A Young Man's Adventure--How the world has cahnged

Peter's mother Margaret sent me this diary of her husband Ken's trip to Tasmania in 1948-1949, fascinating to read, I thought I would put an extract here each day.

KEN HEATH - TASMANIAN TOUR - DECEMBER 1948 - JANUARY 1949

Ken was 21 years old and 2 friends Barry Newman and Ross Swadling

27.12.48 - 10.15 left ANA offices Margaret St. city. 11.15 left Mascot in Skymaster Tatana, weather hot and hazy. Ascended to 8,ooo ft. Served cold salad over Albury at mid-day. I was very hungry it tasted excellent. Followed up with fruit salad and ice cream. 12.30 passed Hume Weir and Albury. 12.50 weather worsened and hit rain squall 1.35 touched down Melbourne weather very hot. 2.15 left Melbourne by DC3 – very smooth flight over Bass straight. 4.10 Launceston and bus into town. Accomm at YMCA in Recreation room. Sent excess luggage on to Queenstown by Sullivans Tours. Had tea and walked down to Tamar River.

28.12 - Up at 5.45 had shower, packed and left 7.00. Caught tram out to Bass Highway and picked up a lorry at 8.10 which took us 10 miles. 9.10 car with young chap and his sister took us to Latrobe – 10.30. Went to Railway station but decided train cost too much and took too long so walked out of town and after about 1 hour got a lift to Railton. Here at 12.30 we sacrificed 2/- and caught rail motor to Sheffield where we were met by a sinister character who would transport us to Waldhein for a pound a piece. After a slight parley we settled for $2.10.0 for 3. Left 2.00 for the 42 mile trip to Waldhein. The country was really worth seeing, great volcanic mountain formed a background for beautifully fertile little farms and rushing snowfed streams. Arrived Waldhein 4.20 where we found a typical Tyrolean Chalet, built by an Austrian Gustaf Weindorfer , who opened up this country. At 5.00 we set off towards the foot hills and after climbing a thousand feet we were able to look down into Crater Lake on our right. Slushing our way through the mud, we ascended to the top of The Marions and obtained our first good view of Cradle Mtn. looking for all the world like something thrown up straight from Hades, with its fantastically pointed ridges and patches of white.. The air was now becoming very nippy and we soon began to pass small drifts of snow – the first we had seen. At 7.00pm we reached Kitchen Hut, not a very grand affair but a refuge from wind or rain which might come up during the night.. Soon after we got the fires going we were enveloped in a low cloud, which we had seen coming from Barn Bluff. This cut down visibility to 20 yds and temperature to a very low degree. Our tea of stew and boiled rice was not concluded until 9,45 and we finally got to bed by 10.30. One of my teeth is tender and feels as though an abscess is forming. Kept me awake until 2am when I took an aspirin which put me off to sleep and stopped the tenderness.


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