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Overland Track – Day 4: Mt Ossa and Kia Ora

Day 4 begins at the Pelion Hut, and includes the highlight of the trip – the summit of Mt Ossa, Tasmania’s highest mountain!

Climbing Mt Ossa

Climbing Mt Ossa. The view back to Mt Doris and Pelion Gap

This part of the track is a part I have visited before. If you don’t have a week or so to traverse the entire Overland Track, there is a short cut into the Pelion area along the Arm River Track. Some years ago, I walked this track and camped at Pelion Gap in order to spend a night in this magnificent part of Tasmania.

Tasmanian alpine flowers, Mt Ossa

Tasmanian alpine flowers, Mt Ossa

Tasmanian alpine plant, Mt Ossa

Tasmanian alpine plant, Mt Ossa

The first part of the journey today is alongside the Douglas Creek as we gradually climb up to Pelion Gap. Again, we dump our packs and start on the climb to Mt Ossa, and again the weather is on our side and we enjoyed perfectly mild conditions, clear skies and no wind. We had lunch among the scoparia and cushion plants on the side of Mt Doris before setting off.

Mt Ossa summit

Mt Ossa summit, Tasmania. The high point of the Overland Track, and a magnificent blue day for taking in the views.

Mt Ossa summit Cradle Mountain Huts guided walk

The little tarn on the Mt Ossa summit.

Mt Ossa is a relatively easy climb. It is very steep, but the steepness also results in it being a fairly quick walk. From our lunch spot, it took us 1.5 hours to the summit, where we basked in the perfect weather conditions, through a couple of snowballs – just because we could! – and last but not least, soaked up the 360 degree views of Cradle Mountain to the north and Mt Olympus and Frenchmans Cap to the south.

Mt Ossa summit, Overland Track

A f2.8 shot of the summit tarn and distant mountains

Black and White photograph Mt Ossa summit

Enjoying the black and white on a lot of the photos from this trip 🙂

Somewhat reluctantly, the time came to leave the summit and we returned to our packs at Pelion Gap to continue the walk to Kia Ora. The late afternoon light, the beautiful flowers and the birds made for another magic experience in Tasmania’s Wilderness World Heritage Area.

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Overland Track – Day 3: Mt Oakleigh & Pelion Plains
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Overland Track – Days 5 & 6: D’Alton Falls and Lake St Clair
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About Luke

Luke O'Brien runs a stall at Hobart's popular Salamanca Market every Saturday where his prints and cards are available for purchase. Follow Luke's photographic adventures on Twitter at @lukeobrienphoto, at his Facebook page or by subscribing to his email newsletter.