Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Killarney Glen

In April last year, my husband and I took a drive out to the Beechmont/Canungra area in search of some waterfalls I had seen in a photo. I had heard they were a "secret" and didn't have anything to go by except the photo (not even a name). An Instagram friend & fellow photographer, Paul Fleming, from Tasmania assisted me with finding out the name of the location. (Thanks Paul)
Once I had a name, I researched the area, the history of the falls and scoured Google Earth to find the exact location.


If you speak to the locals, which we had the pleasure of doing at the Canungra Visitor Info Centre and on the actual property, it is very clear that this spot is not a secret at all. It is actually a recommended "must see" in the area.

The track down begins relatively easy but becomes very rugged, narrow and steep. There is an alternative wider track used by the caretaker's vehicles which is even steeper. It is well worth the walk down though.




The falls are located on a property called Killarney Glen, owned by the Fitzgerald family since the late 1800's. Pat Fitzgerald (Snr) originally purchased Killarney Glen from his uncle's estate. 
Part of his plans were to use it as a site for recreation & education; the Glen had a long history of visitation & recreation dating back to the early 1900's, with Killarney Falls & 5 other permanent waterfalls on Back Creek identified on tourist maps long before Binna Burra was established.



At the end of the Vietnam War (1971), the compulsory acquisition of Killarney Glen & adjacent properties was made by the Commonwealth Government. In 1977, with the support of the local community & media, Killarney Glen was listed by the Australian Heritage Commission. Although the area is owned by the Commonweath Government, and the Defence Department are tenants of the property for periodic military exercises, the Fitzgerald's won a long battle to keep this unique property open to the public

Pat Fitzgerald Jnr, along with his neighbour & friend, George Lea, continue to maintain the property for visitor access. 
We felt blessed to converse with George for about 40 mins while we were there. He is a lovely down to earth man & a mine of local information.








We will definitely head back for another visit, and to explore more of the falls along Back Creek once I am walking much better.

Linking with these memes:


http://ourworldtuesdaymeme.blogspot.com.au/          http://asoutherndaydreamer.blogspot.com.au/          http://www.kissess4u.com/

27 comments:

Felicia said...

what a gorgeous waterfall. love the heart basin.

Powell River Books said...

The falls and the pool at the bottom are amazing. That's so wonderful that they have been protected and remain open to the public. - Margy

Sylvia K said...

An incredible waterfall it is indeed!! Truly breathtaking as is the heart shaped pool!! Superb captures, Liz!! Thanks for sharing the beauty and thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog! Always appreciated!

TexWisGirl said...

Really beautiful place!

TexWisGirl said...

Really beautiful place!

Pat Tillett said...

I'd say it was worth the hike! What a gorgeous place. The colors of the water and rocks are beautiful. REALLY nice photos Liz.

Grandma Barb's This and That said...

Beautiful place. I love the way the water is rushing over the rocks and the heart shaped pool at the bottom of the falls.

Gemma Wiseman said...

Such a scenic property with so many unique scenes within scenes. Love the falls of water.

Stephanie Robinson said...

What a beautiful walk and what a reward at the end - such clear water, the heart shape and great photos #ourworldtuesday

Bob Bushell said...

Oh yes,you can't beat the walk in the forest, and the waterfalls, superb.

eileeninmd said...

What a pretty place for a walk. The waterfalls is gorgeous! Lovely photos.

Kim Stevens said...

Beautiful, and I love that you can see a heart at the bottom of the falls!!

shirley said...

Totally worth the hike - so beautiful! I hope you get to walking better soon so you can get back.

bas van Es said...

Een geweldig mooi gebied met prachtige watervallen.

Juliana said...

Shot #8 is so LOVEly!
WOnderful!

xoxo, Juliana | PJ’ Happies :) | PJ’ Ecoproject

jeannettestgermain said...

Love this and all your pics - tanks for taking us on tour! And it so much reminds me on the area where I live - all the waterfalls are in Yosemite Nat. park 3 hrs. away.

Karen @ Pieces of Contentment said...

This area looks amazing Liz - so love the heart shaped pool photo!

Molly said...

Oh my love the heart shaped pool

Mollyxxx

Photo(Geo)grapher said...

Beautiful photos!

Christian Perrin said...

Gotta love your detective work, Liz - this is a beautiful place!

Are you allowed to swim there or is it strictly viewing only?

Melissa Rich said...

Oh my goodness, what a treasure! Gorgeous captures as always.

GAELLE DELANNOY said...

Wow! Your pictures are really nice! I am French but I have been living in your amazing country for 2 years now. Love Australia! Your blog is great! Thank you for sharing. One question: how long is the walk to see the heart pool? I have two young kids and I would love to show them this treasure! Gaelle

WangoTango said...

Nice pictures and nice blog allowed this cool waterfall and heart shaped pool. I hope to visit there someday. I enjoyed reading your profile and was struck by your comment about the importance of love. I have been learning about unconditional love and have found reallove.com to be insightful and very helpful in my new understanding of and practicing of unconditional love. You may want to check it out.

Janet Kan said...

Hi Liz, thank you for telling the story of Killarney Glen so beautifully, both in pictures and in words. Pat Fitzgerald (Sr) was my father. I was with him at Killarney Glen when he died on 17/08/97, aged 87. Dad would be delighted to know that people like yourself are re-discovering the beauty of Killarney Glen and Back Creek Gorge, with its 5 permanent waterfalls. There is just one small but important correction I'd like to make. Killarney Glen was, indeed, resumed by the Commonwealth Government at the request of the Army. As a result, however, it is now owned by the Commonwealth Government, not the Army or Department of Defence. The Army is currently the 'tenant' of the Commonwealth. Back Creek begins near Binna Burra, on the edge of the World Heritage listed Lamington National Park. There is not another creek in the whole of Lamington National Park that can boast 5 permanent waterfalls. Logic, and the increasing pressure of population, suggest that Killarney Glen and the whole of the Back Creek Gorge should be incorporated into Lamington National Park for the benefit of ALL Australians, for ALL time. My father died secure in his belief that people's love of the area and people power, not military might, would ultimately decide the fate of this precious natural resource. Congratulations on getting to the 'heart' of the matter, Liz! Regards, Janet Kan (nee Fitzgerald).

Janet Kan said...

My mistake, Liz! There are actually 6 permanent waterfalls on Back Creek, counting Killarney Falls at Killarney Glen. From the top of the Gorge, at Denham Reserve on Beechmont, they are: Denham Falls; Lip Falls; Cavern Falls; Rainbow Falls; Twin Falls and Killarney Falls. I hope you manage to see them all in 2016. Cheers, Janet

Steve Scott said...

I was going to take a photographer friend in there on Sunday, but when we saw more than 50 cars parked all around the access, we decided against it
:-(
The last time I had been there was peaceful with only 2 other people turning up in the area while I was there.

rob wiltshire said...

closed now permanently after the death of a young boy.

Instagram heart pool selfies turned this quiet pristine place into another rubbish filled cedar creek falls.

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