Having struggled for sleep in the hot Queensland nights leading up to my departure, I saw tonight as a chance to rectify the situation. Not so, as a dawn wake-up call came from a couple of (apparently) hungry ducks. Evidently news of my generosity toward that particular animal back home has reached these shores. I fed them and started gathering my things for today's trip.
I headed south from Hobart, up and down along Sandy Bay road, which offered some very interesting coastal scenery along the way. I paused at some old prison ruins at the southern end of Hobart to apply some sunscreen (something I failed to do yesterday and was now paying for). I also took in what claims to be the world's oldest shot tower and climbed the 318 steps to a platform from where a volatile mixture (arsenic was one of the ingredients) was dropped into a pot from a great height.
Further south the ups and downs got bigger (and the scenery more dramatic)throught the towns of Margate and Snug (where I bought some particularly sweet local strawberries), before arriving at Kettering for the ferry across the D'entrecasteoux Channel (henceforth referred to strictly as "the channel"). a 15-minute, $3 ferry ride brought me to an apparently rather barren looking Island.
Looks can be deceiving. A quick 12km into the ride I was rewarded with great channel views as I approached the Neck - a narrow isthmus less than 100 metres wide joining North and South Bruny. Once again local advice (thanks Rowan) led me to the Bruny Neck camping ground at the southern end of the neck, a deserted campsite surrounded by bushland, where the only sound was the occasional wave crashing on the beach nearby.
Late in the afternoon I took a quick tour of South Bruny. After feasting on some very nice local scones at a cafe, I headed across to Adventure Bay on the eastern side, yielding great coastal views along the way. At times this ride was comparable to the Great Ocean road (and I do not say that lightly!). After this I doubled back across Mt Mangana, a dirt road climbing around 500 metres through an enchanted forest. I thought about taking the walking track to the summit, but by this time it was 6.30pm and getting bloody cold, so I did a cold descent before returning to the campsite.
Another thing noticeable about South Bruny is the amount of wildlife around. I was not, however, fast enough with the camera to capture anything. Perhaps I'll stick with landscapes!