24-Jun-2001 -- A weekend away at a friend's holiday house on Tasmania's east coast provided the opportunity for another confluence hunt. I'd already bought a detailed map and roughly located 42 South 148 East as being a couple of kilometers walk from the nearest road through bush.
On the Friday afternoon on the way up we took a short detour to visit the area. My wife, who hasnt exactly caught confluence fever, was eventually convinced that a short stroll in the bush would do us all good after the long drive. We climbed a gate and followed a rough track heading in the right direction through apparently disused gravel quarries. The track branched several times so the GPS was handy for recording the route we had taken. My seven year old son Rowan, an experienced confluence seeker from 43S 147E, helped with the navigation, while my four year old daughter Ella was just happy to be out of the car.
We reached the edge of the quarried area where stunted eucalypt trees growing on the gravel changed to less disturbed natural woodland. With daylight fading I scouted ahead another couple of hundred meters and got to within 800 meters of the confluence. The route ahead was down a ridge through light bush and the only remaining obstacle was a creek or small river that the map showed to be just before the confluence.
On Sunday morning we headed back home and despite the deteriorating weather I tried again while the others waited patiently in the car. This time I jogged through the quarry and down the ridge, more or less blindly trusting in the GPS to get me there and back. For the last hundred or so meters some thicker scrub slowed progress. A couple of startled wallabies hopped away.
The confluence turned out to be in a small clearing just before the creek. Many small dead trees indicated a bushfire had passed through the area some years before. With rain starting to fall I turned back, again just following the GPS arrow and not using a map or compass. I arrived back at the car just as heavy rain was falling and the already strong winds reached gale force.