10 Easy 4WD Tracks Close To Hobart That You Must Try!

Source: themercury.com.au

Do you love 4-wheel driving (4WDing)? It can be difficult to find some amazing tracks that are easy and close to Hobart. I know that I struggled a lot when it came to looking for easy tracks when I was on holiday there. But not to worry, I have got you covered!

These tracks provide drives that range from easy to medium, so if you have a few hours or a week there is something for everyone’s 4wd driving abilities ranging from varying landscapes of mountain drives, beach, and river-crossings. So, if you’re just not sure in which direction to head off, this guide of local favourites is for you.

Whether you are a newbie wanting to learn some new skills or an avid off-roader looking for a cruisey escape, you are bound to find something to enjoy in this list. Tasmania has some of the most beautiful scenery to offer, from the rugged highlands to the Rainforest, there is a variety of tracks for every driver.

Here is a list of 10 easy tracks close to Hobart:

  1. Fortescue Bay
  2. Bruny Island
  3. Bushy Lagoon
  4. Long Marsh Dam
  5. Siamese Water Race Track
  6. Swanston Track
  7. Arve Road to Hartz Mountains National Park and Tahune Forest Reserve
  8. Tasman Peninsula
  9. Mount William National Park
  10. Wielangta Forest Drive

Before you continue with your adventure, if you’re new to 4wd and offroading or are not sure what equipment to take out with you on your adventures, make sure to check out the Off Road Aussies Essential 4×4 Equipment List where I have taken the time to review and recommend the equipment I use. If you kit yourself out correctly, you will be able to tackle everything that your new adventures will throw at you.

Fortescue Bay

Credit to freetworoam.com

Distance: 100km

Time: 1hr 30mins

Difficulty: Easy

Track Length: 12km

Track Time: 30mins

Terrain: Gravel, Sand

Permit Required

Park Entry Fees

Camping Fees Apply

When it comes to easy 4WD tracks close to Hobart, Fortescue Bay is a great choice. This trek is only 12km and allows you to develop your off-roading skills on gravel and sand, otherwise just take a nice easy cruise with the family. Fortescue Bay is part of the OLDEST working forestry areas and it is a great chance to see little part of history. Incredibly popular during Summer months for a day out, this picturesque destination allows you to develop your skills or just enjoy a drive.

A variety of walking tracks, camping areas, picnic facilities and some amazing fishing opportunities you are bound to spot some of the beautiful wildlife Tasmania has to offer. Perfect for a day out with family and friends there are many attractions for everyone to enjoy.

The attractions you can spot at in the area include:

  • Eaglehawk Neck Lookout
  • Port Arthur
  • Waterfall Bay (located at Eaglehawk Neck Lookout)

It is a destination recommended for a day trip to a weekend stay.

Access to Fortescue Bay Track

  • Leave Arthur Highway approximately 3km South from Nubeena Road turn off
  • Joiners Link Road turns into Coronation Road and then into Fortescue Bay Road 

You can learn more about Fortescue Bay by visiting this website here

Bruny Island

Credit to tasmanianartsguide.com.au

Distance: 83km

Time: 2hrs (Ferry Crossing included)

Difficulty: Easy-Medium (dependent on rainfall)

Track Length: Varies

Track Time: Varies

Terrain: Beach, Sand, Forest

Permit Required

Park Entry Fees

Bruny Island offers many opportunities when it comes to easy 4WD tracks. It is a destination for those who just want to escape to nature! Amazing for developing your sand driving skills along the long white beaches that make up this amazing coastline. Not only that but you can have a go at the forest tracks in the area as well! You don’t just have to spend your time in your vehicle as there is a variety of activities available, these include:

  • Camping
  • Bush walking
  • Photography
  • Fishing
  • Surfing
  • Diving
  • Boating
  • Eco boat cruises

It also includes many attractions which make it great for a family day! These attractions include:

  • Historic areas
  • Wildlife
  • Cap Bruny Lighthouse
  • Labillardiere Peninsula walking track

Some things to remember:

  • If you are going to take your hand at beach driving there is a 40km speed limit.
  • Driving along the beach is only permitted for boat launching and retrieval, as well as gaining access to the Cloudy Campsite.
  • Stay below the high tide mark so you don’t disturb the wildlife and vegetation that Tasmania has done so well to preserve.
  • Remember travel along the beach at low tide so you don’t get caught washing away!

This island will simply engulf you into nature and give you a taste of Australian beauty.

To Access:

  • 40km South of Hobart at Ketterbug a passenger and vehicle ferry depart regularly
  • You will arrive at Roberts Point on Bruny Island
  • Drive around 9km through state forest along the Coolangatta Road from Adventure Bay to Lunawanna is great for bush scenery and access to a walking track to the trig station on Mt. Mangana
  • 18km drive is from adventure bay via Lockleys and Staffords Road to the Cloudy Bay Road north of the beach 

You can learn more about Bruny Island by visiting this website here

Brushy Lagoon

Credit to Wikimedia Commons

Distance: 240km

Time: 3hrs

Difficulty: Easy-Medium (dependent on rainfall)

Track Length: Less than 20km

Track Time: 1hr

Terrain: Bush, Gravel, Mud

Permit Required

Park Entry Fees

Brushy Lagoon is your destination if you are looking for a cruise through the bush, on gravel, and muddy tracks. You need to be extremely careful at this location after rainfall. Due to the large amounts of clay it can become extremely slippery and muddy! Great for learning, but it is best to have another vehicle with you in case recovery is required. This destination is perfect for learning to feel what your vehicle is doing while you are driving increasing your instincts!

You can take a break from tackling the tracks and go for a fish! The lagoon is rather popular for all year round fishing. This is mainly due to that fact that it is stocked regularly to maintain a healthy population, so you are bound to hook something on your line. If fishing isn’t much to your liking there is a number to other activities from wildlife watching to bush walking. There are also camping and toilet facilities if you wish to stay the night or a weekend and enjoy your escape to nature.

To Access:

  • 20km north Westbury via B72 and C714
  • From Biralee Road westbound through Egmont Reserve, western shore of Brushy Lagoon to Brushy Lagoon Dam, Brushy Road, Dolerite Road and Frankford Road ending at T-junction with Bass Highway.

You can learn more about Brushy Lagoon by visiting this website here

Long Marsh Dam

Credit to geocaching.com

Distance: 140km

Time: 2hrs 40mins

Difficulty: Easy-Medium

Track Length: 5km (Last 1.2km Medium Difficulty)

Track Time: 1hr

Terrain: muddy, uneven, marshlands

Park Entry Fees

Long Marsh Dam is full of history and an easy cruise. An amazing option for testing your skills and for newbies to develop their potential. The last 1.2km of the track does increase slightly in difficulty due to the uneven terrain. Perfect for developing your skills to scout and plan your routes, this is essential when you take on some harder tracks. If you are a new 4 wheel driver it is best to have a friend in another vehicle just in case.

This project was never finished as the landowners planned to use convict labour but refused to pay them – so the convicts walked off the job. Apart from the rich history that dates back to the 1940’s there is a very rewarding walk into Long Marsh Dam – it isn’t easy so be prepared for a little perspiration.

Long Marsh Dam and convict probation station are located on the upper Macquarie River approximately 13km south of Lake Leake and north of Tooms Lake.

There is the option of camping or staying the night if you wish – just remember to take all your rubbish and waste with you as Tasmania has done so well to preserve their natural beauty.

You can learn more about Long Marsh Dam by visiting this website here

Siamese Water Track

Credit to 4wdtasmania.com

Distance (Hobart to St Helen’s): 250km

Time: 3hrs

Difficulty: Easy-Medium

Track Length: 11km

Track Time: 45mins

Terrain: Water crossing, rocky, muddy

The Siamese Water Race Track has a lot to offer when it comes to navigation and terrain. Perfect for developing your off-road driving skills and learning your capabilities. The tracks are often overgrown and can be difficult to find as they are poorly marked so you should take care when traveling. This destination is best or an overnighter, a weekend away or longer.

Fair warning! The Siamese Water Race Track is an amazing experience but if you don’t want your vehicle getting scratched and scuffed up, you should probably avoid it. But let’s be honest – you wouldn’t be here if you didn’t want to explore Tasmania’s wild side. If you are a novice you should avoid this destination or bring someone experienced with you after rainfall as it becomes increasingly harder.

Did You Know?

The Siamese Water Race Track gets its name as it used to carry water from the South George River near St. Column Falls on the east coast of Tasmania. To the Argonaut Tin Mine in the St. Helen’s district of Tasmania, that is around 42km!

To access:

  • From St. Helen’s, turn off the highway when heading south approximately 3km from St. Helen’s

Swanston Track

Credit to Youtube.com

Distance: 100km

Time: 1hr 20mins

Difficulty: Easy-Medium (Difficult sections)

Track Length: 33km

Track Time: 2-3hrs

Terrain: Rocky, Muddy

The Swanston Track. This drive is perfect if you want to experience descents and rocky terrain, but you should have another vehicle with you. Make it an adventure for you and your mates to tackle. Take your time and enjoy the thrill of uneven, rocky surfaces and descent of this climb.

Along the journey on this track is is necessary to cross a rather steep ford – so be sure you have the capabilities to handle it and have a friend or two with you! There are also gates that you need to open and of course close on your way through.

TIP! This track is already on the easy-medium scale of difficulty, so unless you are experienced and an avid 4WD it is best to avoid after rainfall.

Make sure you have recovery gear and an understanding of recovery techniques. Never forget to walk out and plan your path.

To access:

  • From Runnymede north of the small rural township of Sorell on Tasman highway to Little Swansport on the east coast of Tasmania
  • Start by turning off Tasman highway at Woodsdale located between Sorell and Orford

Arve Road to Hartz Mountains National Park and Tahune Forest Reserve

Credit to tailoredtasmania.rezdy.com

Distance (Hobart to Hartz National Park): 80km

Time: 1hr 20mins

Difficulty: Easy

Track Length: Varies

Track Time: Varies

Terrain: Gravel, Forests, Rocky

Park Entry Fees

Only a day’s drive from Hobart, this exploration is perfect for a day out with the family. If you want to experience a little variety in your drive this is a good one for you. From testing your driving on gravel, through forests and uneven rocky landscape, you are in for an easy cruise without the boredom. It is even great for an avid off roader just to hone in on their skills.

The Hartz Mountains National Park and the Tahune Forest has a lot to offer. Places of interest to explore can include:

  • Waratah Lookout (10km along the Hartz Road)
  • Walking Tracks to Hartz Peak and other scenic areas
  • Heritage Center
  • Creeks
  • Wildlife
  • The Big Tree
  • Air Walk
  • Fishing
  • Picnic and Camping Facility 

You can learn more about Hartz Mountains National Park by visiting this website here

Tasman Peninsula

Credit to goliveyoung.com

Distance: 95km

Time: 1hr 30mins

Difficulty: Easy

Track Length: Varies

Track Time: Varies

Terrain: River, Rock, Sand, Gravel

Park Entry Fees

The Tasman Peninsula has a variety of terrain to offer that is easy to increase your skill level or just go for a nice drive. There are many tracks you can choose from that range in lengths and times for all occasions. If you want a day out full of 4 wheel driving and other activities, this spot is the one you are after.

You can also visit other attractions such as:

  • The Blowhole
  • The Tasman Arch
  • Devil’s Kitchen
  • Waterfall Bay
  • Coal Mines (Historic Site)
  • Lime Bay (4km North – Camping facilities if you want to make it an overnight or weekend away)

Depending on the area you want to explore you may need to pay entry fees as it could be part of the Tasman National Park.

If you are up for an interesting detour:

  • When you are heading towards Port Arthur take a left turn just out of Eaglehawk Neck onto Pirates Road.
  • This will give you the Taranna Forest Drive which will take you back to the highway just south of Taranna township.

You can learn more about the Tasman Peninsula by visiting this website here

Mount William National Park

Credit to tripadvisor.com.au

Distance: 330km

Time: 4hrs 30mins

Difficulty: Easy-Medium

Track Length: Varies

Track Time: Varies

Terrain: Bush, Gravel, Rocky, Clay

Park Entry Fees

Mount William National Park is a great option for a weekend away. There are a variety of tracks you can move through from the easy cruisey drives to the ones that require a little more skill. You have options of scoping out uneven rocky surfaces, gravelly and water running creeks. This is an amazing destination if you are hoping to develop your skills for a verity of terrain and varying skill levels. Please remember to take your time and don’t push yourself too much, you don’t want to end up in a sticky situation!

If you decide to make a weekend of it and bring along the family you don’t just have to drive around. There is a variety of bush walks you can take part in and an abundance of wildlife to spot, especially at night! You also have an opportunity of fishing, boating and camping at Stumpy’s Bay.

To access:

  • Signs from Gladstone are very simple to follow.
  • Take Browns Bridge/ Eddystone Road and turn North onto Musselroe Road.
  • After crossing Browns Bridge it is approximately 9km to the park entrance.
  • Park fees are required and you can pick up a map so you don’t get lost on your adventure!

You can learn more about the Mount William National Park by visiting this website here.

Wielangta Forest Drive

Credit to themercury.com.au

Distance: 55km

Time: 45mins

Difficulty: Easy

Track Length: 20km

Track Time: 1hr

Terrain: Mud, Rock, Gravel

Wielangta Forest Drive is a scenic route that allows you to develop your skills gravel roads, sand and water crossings. Some of the roads are in poor condition so remember to take care. This is a great time to practice your scouting skills and creating a habit of walking your paths prior to driving them to prevent any accidents.

Further south on this route you may need to take extra caution and drive to the conditions if it is wet, slippery or if there has been recent rainfall. Being aware is one of the best methods of preventing accidents.

In the area there are other attractions that include:

  • Picnic Camping Grounds
  • Lookout
  • Scenic Walks

Something to consider!

This route isn’t marked on all maps, however it is signposted at both ends so keep an eye out if you intend on taking this adventure.

You can learn more about the Wielangta Forest Drive by visiting this website here.

Things to Remember

  • Stick to marked tracks.
  • Remove all rubbish and waste.
  • Never damage the native vegetation.
  • Ensure you have all the required gear, including safety and recovery equipment.
  • Be considerate and respectful of others.

Related Question

What are some hard tracks?

You should take a look at the following favourites:

  • Balfour Track
  • Mount Huxley Track
  • Oonah Hill Track

Remember your safety gear, and if you don’t have the required knowledge and skill set to take these tracks on, it is a good idea to avoid them.

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