A few days in Rylstone

We enjoyed a few days in the Rylstone environs and would love to return to this area one day – ideally to camp in Wollemi National Park. While I’m sure the night wildlife could be very interesting it would also be a glorious place to wake to a dawn chorus and then to enjoy all the birds around you.

Rylstone itself is an old settlement with some lovely old houses and a wood-fired bakery from which we bought the best Rye sourdough ever! In fact I persuaded Allen that we needed to purchase another loaf before we travelled on even though we hadn’t quite finished the first.

There are some lovely old stone buildings in Rylstone – this one just needs a little TLC

Ganguddy-Dunns Swamp is easily accessible from Rylstone and is well worth a visit. The natural swamps here provided a source of fresh drinking water as well as duck eggs, snake and tortoise meat for the Dabee tribe, who are part of the Wiradjuri language group. The much larger water body that exists today is the result of the Kandos Weir construction in the 1920s to supply water to the Kandos cement works and would, I imagine, have inundated the original swamps. Unfortunately there is a sad history of dreadful massacres of the Dabee people as white settlers started taking over their land from about 1819.

Driving up the valley towards the turn-off to Ganguddy-Dunn Swamp
These rock formations remind me of the Bungle Bungle Range
Evans’ Grevillea (Grevillea evansiana) listed as vulnerable
Geebung (Persoonia sp.) which has sweet edible fruit when ripe.
This handsome fellow is a Mountain Dragon Rankinia diemensis.
He was right next to the path and obligingly posed for us to take his photo.

We walked most of the way to Kandos Weir which gave us some beautiful views of the landscape around the swamp. While not a long walk there were a few steep steps and some tricky rocks to negotiate so we took our time. Most of the Spring flowering was over but there was much to admire and the walk was delightful – so many beautiful trees.

If the weather had been warmer and my attire more suitable I wouldn’t have hesitated to swim. Surrounded by such a beautiful natural landscape this clear water would be bliss in the summer and I imagine it would be quite a popular destination.
The path wound around the trees and boulders along the edge of the lake, in places quite close to the water.
A spectacular view from the high point in our walk – the contrast in foliage between Callitris species (not sure which) and the various Eucalyptus species is quite obvious.
Allen waiting for the elusive Clamorous Reed Warbler to make an appearance. Extensive areas of reeds in the shallow water provide a perfect habitat for them.

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