QUICK GUIDE KWIAMBAL NATIONAL PARK
Sometimes you find a location so breathtaking and overwhelming that it leaves a permanent mark on your psyche. Kwiambal is one of those places. Once you have been, you carry it with you and you are left wondering why you never went before.
Hidden away in the bush of New South Wales, we awoke early and left Ashford in the direction of the Severn River. As we approached our destination, the roads began to become teeming with wildlife, kangaroos and emus gave me the opportunity to try out my evasive driving and a particularly terrifying black snake decided to make its presence known to me during a pit stop.
We reached Lemon Tree Flat campsite in the late afternoon, perched on the southern bank of the Severn River. The campsite sees prospective campers jostling for space between the roos which seem to own the site. We awake early the next day to try out luck at catching some Murray Cod for breakfast and although we weren’t successful, the orchestra of bird songs which announced the arrival of dawn made the whole experience worthwhile.
The Severn River is framed by immense granite slabs marked by past floods. The walk up to the Dungeon Lookout gives a great view of the river snaking its way through a deep river gorge. The walk itself is easy and takes in some of the cliffs in the park. For a bit more of a challenge, try walking to the point where the Severn meets the Macintyre River.
Although there hadn’t been a lot of rain, the Macintyre river had a lot of water and the next day we drove to the lookout to take in the view of Macintyre Falls. We walked down to a secluded swimming spot and had another attempt at the Murray Cod, which proved elusive once again. After that, we spent the afternoon scrambling over rocks up Slippery Rock Track to the viewpoint at the top.
The next day we headed south to the Ashford Caves. The caves have a huge bat population. The caves are home to 3 different species and can be explored on your own. Bring some torches and let the intrepid explorer in you run wild. The kids will love it and there are plenty of bats to evoke screams from the easily spooked in the party.
Kwiambal National Park remains an undiscovered secret. It is yet to undergo the intense commercialization that has reached other Australian National Parks. The proximity to local wildlife with bats, koalas, emus, roos and a plethora of reptiles, gives the park a more adventurous feel. You feel like you have really wandered off the beaten track and escaped civilisation in a way that other national parks don’t. Whether you are just passing through the area for a night or planning to stay for longer to explore the region, the Kwiambal National Park has so much to offer that you will always have another something you want to do.
On our last morning, we finally caught our much awaited Murray Cod, and the cooked cod for breakfast rounded off our perfect getaway.
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