Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls

Moina / Cradle Mountain, Tasmania, Australia

About Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls


Hiking Distance: 5km loop (both falls)
Suggested Time: 3.5 hours (both falls)

Date first visited: 2006-11-26
Date last visited: 2017-12-01

Waterfall Latitude: -41.52493
Waterfall Longitude: 146.08254

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Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls were a pair of attractive waterfalls that we combined into a single excursion that began and ended at the Lemonthyme Lodge Wilderness Retreat.

Although each waterfall could have been done individually as separate excursions, we decided to visit both in one slightly longer but non-trivial hike.

Lemonthyme_17_141_11302017 - Bridal Veil Falls
Bridal Veil Falls

After all, it didn’t make sense for us to make two trips to this fairly less-traveled part of Tasmania.

In any case, both waterfalls were quite different in shape and character.

Bridal Veil Falls (pictured above) had a taller (about 20m) and potentially wider drop (depending on the volume of Bull Creek) while 15m Champagne Falls (pictured further below) had a mossy and more rounded segmented appearance.

In terms of effort, each waterfall was about the same distance from the Lemonthyme Lodge (said to be 1 hour 45 minutes return walk according to the signage).

Lemonthyme_17_057_11302017 - Champagne Falls
Champagne Falls

However, given the very steep hill we had to climb at the very start of the track, it didn’t make a whole lot of sense to do both waterfalls as two separate hikes.

So as mentioned before, we combined the two hikes as a slightly longer loop hike.

Ordinarily, this steep track was very narrow and quite slippery.

The following trail description is based on this slightly longer looping route.

Trail Description – hiking to Champagne Falls

Lemonthyme_17_006_11302017 - The track to Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls initially followed this paved uphill road before reaching an unsealed 4wd road that climbed even more steeply
The track to Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls initially followed this paved uphill road before reaching an unsealed 4wd road that climbed even more steeply

From the day use car park (see directions below), we walked up an initially paved road that went between some cabins as well as the former location of the manager’s residence.

By the way, the Lemonthyme Lodge was now called the Lemonthyme Wilderness Retreat as of our latest visit in December 2017.

Anyways, the pavement then started to end as the walk continued up a steep 4wd track.

This was a very relentless climb that took the better part of at least the first 1.5km.

Lemonthyme_17_010_11302017 - Fork in the climbing Bull Creek Road en route to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls where the turnoff on the left went to some kind of tower
Fork in the climbing Bull Creek Road en route to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls where the turnoff on the left went to some kind of tower

Along the way up there was some kind of tower (possibly a cell tower).

At around 850m from the day use car park was a picnic table that I supposed represented the lookout referred to at the trailhead signage.

This vista offered us a chance to catch our breaths and take some photos before continuing on during our first visit.

Unfortunately on our second visit, this lookout appeared more overgrown so the vistas weren’t as impressive.

Lemonthyme_003_11252006 - This was the attractive view from the lookout near the start of the hike at the Lemonthyme Lodge from back in late November 2006. This view was mostly overgrown when we came back 11 years later
This was the attractive view from the lookout near the start of the hike at the Lemonthyme Lodge from back in late November 2006. This view was mostly overgrown when we came back 11 years later

Next, the track continued to climb briefly for another 400m before it finally started to reach the apex and level out somewhat.

We didn’t pursue a fork that continued climbing on our left though a barricade and lack of signage suggested that it wasn’t worth pursuing anyways for hikers.

Shortly after the apex, we then reached a signed fork in the road, where the track on our right descended steeply into the forest towards Champagne Falls.

So we went right and took this path to embark on the looping part of the hike.

Lemonthyme_17_029_11302017 - Trail junction where the narrow path on the right descended steeply towards Champagne Falls while the wider road on the left continued towards Bridal Veil Falls
Trail junction where the narrow path on the right descended steeply towards Champagne Falls while the wider road on the left continued towards Bridal Veil Falls

It trampled through lots of low-lying ferns while weaving in between mossy myrtle trees.

Signage at the start of this descent recommended against doing this track under wet conditions (which was the case when I did this hike the second time in 2017).

Indeed, there were definitely a few spots where the the ground gave way and caused me to slip (without falling thankfully).

The steep track was aided by orange tape tied to some of the trees to help aid in navigation.

Lemonthyme_17_047_11302017 - Part of the steep and slippery-when-wet descent from the 4wd road to the Champagne Falls
Part of the steep and slippery-when-wet descent from the 4wd road to the Champagne Falls

Eventually, the track followed along some narrow ledges with exposed tree roots.

It went by an easy-to-miss junction for the Bridal Veil Falls connecting track (which we’ll get back to later) on its way down ultimately to the Champagne Falls.

While it was awkward at best to view the waterfall from the signpost identifying the waterfall, I managed to carefully scramble my way down to Bull Creek for a more frontal view of the waterfall.

In my mind, it might have been overwhelming to see from this close (see second picture at the top of this page).

Lemonthyme_17_091_11302017 - Obstructed but contextual view of Champagne Falls flanked by dark cliffs
Obstructed but contextual view of Champagne Falls flanked by dark cliffs

So in addition to the views from within the slippery rocks of the creek, I also managed to find an outcrop a short distance downstream.

From there, I was able to look back at a more contextual (albeit overgrown) look at Champagne Falls flanked by interesting dark cliffs.

Trail Description – hiking from Champagne Falls to Bridal Veil Falls

Once I had my fill of Champagne Falls, I then went back up the steep track to the signed junction.

I definitely had to fight the temptation to take one of the false tracks along the cliff walls.

Lemonthyme_17_096_11302017 - Ascending to the connecting trail to Bridal Veil Falls after having visited Champagne Falls
Ascending to the connecting trail to Bridal Veil Falls after having visited Champagne Falls

Once on the correct connecting track, we then followed along a fern-flanked path with some stepping stones and boardwalks.

There were also other numbered signposts along the way.

For the next kilometre, the connecting track passed through a pretty dense yet serene stretch of forest.

It would eventually cross the Bull Creek then undulate along the northern banks of the creek passing by some very minor cascades en route.

Lemonthyme_17_113_11302017 - The connecting track between Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls had numbered signposts, which also helped act as trail markers given how easy it was to lose the trail here
The connecting track between Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls had numbered signposts, which also helped act as trail markers given how easy it was to lose the trail here

The track would ultimately arrive at another bridge over Bull Creek right in front of the Bridal Veil Falls.

When we first came here in late November 2006, the bridge was merely a one-sided log.

However, on a return trip 11 years later, it was a more legitimate bridge with handrails on both sides.

Depending on the flow on Bull Creek, Bridal Veil Falls may contain several almost-merging segments (like when I saw it in December 2017).

Lemonthyme_032_jx_11252006 - Looking towards Bridal Veil Falls when we first saw it in late November 2006
Looking towards Bridal Veil Falls when we first saw it in late November 2006

Or, it may only contain a handful of skinnier segments like when we saw it in November 2006.

Trail Description – finishing the loop hike from Bridal Veil Falls back to the Lemonthyme Lodge

After getting our nice frontal views of Bridal Veil Falls from the bridge, we then climbed up steps that led us back up to the 4wd track that we had forsaken earlier.

At this point, it was a predominantly downhill hike on the much wider and more open 4wd track.

It eventually took us past the Champagne Falls Track junction and then to the familiar picnic area as the road descended even more steeply.

The temptation was great to run all the way down the road to the car park.

Lemonthyme_17_177_11302017 - Returning along the 4wd road before it made its very steep descent back to the Lemonthyme complex
Returning along the 4wd road before it made its very steep descent back to the Lemonthyme complex

However, the presence of rocks and the likelihood of things falling out of pockets tempered that desire.

Ultimately, it took us around 2.5 hours to do the entire excursion though I believe spending 3 hours would make for a more leisurely visit.

Authorities

Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls reside at the Lemonthyme Wilderness Retreat near the town of Moina, Tasmania. It is administered by the Kentish Council. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website or Facebook page.

Lemonthyme_17_005_11302017 - Walking up the paved road past some of the cabins belonging to the Lemonthyme Wilderness Retreat during my December 2017 visit
Lemonthyme_17_009_11302017 - The unsealed 4wd track definitely made a steeper incline than earlier on before the gate at the Lemonthyme complex during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_016_11302017 - Continuing the relentlessly steep climb on the 4wd Bull Creek Rd towards Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls in December 2017
Lemonthyme_17_017_11302017 - Although I didn't even go about 1km at this point, it felt a lot longer than that thanks to the relentlessly steep climb to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls in December 2017
Lemonthyme_17_022_11302017 - This was the same picnic table and lookout en route to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls 11 years later.  Notice how much more overgrown it was in December 2017
Lemonthyme_17_023_11302017 - Obstructed views at the lookout along the Bull Creek Road as a result of the overgrowth during my December 2017 visit
Lemonthyme_17_024_11302017 - This was as much of the scenery that I could see from the lookout during my December 2017 visit to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls
Lemonthyme_17_028_11302017 - Near the apex of the initial climb from the Lemonthyme Retreat, I passed by this fork where I kept right onto the Bull Creek Rd en route to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_032_11302017 - On the steep and muddy descent to Champagne Falls as I was trying to follow the pink and orange tapes strapped to some of the mossy trees during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_037_11302017 - Looking up at some of the trees growing alongside the steep descent to Champagne Falls during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_044_11302017 - Lots of orange tape at this easy-to-miss trail junction where I kept straight to continue the descent to Champagne Falls during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_045_11302017 - The narrow track descending to Champagne Falls can be quite difficult to follow with all the overgrowth, but fortunately, there were signs like this put in the most strategic spots to keep me on track during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_049_11302017 - Deep into the descent to Champagne Falls on my December 2017 hike, the track followed some cliff ledges with exposed tree roots
Lemonthyme_17_053_11302017 - Finally approaching Champagne Falls and its numbered signpost during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_072_11302017 - Awkward closeup look at the fairly high-flowing Champagne Falls right from its rocky base during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_094_11302017 - On my way up to find the connecting track to the Bridal Veil Falls, I had to avoid the temptation of taking this false path behind a signpost that appeared to be missing its numerical sign during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_103_11302017 - Tree stump steps on the way to Bull Creek during the interlude between Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls on my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_105_11302017 - Signpost and bridge traversing Bull Creek on the connector trail to Bridal Veil Falls during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_106_11302017 - Looking along Bull Creek from the bridge en route to Bridal Veil Falls during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_118_11302017 - Passing by some small cascades on Bull Creek en route to Bridal Veil Falls during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_121_11302017 - The connector track undulated through more dense rainforest terrain en route to Bridal Veil Falls during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_125_11302017 - This part of the connector track between Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls might have been a re-route from a section that might have eroded or gotten buried by a landslide as seen during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_136_11302017 - Finally making it to the Bridal Veil Falls on my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_147_11302017 - Portrait view of Bridal Veil Falls in nice flow during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_165_11302017 - Another broad look at the Bridal Veil Falls during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_171_11302017 - The signpost at the 4wd road for Bridal Veil Falls after having made it back up to the Bull Creek Road during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_174_11302017 - Now walking along the Bull Creek Road after having visited Bridal Veil Falls in December 2017
Lemonthyme_17_176_11302017 - The 4wd road walk wasn't all downhill on the return hike from Bridal Veil Falls as this was perhaps the lone climb during my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_17_180_11302017 - Finally back at the pavement and the Lemonthyme Wilderness Retreat to end my December 2017 hike
Lemonthyme_001_jx_11252006 - Signs telling us where to go (and for how long) to see the Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls as well as the lookout during our November 2006 visit
Lemonthyme_001_11252006 - Julie walking up past the manager's residence to start the Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls hike back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_002_jx_11252006 - Going past the gate and climbing up the 4wd Bull Creek Road en route to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls during our late November 2006 hike
Lemonthyme_002_11252006 - Right off the bat, the initial climb to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls made us sweat in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_007_11252006 - The picnic table and lookout about 800m up the initial ascent to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls as seen in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_008_jx_11252006 - That's me following the shallower path descending from the 4wd road en route to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls from back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_009_jx_11252006 - Evaluating which way to go. Keeping left on the Bull Creek Road would go straight to Bridal Veil Falls, but the descending path on the right went to Champagne Falls. This was how the junction looked back in November 2006
Lemonthyme_012_jx_11252006 - Sign passing by a myrtle tree during our descent to Champagne Falls on our late November 2006 visit
Lemonthyme_013_jx_11252006 - Signpost identifying the yellow tailed black cockatoo tree during our descent to Champagne Falls in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_016_jx_11252006 - Passing by one of many signposts keyed to a paper guide we were carrying around on our first visit to Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_018_jx_11252006 - Signpost fronting the Champagne Falls as seen back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_020_11252006 - Looking up at the Champagne Falls as seen in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_024_11252006 - Our first look at Champagne Falls from back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_020_jx_11252006 - Closer look right up at the Champagne Falls as seen during our late November 2006 visit
Lemonthyme_031_11252006 - A more front-and-center look at Champagne Falls after a short scramble past some of the initial mossy boulders back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_023_jx_11252006 - We spotted this unusual plant on the way to Bridal Veil Falls (it turns out that this was a waratah, which are native to Australia). This was seen back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_024_jx_11252006 - About to cross another bridge over Bull Creek as seen back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_033_11252006 - This was the bridge over Bull Creek back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_040_11252006 - This was the Bridal Veil Falls when we first saw it back in late November 2006 when much of that trip was affected by the severe drought that hit most of southeastern Australia
Lemonthyme_035_11252006 - Another look at the Bridal Veil Falls during our late November 2006 visit
Lemonthyme_036_jx_11252006 - The log bridge fronting Bridal Veil Falls as seen from back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_037_jx_11252006 - Looking back at a sign pointing the way back the way we came from the Champagne Falls as seen at the Bridal Veil Falls bridge back in late November 2006
Lemonthyme_038_jx_11252006 - Looking back at the log bridge as we were about to rejoin the 4wd track back to the Lemonthyme Lodge during our late November 2006 visit. 11 years later, that bridge was replaced by a more typical sturdy bridge with railings

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In order to access the Champagne Falls and Bridal Veil Falls, we first had to reach the Lemonthyme Wilderness Retreat (formerly the Lemonthyme Lodge).

However, since we took a pair of different routes, we’ll describe them in this section.

Driving from Cradle Mountain to the Lemonthyme Retreat

The first approach we took was from Cradle Mountain.

It would definitely be worth following this route description if going this route because the GPS tried to take us on a route that wasn’t recommended.

In fact, there was a strategically placed sign at the start of that bad route as I’m sure more than a few people had tried going that way.

So we first drove north on the Cradle Mountain Road to the Belvoir Rd (C132).

We then turned right to head east to continue on the Cradle Mountain Rd (C132) for about 18km.

Note that at about 12km along Cradle Mountain Rd, the GPS will definitely attempt to have you turn right onto Bull Creek Rd, which was the same 4wd track that we had to walk!

Anyways, we then reached a signed turnoff at Dolcoath Rd, where we then turned right and followed the unsealed Dolcoath Rd for about 7.5km.

Lemonthyme_17_002_11302017 - The day use car park right across from the track for Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls
The day use car park right across from the track for Champagne and Bridal Veil Falls

There were signs along the way to keep us on the correct road to the Lemonthyme Lodge.

Overall, this drive took about 45 minutes.

Driving from Devonport to the Lemonthyme Retreat

The second approach we took was from Devonport.

We began that route by taking the Bass Hwy (Hwy 1) then exiting at Stony Rise Rd (B19).

Following Stony Rise Rd northwest (beneath the highway), it then became Forth Rd (still B19).

Continuing for another 6km on Forth Rd, we then turned left onto Wilmot Rd (C132) shortly after crossing the River Forth.

We’d then follow Wilmot Road (C132) for about 46km as the road eventually became Cradle Mountain Road after passing through the town of Wilmot.

After getting past Moina, the C132 would reach the Dolcoath Rd turnoff on the left.

Lemonthyme_043_jx_11252006 - The Lemonthyme Lodge when we first visited back in late November 2006
The Lemonthyme Lodge when we first visited back in late November 2006

Then, we followed the remaining 7.5km unsealed road to the day use car park at the start of the Lemonthyme Wilderness Retreat complex.

Overall, this 62km drive would take at least an hour.

To provide you with some geographical context, Cradle Mountain was about 111km (over 90 minutes drive) north of Queenstown, 101km (about 75 minutes drive) south of Burnie, 78km (about 75 minutes drive) southwest of Devonport, 93km (about 90 minutes drive) west of Deloraine, 157km (about 2.5 hours drive) west of Launceston, and 319km (4 hours drive) northwest of Hobart.

Examining the falls from the base


Right to left sweep of the downstream scenery before ending at the falls as seen from a fern-covered rock outcrop


Semicircular sweep of the Bridal Veil Falls from the footbridge


Fixated on the Champagne Falls


Fixated on the Bridal Veil Falls

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Tagged with: moina, cradle mountain, cradle valley, lemonthyme, tasmania, australia, waterfall, bull creek, cowirrie, sheffield, devonport, bridal veil falls, kentish



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Johnny Cheng

About Johnny Cheng

Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls. Over the last 2 decades, he has visited thousands of waterfalls in over 40 countries around the world and nearly 40 states in the USA.
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