Tag Archives: Jordan River

Across the Jordon and into Greens Point as I walked northwards along the Derwent River

In leaving Herdsmans Cove, I was back on the East Derwent Highway and immediately crossing the bridge northwards across the Jordan River.

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Looking towards the Green Point peninsula at the far end (Derwent River is on the other side of the peninsula) from the Jordan River Bridge: suburbs of Herdsmans Cove on the left and Green Point on the right.

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I was off the bridge by 11am and walking up the bitumen path beside the Highway until I reached a yellow gravel path to the left, where I turned and continued on with wild fennel flourishing on the sides of the path along with brightly flowering gazanias growing wild, walked around another gate and by 11.11am I reached the sign for the Bridgewater Foreshore Trail.

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In the distance I could see rain showers softening over Mount Wellington but I was dry and walking in the sunshine. After rounding another gate, a sign pointed out the Green Point Scenic Loop off to the left. I headed along this in a southward direction enjoying the fresh smell of the gum trees and the perfume of the wattle flowers.

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At 11.35am I reached the point of Green Point at the junction of the Jordan River with the Derwent River and sat on the grass beside the path for a brunch break.  My breakfast was eaten at 6am so I was a smidgin hungry by this time. A strong south westerly wind blew across the Derwent River and buffeted me. The freshness was invigorating.

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Ten minutes later I was up and walking on.

A few minutes after midday I had passed some more gates and signs and had chosen the trail closest to the shore leading north. On my right were the fences of some houses, and either someone had dumped their rubbish over the fence or the wind had blown it there. I was amused to see a blue hard plastic chair hanging on a washing line.

Just after 12.30pm I walked around the Green Point Waste Water Treatment Centre, or as some maps have it, the Sewage Works.  The fresh smells of wattle or gum trees couldn’t reach my nose here. For some reason?

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Near the Treatment Works I walked back on a street for some metres before coming around a corner where I was able to return to the yellow gravel road (am I Tasmania’s version of Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz?).

Now I was about to walk around the suburb of Bridgewater.

The Paredarerme people – the original indigenous owners of the land along the Derwent River

Prior to European settlement the district around Bridgewater and Herdsmans Cove was inhabited by the Paredarerme Aborigines, the largest indigenous tribe in Tasmania.  Geographical locations associated with this group include the Derwent estuary, Jordan River and New Norfolk and much further afield along the east coast and into central Tasmania. ‘Oyster Bay Tasmanian’ or ‘Paritarami’ is the aboriginal language of these people.

From http://www.heritage.tas.gov.au/media/pdf/September%202011.pdf , “the history of the Paredarerme (Oyster Bay) tribe, estimated to be the largest Tasmanian tribe at the time of European settlement with 10 bands totalling 700 to 800 people. Theirs was a nomadic, but complex society, with strong cultural traditions. The Paredarerme people constructed uniquely Tasmanian reed and bark boats. It is believed these vessels date back at least 4,000 years and were used to access offshore islands and traversing inland waterways.” The site, http://www.museumsaustralia.org.au/admin/email_templates_archive_message.php?id=428 continues with additional information: “Collecting the plant materials would have involved the whole tribe, with men collecting large pieces of bark and being responsible for the canoe’s construction. It would take considerable strength to lash the plant materials to form a strong and robust vessel.  These would have been used to collect shellfish, crayfish, and to hunt seals along the coast. They were also used to cross the stretch of water now known as Mercury Passage to Toarra-Marra-Monah (Maria Island), choosing good weather to cross from Rheban to Lachlan Island, then across to Maria Island.”

Paredarerme Tasmanian Aboriginals are now collectively referred to as Pungenna Culture. On http://pungennaart.wikifoundry.com/page/bush+tucker, I found photographs of traditional foods. I should not have been surprised to see pigface as one of the foods – in earlier postings I have included photos of this gorgeous pink flowering plant which grew by the Derwent River.

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