Tag Archives: Pumphouse Point Hotel

The track to the Derwent Basin

I and the floating threads of spider web strands were the only occupants of the sometimes wider and sometimes narrower track from the Pumphouse Point locked gate onwards to the Derwent Basin.  The twists and turns of the tiny track made sure I had new vegetation and bush character to look at, on every moment of the walk.

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Native animals had passed along the path leaving evidence of their progress.  For example, the dragging of a small kangaroo tail is shown below.

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Between this track and the clear water of St Clair Lagoon, reedy wetlands extended large distances, so much so, that seeing the water was impossible.

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After winding within the bush, finally the track entered the back of the Pumphouse Point Hotel complex’s visitor carpark, with the reception building and one of the facility blocks nearby.

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No signage existed to direct me to the Derwent Basin weir from the Pumphouse Point complex, so I crossed a small bridge and took ‘pot luck’ along tracks which eventually allowed me to pass the area where the Derwent Basin meets Lake St Clair’s waters, and to continue onto the Derwent Basin Weir.

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Enjoy the crystal sharp birdsong in the bush on this short video.

Later I found a sign and followed the elevated blue metal track from which I could scan glimpses of the large expanse of Derwent Basin.

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On the southern side of the track, St Clair Lagoon filled the space. In the photos below you can see the bump on the horizon; that is Mount Charles to the north east of Lake King William which I had walked beside and around the day before I reached this idyllic spot.

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When I reached the tiny weir controlling the flow of water from the Derwent Basin into St Clair Lagoon, the sharp mid-morning sun sparkled intensely on the water. I was almost blinded by the light.

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What if the water leaving St Clair Lagoon Dam was not the source of the Derwent?

 

Different people hold views about the start and finish of places and the same is true for the Derwent River.  So, just in case, someone should say to me that the River’s source is at the weir where water flows from the Derwent Basin into St Clair Lagoon, or the source is where the water flows from the body of Lake St Clair into the Derwent Basin, I walked to both other locations to be sure I had arrived at ‘the source’.

From St Clair Lagoon Dam I returned to the Pumphouse Point road and continued towards Lake St Clair and the Hotel.  Trees flanked the walk.

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And I passed unwalkable wetlands.

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Suddenly one corner of spectacular Lake St Clair stretched before me, and I could see the outlier of the Pumphouse Point Hotel sitting crisply on the Lake, roughly marking the entrance of water to the Derwent Basin.

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As I walked towards the Point I fell in love with Mount Olympus standing high in all its grandeur. Zeus would be pleased.

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Gradually I closed in on the Point so that the white box appeared as a building.

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The entrance to the Hotel seemed barred to me.

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However to the right of the entrance a sign indicated a walking track would take me to the Weir at the southern end of the Derwent Basin.

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Again, anglers have been remembered.

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