8th - 16th June 2016
".... photographers work not just for Tasmania but for a world in need of wildness . . . we . . . draw sustenance from the images that leap from the page, from the screen, full of unmediated life and longing."
This winter, join Len for a very special tour of the pristine Tarkine Wilderness in north-western Tasmania.
Coveted by conservationists and developers alike, the natural riches of the Tarkine have long been revered by nature-lovers and threatened by commercial interests.
On this luxury eight-day tour discover the virgin rainforest, lush valleys and rushing creeks that have been the subject of such controversy.
Photograph towering Antarctic myrtles and Huon pines up to 3000 years old. Explore forests of ferns and beech in Australia’s largest remaining temperate rainforest. Visit the historic town of Corinna and experience the windswept northwest coast.
Enjoy Len’s gentle, supportive style as you participate in informative discussions and impromptu lessons, and receive personalised help while shooting.
Places on the Winter 2015 tour are already filling, so book now to secure your spot.
8th - 16th June 2016
The term 'the Tarkine' describes an area of north-western Tasmania extending roughly from the Arthur River in the north to the Pieman River in the south and from the Murchison Highway in the East to the Southern Ocean in the West.
While on tour we will divide our time between two gateways to the Tarkine: Tall Timbers Hotel near Smithtown to the north and Corinna to the south. These locations allow us easy access to the rivers, rainforests and coastlines we will be photographing during the tour.
Fly to Launceston. Your air-conditioned vehicle will pick you up from the airport or town centre. We will depart Launceston at mid-day.
Your accommodation includes three nights at the luxurious four star rated Tall Timbers Queen Studio at Smithtown, where the unique and stylish accommodation is set out to take advantage of the stunning rural views. Tall Timbers is the perfect place to pamper yourself after a long day on your feet. This stylish hotel in a bushland setting is reminiscent of a country club, with comfortable, well-appointed rooms.
We then spend another three nights at Corinna Wildlife experience in your own queen sized self-contained luxury retreat situated on the banks of the Pieman River and boasting Tarkine rainforest views. After a day of exploration and shooting, enjoy the comforts of home with your own en-suite and private kitchenette or delight in a gorgeous boarded walk with flora and township interpretations, or a suite of other wilderness experiences.
For your final night of the tour, we will be staying at a beautiful heritage guest house in Burnie, where you will enjoy a sumptuous seafood banquet as you bid a fond farewell to your newfound photography friends.
Day 1: Pick up Launceston airport and drive to Smithtown for our first few nights at Tall Timbers Resort. En-route we will stop to photograph the coast, and for our first evenings sunset, we will photograph the sun dropping over the great Indian Ocean.
Day 2: We will photograph Milkshake Hills Forest Reserve, where gentle paths weave through button-grass fields and glades of Tree Ferns, which grow up to five metres tall. Afterwards, we will move to the coast for an afternoon and sunset shoot at Nelson Bay.
Day 3: Morning shoots in the rainforests of the Arthur River with locations subject to weather and the mood of the group and afternoon shoots on the rugged coast, including "the edge of the world" & Tasmania's most western point.
Day 4: We drive through the wilderness along the Western Explorer Road, traveling along a section of white ‘silica road’, surfaced with the tailings of a nearby silica mine. We will have the opportunity to shoot at several locations en-route and on arrival to Corrina we will be in our luxurious private cabins on the edge of the Pieman River.
Day 5: Shoots in and around the historic mining town of Corinna.
Day 6: We join the Arcadia II cruise* to explore the remote Tarkine Coast and the banks of the Pieman River.
Day 7: We visit the splendid Philosophers Falls and Waratah for two memorable shoots. We then stop overnight in Burnie and enjoy a lovely dinner overlooking the ocean.
Day 8: We head east towards Launceston, and stop off at Liffey Falls for our last shoot and your returned at Launceston for you late afternoon flight.
This itinerary is a guideline only and activities may be changed, altered or removed subject to weather conditions and the needs of the group.
A TYPICAL DAY
Days on tour are long and relaxed. On a typical day we will be up early for breakfast before our early morning photo shoot. This may be in time for sunrise or simply the soft morning light.
Once we arrive on location you will have plenty of time to arrange yourself, shoot, explore and receive individual guidance from Len. Morning tea in the field will keep us going until late morning when we return to our accommodation for lunch and a rest.
After lunch we will reconvene for a coaching session and a valuable opportunity to look through our images as a group.
In the afternoon, feeling refreshed after our rest, we will wander out to capture the evening light and sunset. We will return home for dinner, evening discussions and valuable group critique sessions.
All of the shoots are optional and locations are open to discussion based on the conditions and the flow of our group. Our itinerary will vary depending on the light and the group – when the light is perfect we might even pack our morning tea, afternoon tea and lunch and spend the whole day in the field.
WALKING AND WEATHER
This is a gentle trip, which requires a low level of fitness. Strolls along well-formed paths and boardwalks are a photographers delight, with stunning visual possibilities right on our doorstep.
The Tarkine is home to the largest temperate rainforest in Australia, so it follows that this region is wet. We will need to be prepared for regular rainfall and crisp temperatures between 4°C and 11°C.
When you book you will receive a detailed packing list to help you plan for the Tasmanian winter. Click here to see the packing list now.
POSSIBLE LOCATIONS AND SHOOTS
FOREST - The Tarkine Wilderness is renowned for its pristine rainforest and myrtle-beech forests. Turn your lens to gushing brooks, delicate lichen and five metre tall Tree Ferns at the Milkshake Hills Forest Reserve.
A flooded sump in the rainforest is a wonderland of bird life and aquatic creatures, and the Philosopher’s Falls is simply magnificent.
Wander among stands of sassafras and prehistoric trees, including Antarctic myrtle and Huon pines up to 3000 years old.
COASTAL - Along the western Tasmanian coast you will discover rugged shorelines and chains of unspoilt beaches. Photograph broad lagoons, coastal tea tree forests and seaside sunsets.
During the tour, join the Arcadia II* for a full day cruise to photograph the stunning coastal seascapes of the Southern Ocean from Pieman Heads. You can look forward to ancient logjams, indigenous middens, colourful granite boulders and swathes of kelp.
*Subject to availability and weather conditions. If the cruise is unavailable we will charter a small boat and spend a day exploring the banks of the Pieman River.
HISTORIC - The Tarkine region is rich with historical significance, both indigenous and western.
Visit petroglyphs on a remote beach from a time long lost. Estimated to be thousands of years old, these traces are thought to be from the traditional Tarkiners.
Walks around Corinna provide a welcome contrast to the wilds of the Tarkine, with many opportunities to photograph historic architecture and village scenes.
During the tour we will meet regularly as a group to review our work and learn together.
Discussion topics include composition, tone, line, colour theory, black and white, self-critique, studying master landscape photographers and technical camera and processing tips. Lesson topics are guided by the needs of the group.
You will also receive valuable feedback on your photographs from your group in tea-and-critique sessions. Often these insights help you take your photography to the next level.
We support local businesses and experience the best in local cuisine by dining in local restaurants for breakfast and dinner.
While staying at Tall Timbers hotel we will dine in the hotel bistro. In Corinna, choose from a range of delicious meals at the a la carte restaurant adjoined to our accommodation. Breakfasts at Corinna will be lovingly hand cooked by our accompanying host.
In the field we will bring delicious packed lunches.
We can cater to dietary needs such as gluten free and vegetarian, please let us know in advance.
We will meet in Launceston and travel to all locations in a comfortable minivan or 4WD vehicle.
WHAT TO BRING
There are a few key things that you will need to get the most out of the tour:
- Camera equipment
- Laptop or tablet with latest Adobe Lightroom software (recommended)
- Wet weather clothing
- Clothing for cold temperatures
- Travel and medical insurance + Ambulance cover for duration of tour. Click here for more information.
- Day pack/camera pack
The Tasmanian winter can be cold and wet, so it is important that you have the right gear to stay comfortable when conditions are tough.
Len Metcalf is a qualified and experienced trekking guide with 30 years of experience guiding groups to remote destinations. He knows what you need to keep yourself comfortable while photographing the harshest environments on earth. Click here to see his Tarkine Wilderness packing list now.
- All your accommodation
- All breakfasts, lunches and dinners plus nutritious snacks. Alcohol and extra coffees are not included but are available for purchase.
- All transport ex Launceston
- Your National Park fees
- Small groups limited to 6 participants
- Qualified, experienced wilderness guide, Len Metcalf
- One-on-one instruction and guidance from fine art photographer and veteran educator Len Metcalf
- Len’s unique and gentle teaching style, which supports you and helps you develop as an artist.
- Personalised itineraries: be involved in open, group decision-making throughout the tour. Learn how to select the best locations at the best times.
- Plenty of time to shoot at each location.
- Calm, relaxing atmosphere, encouraging engagement and connection with the landscape
- Participate in group lessons and critique sessions each evening so that you can apply new skills and techniques to your practice the next day
- Gain valuable insights into computer processing software that will make your photos sing
- Suitable for all levels from absolute beginners to professionals
- Miscellaneous drinks and alcoholic beverages
- Travel insurance
If you would like to find out more about the Tarkine and efforts to protect this wilderness, visit http://tarkine.org