Mount Anne

PH Gell, 'Mt Anne from the Denison Plains', c 1850, (W.L. Crowther Library, SLT)

Mount Anne, 1423 metres, is the highest peak in the Southwest National Park. Surveyor George Frankland named it after his wife in 1835. Following his early death of pneumonia, his colleague James Calder confirmed this name.

The rugged summit of dolerite columns is a spectacular sight from any angle, whilst the karst system under its northern ridge includes some of the deepest limestone caves in Australia. Henry Judd reached the Mt Anne Plateau from the Huon Valley in 1880, and the magnificent lake on its southern side was named after him.

What Colonel Legge was to the Ben Lomond plateau, Arndell Lewis was to the Mount Anne plateau. Lewis wrote up the findings of three scientific expeditions there in the early 1920s in the Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society. But each of these expeditions, led by brothers LF and AV Giblin, were thwarted by bad weather from reaching the actual summit. The honour of the first ascent goes to Geoff Chapman and Walter Crookall, both of the newly-formed Hobart Walking Club, who climbed the peak on Christmas Day 1929.

This major side-trip along the Port Davey Track (cut by EA Marsden in 1898) from Maydena was reduced to a long day walk when the Hydro-Electric Commission opened the Scotts Peak Road in 1970.

John Cannon