This one is a story of two campsites, both free, both very nice and both worthy of your attention when killing a day or three in Tasmania.
Although these 2 sites are within view of each other across the long and narrow Lake Barrington, they are separated by a 45 minute road trip round the northern or southern ends of the lake. But either of them is useful for mainland travellers at the beginning or end of a Tassie trip as they are handy to Devonport and the big red boat that gets you across the water. The lake is 16 kilometres long but just 1 kilometre wide and being deep in a valley the water tends to be very sheltered which is nice for some kayaking. The lake is open for fishing all year round and is stocked with Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout and Atlantic Salmon. Lake Barrington was created when the Forth River was dammed and this separated the towns of Wilmot and Sheffield, once just across the valley from each other. At the points where there was once a road linking the two towns, there are now two very nice camping spots.
On the eastern side of this long, narrow lake is a camp area owned and maintained by the Kentish Council. Local to this site there is a boat ramp and a couple of pontoons provided by Hydro Tasmania, in order to provide one of the key attractions . . . . getting out on the lake. The camping spots are mostly open and sunny and overlooking the lake but with a few tucked under the shade trees. The amenities include toilets, rubbish bins provided, some picnic tables, a boat ramp and access pontoons. Pets are permitted and the lake is a great spot for some swimming and canoeing.
Supplies can be bought in Sheffield which is just 12 kilometres away and if you feel like a solid walk up a mountain, Mt Roland is only about 15 kms drive away. Sheffield is the “town of murals” but if you are there on a nice day it is the mountain backdrop that will really impress. There are over 30 sites at Kentish Park and many are very well suited to larger rigs, several having excellent views out over the water. Others are what the real estate fraternity like to call filtered views, but basically you cannot see the lake through the trees. Access is via the C140 south of Sheffield. I’d suggest you BYO firewood too. Sheffield Visitor Information Centre (03) 6491 1036. You can stay up to 21 days in any consecutive 2 month period which is pretty generous.
Lake Barrington Camp Area (Wilmot)
This one is quite a handy spot when approaching from the west, apparently with a 48 hour limit although there is no signage telling you that. There is a 3 sided shelter that could be handy for food preparation in inclement weather. The toilets are flush type so if you prefer the splash down to the long drop then that might be an attraction for you. There are lots of flat sites with room for a dozen groups without intruding on one another, suitable for large rigs. There is a free electric BBQ as well.
This has a nice bush setting with an overview of the lake. There are informal fireplaces and just down the hill is a concrete boat ramp. Access is via a good quality dirt road and the site is about 4 kms from Wilmot.
Just The Facts:
Lake Barrington (East & West Sides)
Location: The site on the western side is 4 kms from Wilmot. The Kentish Park site is 12 kms east of Sheffield.
Facilities: Each site has flush toilets and a shelter building. Fireplaces are provided as well as free BBQs. Each of the sites also has brand new boat ramp facilities with floating pontoons for easy access.
Wheelchair Access: Firm, flat surfaces throughout the camp areas so should be fine with care.
Rates: Free for both. On the Wilmot side there is a 48 hr limit and on the Kentish Park side the limit is 21 days in any consecutive 2 month period.