This 155km walk is located in the far South West of Tasmania. It comprises two sections with Melalueca, where you can be resupplied by plane, marking the end of the Port Davey Track and the start of the South Coast Track if walking from North to South.
South West Coast Track
6-8 days one way, 85km one way
Bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may be long, rough and very steep. Directional signage may be limited
The South Coast Track includes a number of creek and river crossings and one boat crossing. At creek and river crossings, if the water level is above your knees you should retreat and wait until the level has dropped.
A valid parks pass is required for entry to Tasmania’s national parks.
Port Davey Track
4 to 5 days one way, 70-kilometre track traverses remote wilderness within the Southwest National Park, part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Site. The Tasmanian Parks & Wildlife Service recommend that experienced bushwalkers can take four-to-five days to cover the track in one direction.
The tracks may be combined as a long continuous trek requiring around eight to fourteen days. The only resupply is at Melalueca and resupply must be planned. If walking one way on one of the tracks only most hikers fly into Melalueca and walk out as flights can be disrupted by weather.
Start and Finish
The Port Davey and South Coast walking tracks lie within the Southwest National Park Tasmania and take walkers through the heart of over 600,000 hectares of wild, challenging country. They are more remote than many other walks in Tasmania and require a high level of competence in the bush.
The Port Davey Track is 70 km in length and used by walkers between Scotts Peak Road and Melalueca. The South Coast Track is 85 kilometres in length and used by walkers between Cockle Creek and Melaleuca.
Start: Port Davey Track at Huon Campground at the end of the Scotts Peak Dam Rd.
End: South Coast Track at Boltons Green Campsite, Cockle Creek.
Tasmania’s wild southern coastline is the backdrop for this spectacular, but challenging walk. Along the 155 km combined Port Davey and South Coast tracks you will hike windswept beaches, scramble around rocky headlands climb over hills and mountain ranges and often endure mud and wet feet along the buttongrass plains. This walk is a true adventure – and you must be an experienced hiker to to take it on.
From the Scotts Peak Dam Road in the north, the track trailhead is located adjacent to the Huon Campground, and heads south towards the Arthur Range and then west to the Crossing Plains. Further south, the track runs adjacent to the Crossing River, moving through the Lost World Plateau, following the Erskine Range to the west and the Rugby Range to the east. The track crosses the Spring River before it reaches the eastern side of Jo Page Bay, and to the point of crossing the Bathurst Channel, west of Bathurst Harbour. The track’s southern terminus is at Melaleuca where the track converges with the South Coast Track at the Melaleuca Visitor Services Site. Once at Melaleuca you will commence the South Coast Track if heading south. This is one of Tasmania’s most challenging multi-day walks. Walkers should be experienced and well-prepared. The South West Coast Track will see you climbing the Iron Bound ranges with an exposed ridge walk where there could be snow wind rain or fabulous views. The beaches are wild and beautiful and the rainforests are ancient. Walking is often muddy across the button grass plains. The campsites have no huts and some have pit toilets.
The Tasmanian Parks & Wildlife Service suggest trek times as follows:
- Scotts Peak to Junction Creek – 3 hours
- Junction Creek to Watershed Camp – 8 hours
- Watershed Camp to Spring River – 5 hours
- Spring River to Melaleuca – 10 hours
- Melaleuca to Cox Bight/Point Eric – 4.5 hours
- Cox Bight/Point Eric to Louisa River – 8 hours
- Louisa River to Little Deadmans Bay – 10 hours
- Little Deadmans Bay to New River Lagoon – 4 hours plus boat crossing
- New River Lagoon to Granite Beach – 6.5 hours
- Granite Beach to South Cape Rivulet – 10 hours
- South Cape Rivulet to Cockle Creek – 4.5 hours
This walk is much more difficult than the popular Overland Track as there are no huts (once you leave Melaleuca) and strong winds, steady rain, and even snow in elevated areas, can occur at any time of the year. In one location, walkers are required to row a dinghy across a lagoon outlet. South Coast walkers need to be experienced and completely self-sufficient.
Ref: Wikipedia and Parks Tasmania