Our first destination was Cradle Mountain Lodge, inside Cradle Mountain National Park, where we would spend two nights. Along the way, we picked up lunch at a charmingly quaint pub in Bothwell, which is, as are most things in Tas, happily ensconsed in the middle of nowhere. Naturally, there wasn't a damned thing on the menu that we could eat (Who has a whole steak for lunch? Honestly.), but we prevailed upon the bartender/waitress/manager to make us a pair of grilled cheese sandwiches. Michael had his with a pint of the local beer, which was a disappointingly bland lager, tasting almost exactly the same as all of the other disappointingly bland lagers that are brewed throughout Australia. Unfortunately, Tas seems not to have escaped that aspect of Australian culture.
After looking of the trail options, we decide to head up the Overland Track a short ways, then cut off to the side to see Crater Falls, and the Crater Lake beyond that. We liked the trail because it had a loop option if we had the time to continue on, but we didn't have to take it.
The beginning of the trail was a wooden boardwalk, covered with what looked like chicken wire but made out of rubber. I don't know what it's called, but I'm damned grateful for it, since it saved me from more than one dangerous slip. This part of the trail led out over windswept, open grasslands, where snowmelt, running down from the top of the mountain, poured in rivulets between and through every tussock of grass.