Mt Field National Park is an easy day trip from Hobart, one of Tasmania’s most popular destinations and an absolute must do in Autumn!
The park itself, which just turned 100 years old, is a justifiable drawcard, but the drive there, through the Derwent Valley, is an added bonus – it’s absolutely stunning!
From the township of New Norfolk onwards, the Derwent Valley is aglow with row upon row of bright yellow poplars. The soft autumn light illuminates the leaves and a gentle breeze makes them fall gently across your path.
Mt Field is one of the few places in Tasmania to see the ‘turning of the Fagus’, which is a deciduous tree endemic to Tasmania. It’s become a bit of a tradition to do the walk on Anzac Day when the tree turns a mix of vibrant yellows to brown and some deep red if you’re lucky!
There are several walks, closer the visitor centre, where you can park.
Russell Falls is an easy twenty-minute walk along a well-worn dirt track. Because of its accessibility to most, tens of thousands of people come here each year. Water flow if pretty low at the moment but the ferns and the fungi along the way make it an equally enjoyable walk.
An extra ten minutes along the track and you’re at Horseshoe Falls. At the moment, it’s not living up to its name as the water is only flowing down one side of the horseshoe shape. It is, however still lovely to be sucking in lung fulls of crisp, clean air and being so accessible to nature, so close to the capital city.
Another 15 minutes up the track, which includes mostly stairs of wood or stone, and you get to the Tall Trees Walk. You get a taste of the tall trees along the way, but there is also a loop walk of approximately half an hour that takes you through a patch of these tall, slender beauties.
Lady Barron falls is another half an hour along from the Tall Trees. The good thing about this whole walk is that you can decide as you go how far and how much you want to see. Either way, you’ll see beautiful moss covered trees, a waterfall or two, ferns and some fungi and little Tasmanian pademelons if you’re lucky!