This is Landsdowne Road. Well, more accurately, a part of Landsdowne Road. The part that goes behind the house I stay. This is a fair representation of the lushness and the dirt roads that characterize the area.
This is just a part of the sublime view from the verandah of the cottage I stay at while in Comboyne. For exquisite moments soaking yourself in the wonders of nature, this venue is hard to beat.
The enormity of the sky and vastness and variety of the Australian terrain come to life while you are sitting here.
The picture doesn't begin to do justice to what it's like, just a rough idea of what's to see.
The chatter of the birds, crackling of the storms, stunning night sky, the drifting breeze wafting past your face, the sight of the ocean in the distance with glimmering sunlight reflected in its surface; it will all happen for you in Comboyne on this verandah.
And what do the falls look like in flood?
When it's like this the road just before the falls is impassable and the stages of the fall become as one as the water plummets in great volume with a mighty roar.
Worth a look but, mind the leeches!
The opening is a quote from a famous Aussie song and I, for one, echo that sentiment and, if you're seeking a fine stand of eucalypts then you could do worse than to go to Ellenbrough Falls.
This group of three (note green colour of rear one) are located on the opposite side of the gorge to the falls, about 200 metres from the lookout.
On most people's list of top ten falls in Australia, Ellenborough would surely rate.
It has a substantial drop, a sub-tropical rainforest setting and is set in a horseshoe-shaped canyon.
Recently an engineer from the local council added a walkway that makes access to the base available for all those prepared to walk up and down lots of stairs through leafy undergrowth. Personally, I can't get enough of that stuff.
There is usually a caravan there where you can buy basic takeaway food and there is an ashphalt carpark and toilets but some of the road, from whichever direction you come, will be dirt.
It has become very popular and, on occasions, they even take busloads up there but there are still quiet glades, such as Tallow Wood Grove, where you can be 20 metres off the track and no-one knows you're there.
The falls themselves are the biggest single drop in Australia, crashing 160 metres to the rocks below. Though Wallaman Falls and Wollomombi are much higher, they go in a number of steps.
This shot is taken when there was a fair amount of water going over, it's not usually flowing as freely.
Half way down the Boorgana walk there is a lookout where you can view the falls. Nice as this is, I recommend you spend the extra half hour and go all the way to the bottom where this is a sample of what you will see.
Also, en route, you get to see the best part of the walk as an added bonus. The strangler fig and the enchanted garden shown elsewhere are two of the things that only appear in the second half.
I've taken people down here who have been to the Daintree, Australia's best known rainforest, and they said that the Daintree that they saw wasn't a patch on Boorganna. It's all to do with publicity. One day, something will happen up here at Comboyne and the world will want to come but, until then, I can still enjoy it, even on a busy long weekend, without hardly anyone there.
The glorious and varied vegetation is a delight to the eye. Here we see a strangler fig doing its thing. In time, the tree inside will die and the fig will take over. It won't happen it my lifetime but it is happening.
I've seen a few rainforests, travelled around Australia and I've yet to see a better stand of bird's nest ferns than those you see right here. My friends who were there for the first time said "It's like walking through a cathedral". I can't think of a better description for this treasure of the Australian bush.
This is a pretty rainforest remnant left untouched and now run by National Parks and WIldlife. It features a zig-zag track that, at the half way point, has a lookout over Rawson Falls, seen crashing into rockfalls of a bygone era, misty spray drifting upwards carried by the waterfall induced wind.
Further down you eventually get to the base (recommended), passing a section where birds nest ferns are in abundance due to a recent rock fall and accompanied by a cacophany of bird noises. Native pigeons thrashing into the upper branches, scrub turkeys scratching in the leaf litter and, if you're really fortunate, you may glimpse a gecko or a noisy pita in the lush undergrowth.
Allow about 2 hours for a comfortable walk
Just driving around Comboyne there are a few things you can't avoid seeing. They're called cows. Yes, there are some deer and a few other exotic species but you will see cows. Lots of them. Set amongst the rolling countryside I find it all rather pleasant and relaxing. The cows are relaxed, why shouldn't you be!