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Getting up close with Gnomes and fungi in mushroom season in Tasmania

With many reserves and bushwalking tracks closed, the number of places available around Hobart is smaller and some have become rather so popular that physical distancing can be a bit of a challenge. I have been trying to stick to places where there is space to maintain distance or where few people go. Unfortunately, my list of these is quite small and have been going to the same places to stretch my legs and get a few photos. One should be grateful perhaps to some degree to have even this opportunity, but it had started to feel a bit monotonous. So, it was a nice surprise when my sister told me that the Pipeline Track at Fern Tree was open and so we arranged to meet and go for a walk with her kids, with a particular purpose of looking out for mushrooms which are right in season at this time of year in Tasmania.

I have been taking a lot of photos lately of dramatic skies and gorgeous sunsets, wide sweeping shots with interesting light. Or else I've been taking shots at night of city scapes, pathways wreath by arches of trees just starting to shed their golden autumn leaves. So this Fern Tree walk was a welcome chance to look more down towards the earth for the little details poking their heads above the earth.

The hunt for unusual and beautiful mushrooms yielded an absolute treasure trove of shapes, colours and sizes..

We met a few people walking, riding or jogging along the track, but on the whole it was pleasantly quiet and it was energising to take in some fresh mountain air and be surrounded by lush greenery. Fungi was not the only thing we spotted on the walk either, with several other quirky and magical features along the way including a wishing well, a Gnome home and a creepy little hut..

In the end, we didn't reach the end of the track, as little Sunny's legs and hands were getting a bit cold, and despite the teasing from her older brother, was determined to go back and claim her take away hot chocolate at the Fern Tree Tavern.

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