I'd not done any research on this but was convinced by a couple who were just leaving that it was worth a look. I'm so pleased I listened to them.
Fondest memory: From my notes at the time:
"When I returned to Boowinda my legs were sending a clear message they didn’t want to clamber over yet more rocks but, ultimately, that’s what I did, slogging my way up this extraordinary canyon with its narrow passage and yet more mossy rock faces.
My legs complained and I cut the walk short, only going up about half a kilometre and bearing in mind the time. It had taken me 5 hours to get this far and I still had to get back before the winter sunset and it was already half past one."
The canyon has moss covered walls on one side and is an atmospheric place to visit as it winds around bends carved by the flows when the floods are on.
There was little left now but to walk to my goal, there were few distractions en route and an hour passed before I did crossing 19 and came upon what I now hold to be my favourite spot in the whole gorge.
Fondest memory: There is a large slab of rock which is just at comfortable seat height and from here you have an unrestricted view across the rock laden riverbed to a sheer wall partly reflected in the waters and, down at the bottom, there were tree roots of extraordinary shape over a pool that mirrored their errant ways while off to the right was an undercut with horizontal bands of yellow ochre and black vertical stains of algae, the same type that stains the mediaeval churches of Europe and, at one point, there was a pattern that looked not unlike the fold over reverse blotting paper images favoured by psychiatrists. Carnarvon Stream bounced beneath a ribbon of red rock underneath, cascading not far below me and bequeathing different tones of splash depending on the height of drop, searching for a new way through, pausing only in a deep pond of its own creation.
A couple from Uralla came upon me and they started explaining where their town was. Imagine their surprise when I started rattling off names of people who lived there. Yes, they knew the Thackways, remembered Anne but couldn’t remember nondescript Mike and they knew Frank Low and his photography so I got them to pose.
From my notes at the time:
"I returned to the main trail and next opted out at Ward’s Canyon, a short, steep, but pretty affair with a waterfall that carried not a lot of water but, above the fall was a colourful canyon or two bedecked with the usual liverwort and moss and a stream that had vividly coloured rocks with backlit tree ferns adding vibrant colour to the scene. I thought this the prettiest I’d seen so far and, then I transgressed beyond a barrier, walked into another beautiful spot, a small slot canyon without flowing water, just the moss laden walls on one side and tree debris littering the floor. Somehow it seemed like it had been this way for centuries."
This is another of the side trips (all worthwhile) that I did while I was there. It's only a short, but steep (with stairs) excursion but I thought it had a lot to offer photography wise.
Fondest memory: After the small waterfall which I doubt would be permanent, you can move on up to the moss and liverwort hung rock walls above and also look into the clear waters of the stream and see wonderful colours in the rocks.