Author(s): John Chapman
The sixth edition was a major upgrade from earlier editons - the guide has 224 pages (fourth edition had 192) and has 141 colour photographs (previous edition had 75 black and white photos). New additions are colour topographic maps for all major tracks and routes and gradient profiles for all major tracks and routes. New areas included are the Picton Range and also an expansion of brief notes of harder or lesser known walking routes. Overall the new guide describes almost 200 days of walking (the previous edition described 125 days). Previously published in 1976 (note form on A4 paper), 1978, 1983, 1990, 1998 and 2008. Covers all the main tracks and routes in South West and Wild Rivers National Parks in Tasmania. This covers the southern half of the Western Tasmania World Heritage Area. Track notes for the northern half are in another guide, Cradle Mountain Lake St Clair National Park. Contains comprehensive track notes, brief background notes on history, botany and geology, comprehensive planning and preparation notes and access details. Walks described are South Coast Track, South West Cape, Port Davey Track, Huon & McKays Tracks, Precipitious Bluff (Southern Ranges), Picton Range, Federation Peak and approaches (Eastern Arthurs and Farmhouse Creek), Western Arthur Range, Mt Anne, and Frenchmans Cap. Included as brief planning notes are the West Coast (Strahan to Port Davey), the Frankland Range, the Denison, Spires and King William Ranges and also a new section of Other Routes which includes Mt Hopetoun, Old River to Federation Peak, White Monolith Range, Vanishing Falls, Mt Norold and the Prince of Wales Range. If you are intending to walk here then I recommend you read the literature provided by National Parks. Travel has changed and Tassielink no longer run scheduled buses - the only regular provider to Scottos Peak, Cockle Creek, the Huon Track etc is Evans Coaches.. For first time visitors to the region, be careful how you use the suggested walking times. The times given are the normal range for fit experienced walkers who are used to the conditions (experience elsewhere often means little in Tasmania as you will find out). The times are only walking times and most groups should add an extra 1 to 2 hours to each section to account for rest and photographic stops. Walkers not used to Tasmanian mud and scrambling with packs often find they take much longer than the suggested times and this is normal. Some writers have stated the times in the guide are fanciful but they are not, as I have beaten every time in the book, but also have taken longer myself at the start of a trip when I am less fit and am loaded with 14 days food. Once you have done 1 or 2 days, you will know how your times compare to the given times and will be able to adjust your estimates accordingly. To suggest a time range of 2 to 7 hours would be not very helpful so I hope readers understand why I have given the average range (example - 2.5 to 4 hours) for fit experienced walkers.