Unicorns and Rainbows ...
I must admit to being a glass half full kinda girl, always trying to look for the positive in any situation. As you may have read in my earlier posts, and like many people unfortunately, the COVID-19 Pandemic has had a devastating impact on my working career, but – and here’s the silver lining – it has given me the opportunity to get intimate not only with Sparky, but my local area. Living in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales, Australia, we are blessed with areas of outstanding natural beauty and National Parks all around us. One of those special areas is Mt Jerusalem National Park, which as it happens, is within walking and riding distance from my home – blessed indeed 😇
I had heard of Unicorn Falls, but had never had the pleasure of visiting – so one Sunday a few weeks ago, even though rain was threatening – I jumped on Sparky and off Phil and I headed to see if we could find these falls who shared its name with a beautiful and mythical beast – and being a Harry Potter tragic, I thought this was right up my alley 🦄
I have completed many hikes in Mt Jerusalem National Park, primarily from the North Chowan Road access, as it is within walking distance from home. On one particularly long hike, I walked from the National Park gate at North Chowan Road, across the top of Mt Chowan, to the National Park gate at South Chowan Road, and back – a beautiful day hike of around 18kms. Unfortunately North Chowan Road and South Chowan Road do not link up easily, the only connection is via a very steep “goat track” across the top of Mt Chowan. Unicorn Falls is located off South Chowan Road, ie, the other side of the goat track, so we decided that this would not be the best way on our eBikes, rather we would follow the road access from Uki.
I was excited to visit the area as I had recently read of the “Unicorn Falls Master Plan”, a plan developed by NSW National Parks which proposes a day use area at Unicorn Falls, along with a small campground – to form part of the Tweed Byron Hinterland Trails project – a project which would create a signature walk linking Unicorn Falls and Minyon Falls via a 45km multi day hike – providing high quality nature-based visitor experiences. The Unicorn Falls day use area would serve as the trail head for the walk. As an avid hiker as well as biker, the prospect of a multi day hike so close to home was enticing indeed – and what a way to bring much needed nature based, low impact tourism to our regional economy - bring it on !!
Unicorn Falls is located approximately 15kms south of Uki. From Kyogle Road, Uki, turn into Rowlands Creek Road, and follow the signs to Mullumbimby. The bitumen road becomes a well formed unsealed road and you soon pass the entrance to Mt Jerusalem National Park. Approximately 2.5km after you enter the Park, turn left into South Chowan Road and cross a small wooden bridge. Directly on the left after the bridge you will see a small parking area and some large boulders – this is the parking area for Unicorn Falls.
The falls are actually just a gentle cascade over rocks, but the serenity and natural beauty of the surrounding rainforest is stunning. You can explore further along the creek in both directions, however on this day, with rain forecast, we just enjoyed the serenity of this beautiful rainforest area for a short while.
And what was that about rain? Yes, down it came on our ride home – but you know the saying “you can’t have rainbows without rain” – and what could possibly be better than a day of Unicorns and Rainbows 🦄🌈