Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park

Summary

Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair is one of the most well known and popular National Park in Australia. Host of the world famous Overland Track, the park is located in the Central Highlands region of Tasmania 165km north-west of Hobart. The park includes Mt Ossa, the highest mountain in Tasmania, and Lake St Clair, Australia's deepest lake, amongst a multitude of features.

Popular Walks

Parent Regions

Features

Without a doubt the Overland Track is the most famous walk in the park. Arguably the pinnacle of Australian bushwalking, the Overland Track is 65km long and generally takes 5-6 days but is often extended with side trips along the way.

The park also has numerous easily accessed day walks at both Cradle Mountain and Lake St Clair, as well as opportunities for visiting other areas of the park with some more effort.

Major features of the park include Cradle Mountain, Dove Lake, Barn Bluff, Mount Pelion East and West, Mt Ossa, Pine Valley (including the Labyrinth and the Acropolis), and Lake St Clair.

Maps

TasMaps has a series of topographic maps that cover the park in detail.

Accommodation

There are multiple private accommodation options at both Cradle Mountain in the north and Lake St Clair in the south. Within the park there are public and private huts and camping areas though restrictions apply on their use.

Contact details

Parks & Wildlife Service websites:

Cradle Mountain - https://parks.tas.gov.au/explore-our-parks/cradle-mountain

Lake St Clair - https://parks.tas.gov.au/explore-our-parks/lake-st-clair

Hard
7.5 km return
3 hrs

Marions Lookout

High on the western side of Dove Lake, Marions Lookout provides breathtaking views to Cradle Mountain and over Dove Lake and Crater Lake.

Hard
5 km return
5 hrs

Mt Ossa Climb

A great climb of Tasmania's tallest Mountain in the beautiful Tasmanian Alpine region.
The return climb itself takes about 5 hours. For about the first 70%, the trail is a moderate upslope with steel and wooden boardwalks which evolves into a laid stone pathway. The last 30% becomes a fairly steep rock and bolder climb. In dry conditions even walkers of low fitness/experience can make this difficult climb. If its raining or snowing I would suggest novice climbers travel with someone with experience or wait until conditions improve. Getting to the base of this climb is the greatest challenge which is explained bellow.

Medium
18 km return
7 hrs

Mt Rufus

Climbs up from Lake St Clair to Mt Rufus, which provides sweeping views over Lake St Clair, Mt Olympus, Frenchmans Cap and the headwaters of the Franklin River. You can return the same way, or do a circuit which takes you back past Shadow Lake (a large alpine tarn). Incredible displays of flowering heath (scoparia) in summer. A well marked track with boardwalks in sections.

Medium
18 km one-way
6 hrs

Narcissus Hut to Cynthia Bay (Lakeside Walk)

The hike from Narcissus Hut to Cynthia Bay along Lake St Clair (also referred to the Lakeside Walk) is the last – or first! – section of the Overland Track, and also makes a pleasant day walk. It's not the most interesting walk you can do, but does traverse long sections of temperate rainforest.

Medium
63 km
8 days

Overland Track

The best-known, and arguably best quality, bushwalk in Australia, the Overland Track traverses the finest of Tasmania's wilderness: rugged mountain peaks, wild alpine moors and deep forests. With a series of side-trips available, no two trips are the same.

Hard
65 km one-way
6 days

OVERLAND TRACK, TASMANIA

6 days/5 nights - Cradle Mountain to Lake St. Clair

Medium
7 km one-way
3 hrs

Pine Valley

If the lure of the Tassie wilds is becoming too much, but you are concerned about 'biting off more than you can chew'. Then Pine Valley is a great 'toe dipper'. Reasonably straightforward to get to with good facilities means the experience is all the better.....no control over the weather though :)

Easy
4.7 km return
1 hr

Platypus Bay

An easy walk to a nice beach, with a nearby "hide" for viewing platypus (best at dawn and dusk).

This easy walk follows the crest of glacial moraine for part of it's route and takes you through eucalypt and then rainforest to the junction of the Cuvier and Hugel Rivers. in Spring and summer many wildflowers, including acacia, waratah, hakea, orchid and leatherwood are in flower. Many birds and other wildlife including wallabies, pademelons, echidnas and tiger snakes make be seen on the walk.

​From Cynthia Bay at Lake St Clair, three varied short walks offer a taste of the southern end of the famous Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park.
The lamairremener tabelti walk offers an insight into the Aboriginal people who lived around leeawuleena (Lake St Clair) for thousands of years.
The Watersmeet Walk takes you to the confluence of the Cuvier and Hugel rivers. A short walk beyond that is a loop to Platypus Bay, where platypus are sometimes seen. All three walks can be combined for a 4.7km figure-of-eight loop.​​​

Very Easy
500 m return
10 mins

Rainforest Walk

This short wheelchair accessible trail behind the Discovery Centre leads through myrtle rainforest to a viewing platform over Pencil Pine Falls.

Medium
13.3 km return
5 mins

Ronny Creek via face track return

Starting at Ronny Creek car park walking the overland track to Marions lookout then down to Lake Willis, join the Dove Lake track and return to Ronny Creek.
Amazing view, off the usual tourist tracks and boardwalks. We Stopped for swim at Lake Willis and had plenty of photo breaks