Ian Brown

Kanangra-Boyd Wilderness

  • Ian Brown| Kanangra-Boyd Wilderness

The Boyd Plateau falls to tributaries of the Coxs and Kowmung Rivers down steep escarpments of up to 1000 metres in height.

This spectacular country is the spiritual heartland of the bushwalker conservation movement. They waged fierce campaigns to stop limestone quarrying near Colong Caves in the 1960s, and again in the 1970s, to stop clear-felling of the montane forests of the Boyd Plateau for an exotic pine plantation. Kanangra-Boyd National Park was created in 1969, and the Kanangra-Boyd Wilderness - the second largest in NSW - was dedicated in 1997.

This image was captured on a cold winter's morning as the first rays of the sun struck the ridge-tops. I often camp nearby so I can get into position at the right time. Over a patch of montane heath on the sandstone Kanangra Tops, the scene takes in the valley of Kanangra Deep, reaching towards the main Blue Mountains Ridge on the northern skyline. The gorge is some 800 metres deep, with the quartzite ramparts of the Gangerang Range rising on the right (east) and the Thurat Range to the west. The distant peak is Mount Jenolan, on the delightfully-named Krungle Bungle Range. These Gundungurra names were gathered by early colonial surveyors, but sadly the meaning of many has been lost.