Travel

Natural wonders of Clarence Valley

Rich history: The south-western side of the Clarence Gorge has been in the Winters family for 111 years and is a working cattle property. In recent years the gorge has become a tourist attraction. The property itself is 3364 hectares and fronts the Clarence River for about 10km. Yamba kayakers Mark and Sylvie Watson are dwarfed by the basalt cliffs that divide the Winters property.
Rich history: The south-western side of the Clarence Gorge has been in the Winters family for 111 years and is a working cattle property. In recent years the gorge has become a tourist attraction. The property itself is 3364 hectares and fronts the Clarence River for about 10km. Yamba kayakers Mark and Sylvie Watson are dwarfed by the basalt cliffs that divide the Winters property.

THE sense of nature, in its most ancient form, is palpable in the rugged cliffs and deep caverns of the Upper Clarence as four rivers flow downwards through the valleys of the Devil’s Fault Line mountains to converge on a place locals call The Junction.

Having spent two weeks kayaking and bushwalking the wondrous turns of our mighty river, I was left inspired by the sheer majesty of what we have on our doorstep – just one hour’s drive west of Grafton.

The Nymboida and Mann rivers from the south, Coombadjha from the west and the Clarence River from the north combine their journey with their land cousins, the mammoth granite boulders and forests, to lie on the fringe of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia.

The Clarence Gorge, both the top and bottom sections, offers an extraordinary and diverse range of water and visual experiences.

Depending on the rainfall, the river flow can vary within hours while the scenery that envelopes this watery trail offers up a spectacular range of vistas.

The original custodians call their land Gumbainggin Country, while two long-time farming families, the Ibbotts and Winters, whose properties adjoin the Clarence at the Gorge, have working cattle stations with more than 5260 hectares between them.

Both have a huge responsibility of ensuring the legacy of Mother Nature is there for future generations to enjoy and value.

The Austen property (some 2023 hectares) overlooks The Junction from the west, as does the family’s namesake mountain, Mount Austen.

Like most things rural, time moves slowly for these families as their farms have been handed down through generations.

Kayaking in and around the Gorge is a gentle way in which to truly experience and feel the magic of this very special place.

Paddling with the flow of the river enables the kayaker to enjoy the majestic walls of granite, some of which tower up to 15 metres, and boulders that have seemingly been strategically placed as nature’s mixed media artworks

The river depth varies anywhere from one metre to nine metres on a normal flow.

There are a number of areas to camp, bushwalk, and if roughing it isn’t your preferred style, there are some more contemporary places to stay.

A new art gallery (Coombadjha Art) opened its doors to the public last year and there is horse riding to entertain and give a taste of the outback.

The natural health of the river is preserved as the Clarence floods give rise to the opportunity for the river system to flush and clean itself to maintain its quality for the life it supports both above and below its confines.




Have you seen this man? Investigations into Bangalow theft underway

Police believe the man shown in these cctv images may be able to assist with the investigation of a Bangalow theft.

The man may be able to assist police with investigations.

Politician cancels Splendour gig

DEBATE: Tony Jones' Q&A; at Splendour is one of the most popular non-music-related events of the festival.

Changes in the line up for Q&A with Tony Jones tomorrow

Young mum shot four times by her husband

Edith Mulvena lies in an unmarked grave at East Lismore cemetery.

Husband murders wife in dramatic domestic violence situation

Latest deals and offers

Splendour revellers cool down with giant emoji

The Mr Poopie sculpture at Splendour in the Grass.

Mr Poopie sculpture is inspired by the ice cream/poop emoticon.

Superheroes of the big screen enjoy sounds of Splendour

CHRIS Hemsworth and his Avengers mates drop by Byron festival.

Indigenous artist shows tourists secrets of Aboriginal painting

Ever thought "I could do that" about Aboriginal art?

Dynamic pics from Splendour Day 1

The Strokes perform at Splendour in the Grass 2016. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star

Check out the latest pictures from Splendour in the Grass.

Politician cancels Splendour gig

DEBATE: Tony Jones' Q&A; at Splendour is one of the most popular non-music-related events of the festival.

Changes in the line up for Q&A with Tony Jones tomorrow

Bindi Irwin: 18 magic photos to mark her 18th birthday

Bindi Irwin with a python.

Photos: Bindi Irwin from babyhood to 18

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

Massive residential 9-storey high-rise hit by delays

An artist’s impression of the eight-storey-high apartment complex that Bernoth Holdings wants to build in South Toowoomba, next to the City Golf Club.

Developer struggles to get approved high-rise development started