Wednesday, 22 April 2015

The Rainy Mountains

You may have seen scenes of destruction and flooding in NSW in the media recently. Of course these storms had to coincide with our camping trip to the Blue Mountains.

We stayed at Lake Lyell which is formed by damming the river for the use of the nearby power-stations. When we arrived the lake level was about a foot from the top of the dam wall, when we left it was pouring over it!

On the way up to our camp-site we stopped at Govetts Leap for a short walk near the falls (see top picture).

Whilst in the mountains we visited Mount Piper Power-station for a free guided tour. Of course we couldn't take photographs. It was very interesting although a little depressing seeing the huge pile of coal they would burn up in under a week.

We spent a rainy afternoon at Bathurst Fossil and Mineral Museum.

During a short break in the rain we took the dirt road to Newnes, the historic former site of a shale oil mining complex. We explored the Old Hotel and a few ruins on the camp-site side of the river, the hotel owner asked the children to feed the chickens that seemed to roam freely through the old place. We were unable to go across to the main ruins site as the river was in flood. The camp-site looks lovely so we'll come back on a dry day to explore the rest.

Inside old Newnes Hotel

Newnes campsite, almost empty apart from the kangaroos - I can't imagine why!

Undeterred by the rain and kitted up in full waterproofs we decided to explore the granite tors at Evans Crown Nature Reserve. We trekked right to the top of the towering granite boulders for a view across the countryside.

We'll be back at some point to explore in the sunshine!

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