Drove along the East coast to the Bay of Fires (named for the red algae that grows on the rocks here) and were not disappointed by the scenery.
We then turned inland (stopping at a cheese farm on the way and seeing our first echidnas and a snake) as we drove nearer to the Cradle Mountain National Park (a world heritage area).
After a long day of driving, we stopped in the small town of Carrick (~1.5 hours from the park). We found a cute place to stay in a "converted stable" so based ourselves here for a few days. Being in the middle of farmland, we saw a wallaby, bunnies and kookaburras in the garden. A less welcome visitor was the massive spider in our room (tarantula size - no joke!) Not knowing whether or not it was poisonous, John doused the thing to death with bug spray (took a lot to do the job). Potential nerve damage aside, we had a very good sleep.
The next day was rainy, but it was our only time to do the Dove Lake walk. So, we braved some serious rain (and a trail that became a river) to see this spectacular landscape. It reminded us a lot of parts of the Milford trek in New Zealand. Very beautiful country, which we could only glimpse through the fog. Fortunately, by the end of our hike, it cleared temporarily so we could get a look at Cradle Mountain. We also did the shorter "enchanted walk" where we saw lots of ferns and evidence of wombats (their burrows and poop were everywhere).