What a View!
Trip Start Aug 24, 2011
41Trip End Apr 01, 2012
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We went to the Katoomba Scenic World which a popular privately owned tourist attraction in the mountains ("Click on the Video below to see our ride down). The Scenic Railway is the steepest cable-driven funicular railway in the world, with a steepest incline of 52 degrees contained within a total incline distance of 415 metres. It was originally constructed for a coal and oil shale mining operation in the Jamison Valley in the 1880s, in order to haul the coal and shale from the valley floor up to the escarpment above. From 1928 to 1945 it carried coal during the week and Passengers at weekends
Some History of the Area:
When Europeans arrived in Australia, the Blue Mountains had already been inhabited for several millennia by the Gundungurra people. The Gundungurra creation story of the Blue Mountains tells that Dreamtime creatures Mirigan and Garangatch, half fish and half reptile, fought an epic battle which scarred the landscape into the Jamison Valley.
European settlers initially considered that fertile lands lay beyond the mountains, as was China in the belief of many convicts, but that this didn't matter much, since the mountains were impassable. This idea was, to some extent, convenient for local authorities. An "insurmountable" barrier would deter convicts from trying to escape in that direction.
The Greater Blue Mountains Area was unanimously listed as a World Heritage Area by UNESCO on 29 November 2000. The area totals roughly 10,000 square kilometres (3,900 sq mi), including the Blue Mountains, Kanangra-Boyd, Wollemi, Gardens of Stone, Yengo, Nattai and Thirlmere Lakes National Parks, plus the Jenolan Caves Karst Conservation Reserve.