Drawn by its mysterious history and wild and rugged shores, the remote and little-known Australian island of Tasmania proved to be perfect coastline for us to explore by kayak, stopping along the 600-mile route to visit with fishermen and historians, sailors and aboriginals.
We began our exploration in the southwest corner of the island, at Port Davey, where the weather arrives directly from Antarctica. Sparsely populated, by a solitary tin mining family and the occasional fishermen seeking cray and sharks, these were the wildest seas we met. Turning the southeast corner at Recherche Bay, we headed north – passing the appropriately named Adventure Bay – towards the capital city of Hobart. We rounded the magnificent Tasman Peninsula before heading up the northeast coastline and out to Flinders Island, where few visitors venture, home to mysteries of Tasmania’s aboriginal history and millions of seabirds.
Whether crayfishing with trawler men, diving for abalone, or paddling long crossings, our month in Tasmania delivered similar revelations we’ve experienced on the previous Oceans 8 expeditions: adventure mixed with discovery! Given that it was summer down south, and its latitude – equivalent to southern Patagonia – we often saw four seasons in one day, from waking with a light covering of snow on the ground in the morning to ending the afternoon beached under a warming sun.
Produced, Written & Directed by JON BOWERMASTER
Jon Bowermaster, Alex Nicks, Lelia Meffre, Keith Fialcowitz, Travis Holmes.
Supported by the NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Expeditions Council
This ongoing project from writer and adventurer Jon Bowermaster includes a series of expeditions to explore the world’s oceans from the seat of a sea kayak. Used as both transportation and as floating ambassadors, sea kayaks allow Jon and his teams – comprised of some of the world’s best photographers, filmmakers, scientists and navigators – to reach corners of the world rarely seen. The goal of each expedition is adventure and education through exploration of local cultures, histories, environmental issues and the future of these varied regions. Supported by the National Geographic Expeditions Council, the expeditions have taken Jon to the heart of the Aleutian Islands, through the Tuamotu Atolls in French Polynesia, across the high plains of Bolivia, Chile and Argentina, up the wild coastline of Gabon in West Africa, along Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast, and around the rugged shores of the Australian island of Tasmania.