Bluff River Gorge

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Bluff River Gorge

Postby Macca81 » Fri 04 Dec, 2009 8:34 pm

i recently heard from someone who had heard that bluff river gorge is a nice day walk (friend of a friend whos brothers sisters cousins boyfriend knew a man who's son did something... damned 2nd hand info...), but i cant really seem to find much info on it other than how to get to the start of the track and that there is some bouldering in the area (just outside buckland).

so, what i want to know is if anyone has done it, if they have any pics of the area(i hear its really good scenery), and if the 'river crossing' is really as dificult as im told...

cheers :D
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby flyfisher » Fri 04 Dec, 2009 9:12 pm

Yeah, tis a nice walk,but I haven't crossed the river . Last time I was there the river looked very sad but I rekon it's had a good flush out now.

Access is pretty easy just past the Levendale state forest sign there is a track which turns right (off the Woodsdale road) and runs close to a fence on the right.Can be a little rough and/or boggy for cars if its wet.

There is another track about 300m further on as well. If you choose to walk, take the track by the fence as it leads to the taped start of the walk where a track branches to the right and goes steeply down. Dont drive down in a 2wd or you won't get back up.

The taped walk I have done 2 or 3 times heads left (upstream) and can be followed till you run out of time or have had enough.If you feel like an easy walk back to the car just head uphill to the left till you get to the top and you have a fairly level sandy vehicle track back to the car.

I have not explored the downstream section yet which gous for quite a way and is a river reserve on the map.

The general nature of the gorge is sandstone with some massive overhangs and cliffs. with sandy ledges under and some fascinating rock sculptures.

A great walk in not so good weather, and better in nice weather. Watch out for stinging nettles as there are a few there. Enjoy.

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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby SueOfTheSouth » Sat 05 Dec, 2009 7:16 pm

I agree with ff, it is a lovely walk. About 4 1/2 - 5 hrs to do the circuit. As stated follow the track by the fence before the taped track along under the cliff line for about an hour, before climbing a short way to a large open area and then descending again to the river crossing. The track gradually ascends again on a taped track with good views down onto the river. You then sidle the hill before descending steeply and crossing the river again, with a short climb back to start of the walk. Lovely wildflowers in late spring.
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby GerryDuke » Sat 05 Dec, 2009 10:50 pm

It's an interesting place Macca. I have it on my site. Just Google it. Apologies for the very rough map.
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby flyfisher » Sun 06 Dec, 2009 8:50 pm

Top pic Gerry Duke, there are some lovely formations and sculptures in the overhangs and the one you chose is a beauty. Thanks for sharing.

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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby navonod » Sat 26 Dec, 2009 6:57 pm

It is a beautiful walk.
I was there a couple of weeks ago and recent floods have made river crossings much harder than the other two times i have done it. There was also a lot of stinging nettle on and around the track, so just prepare to have to walk through water and get stung.
My boyfriend nearly put his hand on a copperhead, so watch out for them too
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby bluewombat » Mon 28 Dec, 2009 8:05 pm

Had a wander here yesterday. A few things I would clarify re the various site links and info here
1. Just west of Buckland on the A3 is the beautiful St John's church, turn off the main road onto the side road (c318) opposite the church.
2. Drive 11.5 kms, on the right hand side you are driving through fields, at 11.5 kms they stop. The sign mentioning the State Forest seems to have disappeared but it is the transition between field and forest that marks where you need to be.
3. Walk down the track next to the fence line, sort of a 4wd drive track to start with. After 15mins you will come to a clearing, big red arrow on a tree points to the track you need to take, still on the same bearing as the fence line. This eventually turns left (up the gorge) and you continue to follow the track along the top of the gorge. The 4wd track swings sharply uphill at one point, the walking track is straight in front of you but no longer has any sign saying Gorge. Lots of tape markers at the start of the track but confusingly some on the uphill part of the 4wd track as well. Lets call this point A
4. You can amble along here for about an hour or so, at times getting down close to the river but mostly up under the cliff lines, a lot of overhangs/caves reminescent of those the Blue Mountains behind Sydney. There would be some nice short bouldering routes if the rock were cleaner. Plenty of swallows and the odd peregrine as I came through.
You will pass a nice deep pool with an open camp area and what looks like old camo netting then trend back uphill fairly steadily to a large flat area with rock fireplace. Up to here there are no river crossings so viable whatever the weather.
5. At this point you can walk uphill on a footpad to a 4wd track which roughly follows the top of the cliff line and takes you back to point A pretty quickly.
Or alternately
6. walk across the clearing with the fireplace and locate the pink track marker and head back down hill to what will be your first river crossing. You will then head down the opposite side of the gorge and circle back to close to your starting point.
7. Lots of thistles and lots of stinging nettles
8. Some big trout in some of the larger ponds
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby Macca81 » Tue 29 Dec, 2009 10:06 pm

bluewombat wrote:8. Some big trout in some of the larger ponds
bw

like the sounds of that!
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby stoogest » Wed 30 Dec, 2009 1:03 pm

We attempted to do the walk yesterday, rather unsuccessfully though.

We were relying on the forest sign to tell us which of the 4wd tracks was the right one. We eventually decided on the one adjacent the large paddock and it turns out it was the right decision, but this was after about 30-40 minutes of uneccesary driving.

We then managed to miss the turn off to the right at the gorge and hence ended up trying to do the walk in a clockwise direction. Bad idea. Lovely walk along the western side of the gorge along a 4wd track, but for the life of us we couldn't find the spot at the north west end of the gorge where the teack crosses the river to the eastern side. We ended up just walking back the way we came. Nice spot, but I'll have to go back one day to get the full experience. Also some good looking camping spots there.

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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby SueOfTheSouth » Wed 30 Dec, 2009 1:23 pm

It took us 3 goes before we found the circuit at Bluff River. The 1st time we decided to drive down the 4wdrive track next to the open paddock, simply because we had a new small 4wd ( being our 1st and only 1 week old) and wondered how it would cope!! Well it didn't as we got stuck on top of a large mound of dirt. Fortunately a little kid came down on a bike and was delighted that we were in a bit of trouble, quickly said "Me Dad will get ya out" and 1/2 an hour later returned with his Dad. Luckily he knew what the problem was (the diff was stuck on top of the dirt) and probably lack of 4wd experience on the driver's part. Eventually he drove the car out and we were on the way home. Our 2nd attempt was with friends and we couldn't find the track to cross the river so ended up returning the way we started. Finally the 3rd try was successful and a really nice walk. So good luck if and when you return stoogest.
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby GerryDuke » Wed 30 Dec, 2009 6:49 pm

Back to Bluewombat's post. Not quite sure where Point A is BW. If you kept going down the fence like past the 'red arrow' you would ultimately come to a gully. The track heads up hill to the left following the line of the gully which actually goes down to the bottom of the gorge at the first river crossing. See the sign below. On the opposite side of the gully there is a taped route beyond a fence. The fence is at right angles to the original fence which is followed from the car park. This route takes you to a vantage point overlooking the gorge. The taped route continues on to another track below the ledge doubling back to the other track that goes down to the river crossing. The tracks meet close to the river crossing. The two tracks make for an easy loop track without crossing the river. The track across the river allows for another loop (about 3 hours or more) crossing back over the river and heads back up to the 4WD track described by BW. We crossed the river at a log jam which may not have been the main crossing. The track out needed a little finding. It doubled back sharply near the pool before heading back out. A great walk.

Gerry

Sign directing the way to the 1st river crossing.
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The 'red arrow'
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby bluewombat » Wed 30 Dec, 2009 7:25 pm

Hi Gerry, from what I can determine there are several ways to skin this cat. One track goes up the gorge on the left side mostly just under the cliff line, at the far end you can cross the river and come back down the right side of the gorge, this would entail a couple of crossings of the main river( I did not do that bit so am only speculating from what others described) or alternately you can pick up a 4wd track that travels back down the same side of the gorge above the cliff line (which is what I described in the earlier post). There is also from your description and map a short circuit at the southern end of the gorge. So really there are 3 options for circuits of varying lengths and potentially dampness.
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby GerryDuke » Wed 30 Dec, 2009 10:00 pm

Need to send someone down with a GPS BW. Tracks and trails everywhere.

The forest sign was there in June!
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby stoogest » Wed 30 Dec, 2009 11:30 pm

lol. Does 'forest produce' include the sign?! :D
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby flyfisher » Fri 01 Jan, 2010 7:07 pm

Found a few pics on my older computer so I thought I might as well put them up.
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Note some fire damage evident in pic 4 :(

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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby MJD » Sun 27 Jun, 2010 5:58 pm

Also know as the Buckland Gorge. It is a little confusing to find but well worth it if you can.
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby abowen » Mon 28 Jun, 2010 12:19 pm

This is a great little walk.
I have been told that the camo netting described in an earlier post is what is left of some 'cash' crops that we being grown down near the river.
I have also walked along the gorge rim further downstream, but with all the re-taping have not been able to pick up the starting point. Basically it is turn right at first lot of tapes after walking the fence line and you eventually re-join the downhill track somewhere near the sign that says 'Gorge' (from memory). This section - if you find it - has an old car wreck which has been pushed over the rim and it also has a number of large hollows in the sandstone which you can stand inside. These are all near the top of the rim rather than lower down. I have a rough map of this somewhere if anyone is interested.
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby Chris » Thu 22 May, 2014 7:11 pm

abowen wrote:This is a great little walk.

Indeed it is.
abowen wrote:I have a rough map of this somewhere if anyone is interested.

Wish I had asked for this before going in yesterday :) Was with 3 people who had been in previously at varying times over the last 10 years. Even they were somewhat confused by the routes, not greatly helped by the over-abundance of tapes. Despite this we spent about 4 hours doing a fascinating circuit. Very dry - absolutely no problems crossing the river - and no nettles or thistles obvious, just one apparent rather wide snake track in the sand.

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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby Analog6 » Sun 13 Sep, 2015 5:07 pm

The arrow and sign seem to have disappeared, or else I am blind. I haves found 2 sites with directions, I followed one today (http://hikinginsetasmania.blogspot.com. ... gorge.html) and was stymied. I came home and found this one which is different and seems clearer. Next time! http://hikinginsetasmania.blogspot.com. ... gorge.html
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby flyfisher » Sun 13 Sep, 2015 7:55 pm

I started from the same point once at the river but instead of crossing it I just proceeded up the left side under the spectacular overhangs and along the sandy ledges.

After a considerable distance an opportunity came to go back up on top and walk back along the track to the vehicle. (4x4)

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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby Analog6 » Mon 14 Sep, 2015 3:13 pm

One of my photographer friends has been there. We are collaborating on photos and directions. Once I have it set I'll make a blog post and come back and link it here.
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Re: Bluff River Gorge

Postby L_Cham_67 » Mon 15 Jul, 2019 3:28 pm

I went to Bluff River Gorge last week, it doesn't appear that much has changed in terms of routes. I inadvertently took the southern route, which goes past the old car wreck (thinking it was the regular turnoff). I became very confused when I arrived back at the OUT/GORGE sign! :lol:
I guess it's a bit like a figure of eight, with the OUT/GORGE sign being the connecting area where the two loops meet up.
See the pics below. The first picture is the turnoff I took which takes you past the car wreck (notice the rock cairn on the ground). This is after the red arrow on the tree. The second picture is the regular turnoff, which is a few hundred metres beyond the 'car wreck' turnoff.
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Turnoff for the route past the car wreck
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The 'regular' turnoff, which leads to the OUT/GORGE sign
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