Sunday, February 19, 2012

Tasmanian Graveyards and the Huon Pine

The first graveyard we found was in Stanley, which is next to "The Nut" which is a big rock.   We stayed in a nice hotel (Stanley Hotel and Apartments) that was really one of the best nights sleeps we had in Tasmania.  Get Room 8 if available.  It was $70 when we showed up.  We walked around before deciding to stay in Stanley for the night.  We didn't go up The Nut.  We went to the base, and maintained a more or less constant elevation profile to the Stanley Cemetery.  We were reading "The Origin of Aids" (Pepin - great book) and it was an apt place for a read.  It drizzled and that was enough to convince us to stay in Stanley.  There are wooden grave-boards (headboards?) from a very long time ago in there.

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They grow Opium Poppies all around Tasmania.  Very progressive!  It is for making morphine.

Later in the trip, we found another graveyard at an accidental stop.  We had just passed through a confusing "intersection" and needed some GPS arbitration.  So I stopped at a little dirt off-shoot.  I pulled up next to some old large pines and said "huh, that's a gravestone."  And there were a lot of them.  All hiding in the scrub.  All very old.  A 4x4 track cutting between the graves.  We took it all in slowly, aware that both species of snake resident to Tasmania are deadly.

More wooden graves.  Amazingly old.  These are made from Huon Pine, which is obviously really tough wood.  One stand of these trees was found to be a single vegetative expansion over 10,500 years old.  Looks like cedar.

Below is a Google street view of our lucky find, so you can see it too if you go there.  It's called the Zeehan Cemetery.

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