Northwest Bay

Canoe Tas Inc

South East

North West Bay River

Mt Wellington Summit to the Pipeline Weir



Distance: 5.0 km.
Average Grade: 94 m/km.
Peak Grade: 120 m/km.
Difficulty: Grade 4-5.
Paddling Time: 3-5 hours.
Entry Point: Park just before the summit of Mt Wellington at (Grid ref EN 183 510) then walk about 500 m SW until the river is encountered as a cold alpine stream weaving through button grass.
Exit Point: At Wellington Falls (Grid ref. EN 150 478), portage via the walking track on the eastern bank, down to the pipeline weir. From here, the 9 km well graded pipeline track leads to Nieka (kayak trailers and mountain bikes being the means used to date).
Water Level: No guage but local rain is needed, 10 mm+ overnight on Mt Wellington. Todate there has only been one descent at very low water level, at higher levels this river would be considerably more difficult with extreme danger of being washed over the 70 m Wellington Falls.
Tasmap: 1:100 000 Derwent (Land Tenure Index Series).
General Description: The river starts as an alpine stream flowing through button grass until the tree-line is encountered and the river steepens dramatically. The river is continuous and technical with many drops up to 3 m and virtually no flat water. After about 1 km a 100 m stretch of log snags is encountered, after which the river steepens again with several larger drops before the final straight to the top of Wellington Falls. Pull out well before Wellington Falls as being washed over is certain death!. It is recommended that any party attempting this river should be very experienced, be equiped for wilderness paddling (although almost in sight of Hobart, much of this river can be above the snow-line with fickle weather) and have scouted the access and exit points (particularly Wellington Falls) before commencing. The final drop before the pipeline weir and the waterfall 150 m below the pipe bridge have been paddled though all other rapids below Wellington Falls have either been portaged or not attempted yet! This river is suited to creek boats!

Paul and Dave – Upper NWB