Natural Tasmania: Canyons and Gorges

Highest Mountains (height)

Mount Ossa: 1,614 m
Legges Tor, Ben Lomond: 1,572 m
Giblins Peak, Ben Lomond: 1,569 m
Mt Pelion West: 1,560 m
Barn Bluff: 1,559 m
Cradle Mountain: 1,545 m
Markham Heights, Ben Lomond: 1,569 m
Hmilton Crags, Ben Lomond: 1,538 m
Stacks Bluff: 1,527 m
Smithies Peak, Bluff Cirque: 1,527 m
Mt Geryon: 1,520 m
Du Cane Range: 1,520 m
Mt Massif: 1,514 m

Other Well Known Mountains

Frenchmans Cap: 1,446 m
Mt Field West: 1,436 m
Dry's Bluff: 1,340 m
Mount Murchison: 1,275 m
Hartz Mountains: 1,254 m
Mount Roland: 1,234 m
Adamsons Peak: 1,225 m
Federation Peak: 1,224 m

The canyons and gorges featured are some of the more well known or most visited in Tasmania.

Hellyer Gorge

Hellyer Gorge and the river which flows through it is named after Henry Hellyer, an English surveyor and architect who was one of the first explorers to visit the rugged interior of the north west of Tasmania. The rainforest in Tasmania's Hellyer Gorge is considered a Gondwanan relic. The gorge has densely wooded sides rising 180 metres.

Walls of Jerusalem

The Walls of Jerusalem is situated on the western side of the extensive central plateau of Tasmania, in approximately the centre of the island. Thousands of lakes formed by an ice cap during relatively recent glaciation cover the plateau and the features known as the Walls of Jerusalem are a series of higher, craggy hills. From a distance, these peaks seem to be the dominent feature but once within the Walls, in fact, the major features are the typically U-shaped glacial valleys and pretty lakes. This relatively small but stunningly beautiful park is located on a high plateau of dolerite peaks, and features alpine vegetation and endemic conifer forests. The name Walls of Jerusalem appears on plans by surveyor James Scott dating back to 1849 and the biblical theme was taken up from the early days for park features, including Ephraims Gate, Zions Gate, Herods Gate, Pool of Bethesda, Pool of Siloam, Wailing Wall and The Temple. There are a range of walks of varying lengths that lead to its natural features.

Devil's Gullet

Devil's Gullet is one of the must-see natural attractiond on the northern rim of The Great Western Tiers Touring Route. It offers a glimpse of the remote alpine world of Tasmania’s central plateau for those unwilling or unable to see it at close range on a cross country hike. The viewing platform at the secenic lookout overhangs a sheer cliff face over 220 metres high and provides magnificent 180° views of the Fisher River Valley, a gorge before you of sheer dolerite cliffs, carved out by ice and water moving off the plateau and down the valley, shaped by ice and rain over millions of years. Directly across the valley is Clumner Bluff (1559 metres). In the distance is the vista of Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park, views to Mt. Ossa, Tasmania’s highest peak (1617 metres) which lies in the heart of Tasmania’s Central Plateau.

Ferndene Gorge

Ferndene Gorge State Reserve is nestled between the foot hills of the Dial Range, six kms south of Penguin. It is one of the region’s best kept secret places. It’s a great spot for a picnic lunch or early morning breakfast while listening to the many bird calls that sound out around this forest reserve. Like so many of Tasmania’s national park and reserve walks, as you wander along you are accompanied by the sight and sound of a beautiful, clear water bush creek running parallel with the path.

Leven Canyon

Leven Canyon has for long been a little known destination for visitots to Tasmania. Situated on the Leven River 42 km from Ulverstone, the river runs through 300-metre limestone cliffs carved through the Loongana Range, down to Bass Strait. The viewing platform offers spectacular views of Black Bluff, the canyon itself and the surrounding areas. There are other walks in the general area, as well as barbecue and picnic facilities.

Cataract Gorge

Cataract Gorge, situated a few minutes walk from the centre of Launceston, is that city's closest natural attraction. Here the South Esk River plunges through Cararact Gorge, a canyon which becomes both spectacular and noisy after heavy rain. The gorge has walks, swimming pools, a suspension foot bridge and river cruises.

King River Gorge

The West Coast Wilderness Railway operates on a 35 km old mining railway between Queenstown and Strahan through Western Tasmamia's World Heritage listed wilderness area. One of the highlights of the journey is crossing the wild King River on its way through sheer sided rainforested gorges. Ttrained guides bring to life the stories of the many historic points on the railway.

Dove Canyon, Cradle Mountain

Dove Canyon is one of the few gorges in the Cradle Maountain that can be visited with the aid of a guide. Cradle Mountain Canyons, Tasmania's first and only canyoning company, operates walks and treks, which can include waterfall jumps, abseiling and experiencing an amazing underground waterslide called The Laundry Chute.

Alum Cliffs

It is a short walk from the car park to a forest lookout perched high above the Mersey River. Here, in the heart of the Great Western Tiers, the river flows along the valley through the Alum Cliffs Gorge. Tulampanga, or Alum Cliffs, was a place of particular social and spiritual significance to Aborigines because of the ochre to be found in that area of the Gog Range. Many tribes travelled to Tulampanga to obtain this highly prized material and for them this was a sacred celebration place.