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This true story was written by E T Emmett in the late 1940's. It traces his experiences as he travels on foot, all around Tasmania. Emmett was later to become the Director of Tourism in Tasmania. Emmett tells his stories in a way that I like and I publish it here so that you can enjoy it too. KM


The following pages are based on notebook jottings of a tour of parts of the island of Tasmania during an extended vacation a few years ago. I wish to emphasize the word "parts", for this is not in any sense a guidebook; I went where the road led (when there was a road), and had no definite idea as to the exact route I would follow. A few of the routes spoken of as tracks have since become motor roads. In some instances my journeys resulted in the hastening of the roads, the better tracks and the better camping huts that today's traveller will enjoy. 

I walked. I walked because I was too poor to buy or hire a car, and too proud to be a hitch-hiker. Moreover, a car would have been of little use. It can't jump a fence when you feel inclined to look at a view from a hill in somebody's paddock. Neither could a car be persuaded to make the journey from Cradle Mountain to Lake St Clair, for cars are not very good at crossing trackless mountains, precipitous canyons, and button-grass bogs, nor for crawling across rivers on logs. I don't expect anyone to follow me over the whole route, for, in the words of my gifted friend, Charles Whitham, "a tourist with legs is a curiosity I have not yet seen". But the information I gathered during my tramping is set down for the benefit of any who may visit the localities in more fleeting fashion. Undoubtedly there is an immense amount of pleasure and profit to be gained by flitting along in a car or skimming the earth in a 'plane; but, if you really wish to SEE a country for yourself, there is only one way - walk!


Tasmania by Road and Track - by E T Emmett was originally published by Melbourne University Press.
The images on this site belong to Kelvin Markham and may only be reproduced with permission.
Please contact Kelvin Markham on 0419 152 612 or km@km.com.au