Jenolan Caves

Trip Start Oct 01, 2012
Trip End Oct 31, 2012

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Flag of Australia  , New South Wales,
Saturday, October 6, 2012

After an excellent breakfast at the guesthouse in Katoomba we left for the Jenolan Caves which is located about an hour and a half away. The road in once you left the main highway was very winding and narrow with many sharp corners which made for some exciting driving. The last eight kilometres into the caves is straight downhill down a road that narrows to one lane at places as you go down the side of a cliff to the valley floor below. Once we arrived we walked around and explored the surrounding area before our cave adventure began. We met our two guides who got us and the others in our group suited up in caving and rappelling gear. They took us up to the start of our tour which was a rappel into a sink hole entrance to the caves. After that they took us through a maze in the cave system that had us crawling at times through holes that were a pretty tight squeeze to get through. It was tonnes of fun. All that time that we spent crawling through vessels at work paid off.

Once our caving was finished we checked into our room at the lodge located at the caves themselves. The room wasn't the greatest but since we didn't have to leave it left us lots of time for exploring once all the tour busses left. We went down to the Blue Lake, a small reservoir that was built at the caves to generate power. We were told that there were a few resident platypus that lived there and to look for bubbles. This proved to be difficult to do in a pretty good rain storm but after a little patience we were able to spot one swimming around. We couldn't get close enough for a good picture even with Gina's good camera as they are not that big and they are only at the surface for a few seconds before diving under. It is very rare to see them in the wild so Gina was particularly excited.

After supper we booked ourselves a mysteries, legends and ghost tour through the caves. We both really enjoyed it as our biggest fear was that it was going to be cheesy but it wasn't. Our guide took us through the caves in the dark with only these small lanterns that they provided and told us stories of mysterious things that people have seen or heard in the caves. He was an excellent story teller which made it better and we got to see many parts of the caves that the regular tours don't get to see.
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