Mount Field National Park

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Mount Field National Park is a national park in Tasmania, Australia, 64 km northwest of Hobart. The landscape ranges from eucalyptus temperate rainforest to alpine moorland, rising to 1,434 metres (4,705 ft) at the summit of Mount Field West.

Contents

History

Mount Field National Park was founded in 1916, making it, along with Freycinet National Park, Tasmania's oldest national park. The area around Russell Falls has been protected for its natural beauty since 1885, when it was set aside as Tasmania's first nature reserve.[2] The last known wild thylacine was captured in the region in 1933. The reserve was called "National Park" before 1946, but was officially renamed to its present name in 1947.[3]

Geology

During the Pleistocene period a snowfield covered the top of the Mount Field plateau which fed glaciers in the surrounding valleys.[4] A large, 12 km long glacier formed the broad river valley and the cirque walls above Lake Seal.[4] Twisted Tarn, Twilight Tarn and the tarns on the tarn shelf were formed by glacial scouring.[4] A glacier flowed south from the Rodway Range, forming lakes Belcher and Nelton, and north to form the Hayes Valley and Lake Hayes.[4]

In alpine areas podzolic, humus and leached soil is most common. The podzols often occur on deep periglacial solifluction deposits down to 450 m.[4] Alluvial floodplains have developed in the lower park on deposits of quaternary alluvium.[4]

Fauna

The park has good representation of much of native Tasmanian fauna including Wombat, Platypus, eastern barred bandicoot and the Tasmanian devil.

Accommodation and facilities

There is camping, with powered and unpowered sites at the entrance to the Park, as well as the Government-owned Lake Dobson cabins near the end of the access road within the Park. Several private ski/walking clubs have private huts, and a ski-lodge on the ski slopes has limited accommodation during the skiing season.

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