Day 5. 9 km.
I slowly opened one eye, immediately followed by the other. Looking at the window, a smile formed on my face. The weather again has changed. Not that the temperature had risen but the rain was gone. This start of the new day was very promising. After having walked for about an hour we reached Du Cane hut. This hut is only to be used in emergencies. It was such a beautiful serene spot that we could not resist the temptation and had an early coffee break here, against our normal rite. Sitting on a tree stump in the shining sun, a nice cup of our beloved drink, this must be heaven.
The track changed to myrtle. Tree roots were popping up on the track. It made walking a bit harder and slowed us down. Halfway we came to a sidetrack which leads to the Hartnett Falls. We left our backpacks at the intersection were other walkers had left theirs and followed the track to the falls. It took about twenty minutes to get to the falls where I had a good opportunity to take some pictures.
Back to where we left our backpacks we had lunch and after having finished our ‘luxury banquet’ we followed the track to the Windy Ridge hut. About half an hour before we reached the hut, we met Chris (son of Ben), he was already been to the hut but his parents were missing (they split up at the sidetrack). He didn’t go to the falls but they did. On the way back they took a wrong track and would have been hopelessly lost if it wasn’t for the fact that they went the same way back to the falls where Chris found them.
The Windy Ridge hut was very cosy. Everyone was busy talking and some were playing cards. The hut was not that big and most walkers set up their tents. In the evening they came inside to say goodbye. For most of the walkers, this was the last hut before they reached the ‘end’ of the track. For them, the last day was a walk to Narcissus hut and then with the boat back to Lake Saint Clair. A few others would go to Pine Valley to stay there another night, to go with the boat the next day. Our plan was to walk past Narcissus hut and stay our last night in Echo Point hut to walk the last day.
Day 6. 14 km
After a clear and cold night (the sleeping bags were nice and warm though) we said goodbye to everyone and headed to Narcissus hut. It had been freezing and the timber boardwalk was slippery with ice. The path was easy going. A few hours later we reached the side track leading to Pine Valley. Here we took a rest and just before we wanted to leave we met another Dutch couple who made a daytrip starting from the other side. They left for the Overland track a week before us but the weather was very bad. They were confronted with storm, rain and very cold weather and returned the second day. Hadn’t we been lucky with the weather? We continued our walk and saw more day-trippers. Most of them very friendly but for one. he rushed past us as if he was on the run for something. He almost pushed me off the path, which wasn’t too wide and I don’t think he really enjoyed the beauty of the surroundings.
Around midday we reached Narcissus hut, had lunch and said goodbye (you keep doing that) to the people who waited for the boat. We followed the track to Echo Point hut. The map showed an easy walk. That’s the map. Reality was different. The first kilometre or so was easy walking over boardwalks but then, they disappeared and the track went from easy to hard. Because a lot of people wend back with the boat, surpassing this part, the track does not get the maintenance required (I believe).
Later in the afternoon we reached Echo Point hut and what a small world it is. The Dutchies we met in Pelion Hut were already here, together with another young fellow. The hut was very small. it could sleep 8 (it said). There was a logbook and someone wrote that overnight rats may pay a visit. There was a steel cupboard in which we stored our food so not to encourage the rodents. We lightened up the wood stove. The hut was beautifully situated on the edge of Lake Saint Clare and in the evening we saw a platypus frolicking in the water. From here also, the boat could be taken to the endpoint and the other couple went with the boat the next day while the lonely fellow went past us doing the last bit by foot.
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