30 Minute Waterfall Discovery
- Duration: 30 Minutes (approx.)
- Location: Albion Park Rail, NSW
- Product code: MOUNT30
- Only minutes flying time from base to the cliff faces of the mountain escarpment
- A packed 30 minute schedule of spectacular mountain and ocean views
- Rainforest, cliff faces, gorges and chasms of the Great Dividing Range.
- Spectacular Carrington and Gerringong Falls
- Lush mountain foothills and the quaint country village of Jamberoo
- Views of Lake Illawarra and the golden beaches of the South Coast
- The unique thrill of a helicopter take-off and landing
- Illawarra Fly
- Jamberoo Mountain
- Barren Grounds Nature Reserve
- Gerringong Falls
- Budderoo National Park
- Upper Kangaroo Valley
- Carrington Falls
- Macquarie Pass
- Calderwood Valley
- Headsets are available for all passengers inside the helicopter so that they can talk to eachother and share the experience while flying.
- Feel free to engage your friendly pilot for his informed narrative and commentary
- Customers should allow 1 hour in total for the whole experience including check-in, safety briefing, photo opportunity around the helicopters, boarding, flight time and then disembarking after flight.
- Free tea and coffee facilities, as well as a comfortable viewing lounge overlooking the helipad, is available for all passengers as well as for family and friends spectating on the ground.
- Safety is paramount. All safety processes and procedures as required by Touchdown Helicopters and the governments Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) are strictly adhered to in all aspects of conducting this scenic flight.
Detailed Tour Description
After take off from the Illawarra Regional Airport and as we track towards the escarpment of the Great Dividing Range, keep a lookout for the tree top walking platform and viewing tower of the Illawarra Fly. Give a wave to the tourists as you rise up and over the escarpment ridgeline to reveal the mountain top plateau of the Budderoo National Park.
Its worth taking a look toward the coastline at this point. The ocean and beaches provide a stunning backdrop contrasting in mood and colour when compared to the infinite expanse of eucalyptus stretching out below. Turning south we continue to follow the rocky cliff edges of the Great Dividing Range towards Jamberoo mountain and the ancient bushlands of Barren Grounds Nature Reserve.
Flying over Cooks Nose walking track, next on the itinerary is the beautiful Gerringong Falls, a 180m vertical drop as the Gerringong Creek plummets over the cliff edge and down onto the rocky riverbed below. Visiting the falls is a must for the avid and intrepid hiker. But if you want to venture to the valley below the falls then be prepared for a long day out trying to find the "secret passage" to the bottom. Much better to sit back in your seat in the comfort of your helicopter and take some photo's from overhead instead.
Your flight continues along the mountain ridgeline towards the picturesque Upper Kangaroo Valley. Looking down below you will see the lush river valley, carved by the Upper Kangaroo Valley River. The valley is still home to historic homesteads and communities and also includes the award winning Yarrawa Estate Vineyard. No stopping for a tipple today though.
As we follow the Upper Kangaroo Valley River, the valley closes in and terminates at Carrington Falls. A popular tourist spot, well known not only for the twin streams that tumble over it precipice to make Carrington Falls, but also for the swimming lagoons a couple of hundred meters upstream. The Blue Pool particularly, is very popular in the summer months for locals wanting to cool off. The creek changes levels at this point creating a 5 meter high waterfall which is perfect to stand under on a hot day. From the air, Carrington Falls is formidable. The top is about 550 meters above sea level and the pool at the base is 160m below. The dramatic chasm the falls has created is very narrow with sheer cliff walls on either side. Whether standing on the ground at the lookout overlooking the falls or sitting in your helicopter seat, looking down from the air you'll be impressed by one of natures marvels.
From Carrington Falls we start to meander back towards base taking a diversion over Macquarie Pass National Park. The pass itself is one of the few traffic routes connecting inland NSW to the Illawarra. It is believed the pass was created based on an old traditional tribal path used by the local Wodi Wodi aborigines. The mountain pass cuts through ancient rainforest and in many locations, after seasonal rainfalls, the waterfalls and flowing creeks consume the mountain pass making it very hard and dangerous to drive through. All part of the fun for life in the Illawarra.
As you fly overhead the national park, just about visible amongst the rainforest, the eucalyptus trees, the kapoks and the strangler figs is the tumbling Macquarie Rivulet. There are some glorious waterholes found here which have been carved into the sandstone by the waterfalls over hundreds and thousands of years. Not that well known, even amongst the locals, the area is becoming increasingly popular due to the canyoning tours which occasionally swim, float and jump their way down the pools, chasms and waterfalls.
As we continue back to base overflying Calderwood Valley and Marcshall Mount the full majesty of the Illawarra again stretches out before us. A land trapped between the mountains and the sea and home to those of us lucky enough to live here.