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Cradle Mountain

Walk on the Wild Side

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Cradle Mountain in the heart of Tasmania

Cradle Mountain in the heart of Tasmania ... take a walk on the wild side

Copyright 2000 Australian Tourist Commission

On a clear day it's picture-postcard perfect: a view of mountain against vivid sky, its shape mirrored in placid waters.

Cradle Mountain is Tasmania's most popular wilderness destination, surrounded as it is with vast varieties of flora and fauna and challenging forest walks through often surreal landscapes of lakes, cliffs and gorges etched in stark relief by endless time.

It is, too, an uncompromising, volatile landscape which can often be sheeted in rain -- and winter snow -- and lashed by violent winds.

Cradle Mountain is the crown jewel of the national park which includes Lake St Clair and is part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage area.

At the northern end

Cradle Mountain, at the northern end of the national park, rises 1545 metres into the Tasmanian sky.

The park has an area of 161,000 hectares and includes the glacial Lake St Clair which, at 200 metres deep, is the deepest in Australia.

This is Tasmania's highest Alpine region and in the months before the Australian winter, deciduous trees turn from green to gold and brown, becoming bare as the cold sets in.

There are fewer visitors in the winter months of June, July and August although even then there are the hardier souls on the Overland Track.

Next page: Lake St Clair: Australia's Deepest Natural Freshwater Lake

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