Above: View from Ralph’s Falls Lookout
August 3, 2019
Our next target destination for a short trip was to visit the Victoria Ranges and the walking loop past Cash’s Gorge and Ralph’s Falls, a total of just over an hour’s walk including the side tracks to both lookouts. This area is accessed via the gravel roads through the State Forests from RIngarooma to the North West, or in our case via Pyengana and St Columba Falls Road. Most of this is good graded road except for a short section of abut 3km when you leave the St Columba Falls road; this is both narrow and steep and one of those roads marked “Not suitable for caravans, trailers or large vehicles”!
Once through to the Mount Victoria State Forest the road widens considerably and the views open up; by this time you are already over 800m above sea level, starting from 120m at our temporary “home”.
At the start of the walking track is a car park with Shelter, tables and BBQ opposite, and a single toilet; we stopped here for lunch before returning “home” after our walk.
The walk can be done in either direction and we chose to go anti-clockwise going to Cash’s Gorge first before the majority of the loop. and a much shorter “leg” after the Falls. After a short distance through the bush a boardwalk appears which goes for several hundred metres over what is obviously very swampy ground and across a section of Button Grass plain.
Back into the bush again, but very different from Tasmania’s typical rainforest this is mostly Myrtle forest and native grasses. Finally, after taking a short side track you arrive at Cash’s Gorge Lookout, the view speaks for itself
Returning to the main loop takes us along the longest section of the walk to emerge on to a rocky outcrop just before arriving at the short track to Ralph’s Falls Lookout. The view from the outcrop gives a wider aspect to the valley below than the Lookout itself which is more focused on looking across the gorge to the falls.
Finally we emerge at the falls which get a little “lost” in a background of all the vertical strata f the rock face, but none the less are an impressive drop.
After completing the walk and lunch we returned the same route (not much alternative) and this is a typical view of some of Tasmania’s “managed” eucalypt forests with a range of plantings probably going back over the last 15 years or more and a recently logged patch as well.