North East Tourist News
Gorge-ous outlook on high
THE cascading waterfalls at Beechworth Gorge have attracted visitors since ancient times. Natural rock pools shaped by years of erosion paired with spectacular views of the Woolshed Valley have rendered the area a peaceful retreat since its first Aboriginal inhabitants.
The overhanging rock shelters were once used by the Dhudhoroa, Bpangerang, Jaitmathang and Minjambuta people, who lived by Spring Creek thousands of years ago. Indigenous wildlife found in the gorge includes kangaroos, wallabies, possums, parrots, cockatoos, wombats and the occasional sleepy koala spotted in the fork of a tree. Flora includes lilies, orchids and other wildflowers, as well as bush peas, Grevilleas, Wattles, Beechworth Cypress Pines, Stringybark and Blakely’s Red Gums.
The Beechworth Gorge served as a dreamy refuge for centuries, but the peace and quiet was not destined to last. Just 11 months after gold was discovered at Spring Creek in February 1852, an influx of over 8000 hopeful miners had quickly populated the region with dreams of striking lucky. It wasn’t long before the wealth of the gold rush transformed the sleepy town of Beechworth into a heaving regional centre, home to more than 20,000 people from all over the world by 1857.
While the prospect of finding gold nowadays is unlikely, the Beechworth Gorge has retained a natural beauty that continues to attract visitors to this day. A network of trails in and around the gorge allows visitors to explore the natural features of the park, discovering historical points of interest along the way. Lookouts around the gorge have views into New South Wales and some even show Mount Buffalo.
Find out more about walking the Beechworth Gorge at www.victoriashighcountry.com.au or visit www.beechworth.com.