Dam Cliffs- Danger the whole family can enjoy

Once upon a time the powers that be decided to build a dam.

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The dam is situated to a series of massive cliffs.

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The locals told me to try the “spiral staircase”.

We climbed down this ladder thinking it was the spiral staircase. Quite possibly it wasn’t, because there was no spiral.

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We ended up on the underside of the dam, which was kind of spooky, but standing on slippery pillars above a sheer drop to dubious murky waters was a plus.

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But let’s forget about the underworld of the dam, and have a look at what the actual dam has to offer.

Firstly, the water is very deep. It is clear and swimming with tiny fishes that nibble on your feet and possibly free you from dead skin cells.

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Sploosh!

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Secondly, because it is so deep, almost everyone that comes here jumps off this cliff.

It’s shaped to conveniently allow you to jump off gradually higher and higher. I had a friend who started at the top, took a look down, then climbed down to the second highest level. He looked down, then climbed to the lowest level. He gave up, sat down, and said, “Today, I did not give in to peer pressure.”

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Jumping off this cliff does not lead to any injuries. However, if you don’t pin drop with your legs closed together, you may find that you leave the water feeling strangely violated, as water rushes quickly upwards and into your buttocks. For those of you that want a good clean, this may prove to be a blessing.

This cliff is also spectacular for rock climbing. You don’t need a harness because if you fall off – you just plummet into the water, instead of into your doom.

The reason I called this post, “Danger the whole family can enjoy” is because of a particular cliff swing.

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Now I am all for a bit of swinging. I’ve swung on much lower cliff swings. However, this cliff swing left me looking like THIS:

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This is an actual picture of my body following the incident.

Needless to say, it was a very funny experience. One second, I’m swinging down, feeling the rush of wind in my glorious hair. The next second, the water has smacked me in the side, and half of my body is in immense pain. I don’t normally swear, but I was pretty sure I was yelling out a combination of obscenities as I tried to stay afloat.

My partner (who is normally a bit hesitant about jumping) leapt off without a hesitation and swum me to shore. My hero!

I have pretty much recovered apart from a nasty bruise, but I actually don’t regret the experience, and maybe in the future I might try it again. I think I have terrible grip strength, and with a bit of practice, in time I will be able to do the swing.

Apparently there were two young boys lining up behind me, who saw me smack into the water, and said, “Um… maybe not”, and ran off.

Would I recommend the swing to other people? Absolutely. If you’re a strong young male, it should be no problem. If you’re a delicate flower like me? Probably not.

 

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Glow Worm Tunnel – Shining bright… like a diamond

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The drive begins at Graffiti Castle. No one knows why it is there, or who built it. In its glory days it could have been a toilet, or perhaps a spot for Blue Mountains witches to come for raves (I’ve heard they actually do that somewhere).


The bush is still, with nothing except a rusty car. Why did they break down there? Am I next?

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As you continue to drive to the Glow Worm Caves, you will see these layered rocks that have great handholds jutting out of them. They are perfect for a casual climb, and the view from the top of them looks out over the entire valley.

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When you get to the walk, you will go from dry, barren terrain, to lush ferns, that stretch out their leaves into the path that you’re trying to walk on. Luckily, there were no leeches.

I happened upon this trunk stretched across the path. It was too tall for me to climb on by myself, so I had to go through the ferns to inch my way across. The tree trunk is much more wobbly than it appears.

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When you eventually get to the tunnel, you will see this faded sign that reads, “Give the worms a go. Keep the lights and noise low. Please don’t touch glow worms.”

To be honest, I just hope the glow worms don’t touch me.

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The glow worms stretch out across the walls in similar patterns to the night sky. It’s basically like feeling the stars are actually very tiny, and close enough to touch. It is pitch black inside the tunnel except for the torch on my phone.

I wish I could take a photo of them to show you, but nothing would come close to knowing what it’s like to wander through a cold dripping cave at 7PM at night, hoping that when you come out of the pitch black tunnel, there will still be some daylight left to walk back by. It wasn’t just the tiny pin-pricks of light that made it an eerie experience, it was the whole atmosphere of the place.

I couldn’t make it through the entire tunnel because the echoes from ghostly voices and strange footsteps freaked me out too much. Turns out it was just some teenage boys.

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