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Should I take the Ferry, or walk around Lake St. Claire?

Should I take the Ferry, or walk around Lake St. Claire?

Lake St. Claire Ferry

I get a lot of people asking me about the final leg of the walk. Is it worth walking around Lake St. Claire? Or should you just catch the ferry straight to the end? On one hand you have an easy way out on a very scenic ferry ride, which is beautiful in itself. On the other hand you have an extra 20km to walk, and in my view, it’s essentially part of the track. Keep reading to find out why you should too.

The Last Day

Day 6 from Windy Ridge Hut to Narcissus is quite an easy walk. It’s all flat and very similar to most Australian bush walks with tall eucalypts and typical scrub. The track also returns to a boardwalk, and also has The Overland Tracks only suspension bridge. What I’m trying to say is you will probably end up at the Narcissus (ferry stop) in a couple of hours. Even if you have a late start you can still be at the stop quite early.

Lake St. Cleaire

Fallen trees over Lake St. Claire

The walk is actually quite beautiful, and flat, however it is not as well maintained as the Overland Track itself. It has quite  lot of tree roots and the track can have debris on it. This, however, was one of the highlights for me. It was great exploring all the fallen (giant) trees around the lake.

Back up Plan

One of the little known facts is that there is another stop for the ferry at Echo Point, about 5km from Narcissus Hut. And the ferry stops there before Narcissus, which means you will get on first.

Walk or ride

I wasn’t sure either, and I think the best way to approach it is to decide how you feel when you get there. We thought about taking the ferry once we got there, because we were ready to just get to the end, and my ankles were shot, but the ferry was booked out by Cradle Huts Tours, so it was going t be a 3 hour wait, so we just went for it. We could have got picked up at Echo Point, but we just thought let’s do it. The walk is definitely a great one, and so is the boat ride. In the end for us it came down to simply saving a bit of money, and feeling like we hadn’t cheated.

Fern Forrest

Fern Forrest, Lake St. Claire’

We definitely felt more accomplished after walking the final leg.

Have you walked around Lake St. Claire? Let me know your thoughts. Or if your planning on it let me know if you have any further questions that I can help you out with.

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