, and we’ll see how things will play out.
One of the last things we wanted to do before heading back to the mainland was to hike for a few weeks on the west coast of Tasi (as it’s lovingly called here). The entire west coast of the island is protected land, and several National Parks are famous for the tallest trees in the Southern Hemisphere. Also, as there are many wild rivers and serine mountain lakes, we wanted to check out some new places for potential future canoe or kayak excursions there.
And that is how we met the most elusive and shrouded in folklore animal of Tasi (if not entire Australia) – the Tasmanian tiger! Although the last of those thylacines officially died in captivity in 1936, there were ongoing rumors of it sighting deep in the ancient forests of the West Coast.
To tell you the truth, we were not looking for the elusive tiger at all, but Pretor (and his ever-so-sensitive nose) had other ideas. He brought “his new buddy” to our camp, and although the encounter was brief, Kajtek managed to take a shot with his camera “to make it official.”
Next Monday, we return to civilization to beautiful Hobart (Tasi’s capital), where we will wait for the ferry to Melbourne. We should be back home in Yandoit on the 10th of July, just in time to start the next chapter of our Spirit Journey. So, hope you will join us on the 19th to launch the third chapter of our exciting tale!
Excerpt from my journal, from our trip across Australia, 2023.