We had wonderful sunny weather while we explored the Tarkine area. As we weren't allowed on dirt roads in our motorhome we headed back to Stanley for the night.
The most distinctive landmark in Stanley is 'The Nut', an old volcanic plug. Bass and Flinders sighted it on their circumnavigation of Van Diemen's Land (now called Tasmania) in 1798 and named it Circular Head. It has steep sides and rises to 143 metres with a flat top.
We hadn't realised how popular Stanley was or how few dining options there were. The pub had a two hour wait for a table for dinner so we decided to eat at an Asian Fusion restaurant. Grae payed $28 for Beef Pho which he has back home for less than half this price and I had a Prawn Noodle dish for a whopping $32.
After dinner we joined the crowd and waited for sunset to try and spot more Fairy Penguins at the new viewing platform, sadly no luck this time and once the sun went down it was freezing and we certainly weren't wearing warm clothes.
After our night in Stanley we headed for the iconic Cradle Mountain.
In the National Park we did a couple of short walks including to Granite Rock and to the Boathouse. Both walks were in opposite directions around Dove Lake. On one of the walks we saw a black snake curled up near the path trying to maintain its warmth as it was a cloudy cool day.
We spent the night at Discovery Parks campground which was conveniently located opposite the National Park entrance. For dinner we ate at the lovely Cradle Mountain Lodge. During the night on her way to the amenities block Dan had a close encounter with a very large possum. We also heard screeching animal noises which were probably Tasmanian Devils.
Cradle Mountain is certainly a place of exceptional natural beauty in the heart of Tasmania. Sadly though overnight the weather turned colder and wetter so by morning it was raining and very misty. We decided it wasn't worth doing any more walks and hopefully in the future will get a chance to revisit this beautiful park.