In the most rugged part of the mountains between the
gigantic heights of Guouogong and Paralyser the Kanangra River takes
its course sheltered in a gorge close on 3,000 feet in depth. This
stream, according to the map, is the true Kanangra River, and though
compared with its tributary, Kanangra Creek, it has a short course,
it is nevertheless a merry one.
The river rises by the granite tops of
Krunglebungle, and, before reaching major proportions, cascades over
faces of rock till it reaches the quartzite beds, when it descends
rapidly over a series of falls to meet a sister stream emerging from
the shady depths of Davies' Canyon. Together these streams form the
Kanangra River as we know it, and as it happily pursues its
boisterous path to join Kanangra Creek and the Cox's River.
The Canyon Source
But most attractive of all is Davies' Canyon, which
supplies the greater part of the water in the river. Its waterway
does not possess an official name, but its main source is Sally Camp
Creek, whiqh rises near Cunyng-hame's on the Kanangra Road, and, in
company with one or two other creeks, cuts a northerly course across
the Thurat Tops. Its career is short, but chequered; from a height
of 3,500 feet it drops in four miles to 1,200 feet, where it meets
Kanangra River, and throughout it presents an endless variety of
delightful and exciting aspects.
Altogether the creek has some ten or twelve falls,
ranging from 30 feet to 150 or 200 feet in height, which have been
formed by erosion of surface rock laying bare the tilted quartzite
which forms bars across the creek bed. Tumbling down long series of
cascades, the creek swirls into mirrored pools graced by cedars,
kurrajongs and tangled vines, its impetuous course temporarily
interrupted till it leaves the lower end by a narrow torrent, which
gaily bounds amongst the boulders scattered in the rocky creek bed.
In places it wells up like water in a sand hole and, overflowing the
rocky barrier which nature has provided, it falls helplessly to deep
pools below. The water here, icy even in the summer, is uninviting;
its grey-black depths do not attract, but rather are ominous and
repel the walker who fain would take a plunge to cool his heated
Yet around the next bend the stream develops another
mood. It comes to falls of beauty, delicate as the tracery of fine
lace or Madeira work, the water spreading like a film over the
glossy wet surface of the rocks down which it slides to peaceful
reaches of the creek. The spirit of the creek here seems to reflect
the soft gaiety of the vegetation and the colour of the bird life
which abounds so plentifully; its beauty and charm are irresistible.
Above the creek the eastern side is crowned with the
rocky ramparts of the ridge out to Paralyser, crumbling here and
there to long avalanche slides, while the western side slopes up
towards the heights of Krunglebungle. Rain forest, brush, cedars and
monkey ropes adorn the banks and the mountain sides till the rocky
slopes above deprive them of a hold for their tenuous roots.
This is a paradise in summer, where the sun makes a
short visit each day during the midday hours and where nature can be
seen in her every mood—fierce, beautiful, and calm. Here can be
enjoyed in summer those delights of the bush which we seek without
the oppressive heat of January days and nights. Though it is one of
the less known parts of our mountains, the Canyon is well worth a
visit, and to those of a pioneering or hardy spirit it will prove an
adventure in itself.