on October 19, 2006
This entry is a continuation of Kuranda Skyrail: The Barron River and Kuranda.We wandered for thirty minutes or so through the various markets and down the main street, which was absolutely packed with the throngs of tourists that we didn’t see in the markets. It started pouring rain just before we crossed the street, heading for another three advertised markets, and this was enough to deter us. We looked quite a while for a bite to eat (having left our picnic lunch in the car), and finally managed to find some reasonably priced ($2 or so) sausage rolls to tide us over before walking back to the skyrail.The ride from Kuranda to Barron Falls was much clearer than the way there, and we could even see blue sky and clouds reflected in the Barron River! We got off at Barron Falls and soon found ourselves walking along a small wooden boardwalk through the trees. As the sound of the falls grew steadily louder, we came upon some interesting historical relics - some very scary-looking ways of getting across gorges and up and down cliffs. One of them was literally a slanted ladder that you were supposed to lie down on, at a 45 degree angle, and then slowly be lowered down the cliff. I like trying new things, but seeing as there were absolutely no safety mechanisms on these, I'd probably pass! There were here from the original building of the large hydroelectric station downriver, of which Barron Falls is the source of power.There were three different lookouts to the falls, each with a different arrangement of trees blocking various parts of the falls. As I mentioned before, you could very much tell that it was the middle of the dry season, because it looked like many small mountain waterfalls I'd seen in the Blue Mountains & the Rocky Mountains, rather than the thundering sheet of water seen between December and March. We still stood there transfixed by the beauty of the clear water rolling down the rugged granite cliffs, surrounded in the brilliant green of the rainforest.At the main lookout point, there was a huge sign describing the hydroelectric plant and exactly how it works. Being an engineer, James spent the majority of our time there reading the sign, and then asking me to take a picture so he can finish reading it later. I kept myself occupied by trying to take pictures of the falls from every angle possible. I did read some of the sign, but I didn’t find the inner workings of the power plant quite as interesting as James did.This entry is continued in Kuranda Skyrail: A Rainbow, Lots of Fog, and The End.
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