Outback MagazineOutback Magazine


Canoeing the ClarenceCanoeing the Clarence

There are few better ways to explore the rugged backcountry of New England Ranges than by canoe and the Clarence River provides as much fishing as adventure as you could want.

Story and photos Alistair McGlashan

With a stroke of the paddle the Canadian canoe glides successfully through the last of the rapids and out onto a huge pool. The surface is dead calm, mirroring the surroundings, perfectly creating a surreal environment. A large distinct granite ledge runs almost the entire length of the pool, while a mixture of tussocks and tea tree line the opposite bank. The pool itself is strewn with huge granite boulders that jut out of the water like ancient statues.

Massive hills, lined with eucalypts and the occasional pocket of rainforest, tower overhead, as though they are reaching up into the crimson late afternoon sky. Slowly drifting along with the current swirling around you can't help but enjoy the magical solitude that this wild river offers.

The Clarence River has the largest catchment of any river in northern NSW, covering some 22, 660 square kilometres. With its headwaters in the McPherson Ranges in Queensland, it carves a path southeast through the granite-lined ridges of the Great Dividing Range into northern New South Wales. Story end

Full story Issue 32 Dec 2003/Jan 2004

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