Walls of Jerusalem National Park
Walls of Jerusalem National Park from the east 🔗
Most walks in Walls Of Jerusalem National Park start from the Fish River carpark, just off Mersey Forest Road, which runs along the east side of Lake Rowallan. However, Mersey Forest Road was damaged by floods in 2016, and had not been repaired by early 2017, so this walk was planned with the next most accessible entrance in mind: the Lake Fanny track, which approaches the park from the east. This alternative also has the advantage of being closer to Hobart by road if you're coming from the south.
While some of this walk follows the hardened track in the central Walls Of Jerusalem area, a lot of it involves following a route along some very poorly defined unofficial tracks in Bernes Valley. You'll need to be comfortable with off-track navigation in order to do this walk. Bring your gaiters - the Richea shrubs in particular are very spiky. One of the options includes a kilometre or two of scrub-bashing with no track of any kind.
To get to the start of the walk, turn off Highland Lakes Road on to Lake Augusta Road at Liawenee. There's a carpark two or three kilometres past Lake Augusta.
The walk starts from the carpark, and initially follows the Lake Fanny Track. You're probably better off walking around the south of Ada Lagoon, but you can also walk around the north side, cross a little bridge and meet the Lake Fanny track again by following the shore around. The track is very distinct to begin with, but becomes much less so the closer you get to Lake Fanny. We found a good campsite for three or four tents at Talleh Lagoon, about 8km from the carpark.
The most civilised start to day two would have been to backtrack a few hundred metres and take the track south towards Theresa Lagoon and the less-than-imaginatively named "Hut Five". However, we opted to scratch our off-track navigation itches (and limbs) by following the rest of the track to Lake Fanny, and then heading off through the scrub to the south-west (orange line on the map above). This took us over a ridge and down to the north-west end of Lake Sally. It was pretty slow going, but thankfully the densest scrub was on the downhill side. It's worth noting that we opted for the more civilised route on the way back.
From Lake Sally it's a matter of walking up the Bernes valley, past Lake Sonja, Lake Solveig and around the east side of Lake Ball. The track is often indistinct or absent, and some areas are boggy, but it's reasonably easy going.
From Lake Ball we headed north up the slope to Dixons Kingdom Hut. Our plan was to camp in the area around the hut, but after dark it became apparent that the local possums were going to be a real problem all night. Given that Wild Dog Creek was only a few kilometres away on a very good track, and that we had enough moonlight to comfortably walk by, we decided to move camp after dinner.
The moonlight walk ended up being a highlight of the trip. The track between Dixons Kingdom Hut and the Wild Dog Creek campsite took us through the spectacular centre of the park, with all its peaks and walls looming in the moonlight.
At Wild Dog Creek we set up camp, with a plan to spend the next couple of days doing day walks. The weather forecast indicated that we were probably in for some wet weather, so having a good base camp where we could wait out any bad weather seemed like a good idea too.
After three nights there we packed up and embarked on the return section of the loop, making camp again at Lake Adelaide.
From Lake Adelaide we followed a reasonable track back to lake Ball, and then retraced our steps back past Lake Solveig and Lake Sonja. We didn't much like the prospect of scrub-bashing back up the ridge towards Lake Fanny, so we continued past Lake Sally towards Hut Five, and then followed the track up past Powena Creek and Theresa Lagoon to camp at our initial campsite at Talleh Lagoon. The last day was a short walk out to the carpark.
Approaching the first campsite 🔗
First campsite 🔗
Lake Solveig 🔗
Weathered Pencil Pine branch 🔗
The ascent 🔗
Pencil Pine garden 🔗
Wild Dog Creek 🔗
Improving weather 🔗
Looking west 🔗
Looking east 🔗
Camping at Lake Adelaide 🔗
There's a nice dry campsite on a rise just west of the track as you approach Lake Adelaide from the north.
Lake Ball Hut 🔗
Completing the loop 🔗
Back at Lake Ball. This is where we headed off to the right to get to Dixons Kingdom Hut on day two
From here we retraced our route back to Talleh Lagoon, except that we omitted the scrub-bash over the ridge by continuing on towards Hut Five, then followed the Powena Creek track past Lake Theresa.