I feel I should pause at this point and review some of the logistics of this trip:
When we got in the car at the airport in Launceston, I took the shotgun seat next to Steffen and Ben took the back seat behind him. Of course, Jake sat next to Ben behind me when he boarded. We stayed in the same seats the entire time. The back of the stationwagon was filled to the brim with our backpacks, camping gear, cooking equipment (including a propane tank and pots), and cooler.
Breakfast and lunch were usually on our own, meaning each person would eat whatever they had available or purchased. Each of us kept a loaf of bread around, and we generally shared the peanut butter, jam and other spreads already available. Later, we pooled our money into a food kitty and used it to by muesli and milk for breakfast and supplies for dinner.
I would typically be the first one up in the morning, and would begin packing up my tent. Ben, Steffen and finally Jake would get up later and start to get ready. Right before we left the site, we would shovel some food into our mouths out of the back of the wagon.
Around 6 o’clock, we would make sure we had our dinner supplies and start looking for a campsite (or hostel, more on that later though). On the way, we would stop at a bottle shop and pick up a case of beer (say “slab”). We took turns in buying the slab each night. At the campsite, we would survey the area, set up our tents, check out any nearby beaches, crack open the beers and start cooking. Dinner was almost always pasta, some kind of sauce and tuna. We looked forward to Steffen’s concotion of pasta with ham, eggs and onions (definitely more on that later).
On the drive to wherever we would go each day, Ben, Jake and I would flip through our guidebooks to find out what, if any, were the sights in the area. If anyone read something interesting, saw a pretty picture or heard a good story from another backpacker, we’d go there. Visitors centers would also help in identifying the must-see sights and talking to random locals told us what to avoid and what to see. Before we left the mainland, we knew we had to see the Cradle Mountains, Hobart and Port Arthur. Everything else would be spontaneous.
The general idea was to make our way around Tasmania like a clock, starting in Launcestion, then heading East, then down the coast to Port Arthur, past Hobart into the Western mountain ranges, then to the Northwest and finally Devonport, where Steffen would catch the ferry back.