WOTTA CANYON – 20 November 2022
If I said to some of my canyoning friends that I was doing Wotta Canyon, they’d be forgiven for thinking “what, again?”. Yep, off to Wotta again, but in my defense, with Onni offering to lead the canyon and Anna saying “ah, nah, not doing Pilcher again” I offered them the option of Wotta & Birrabang, neither of which they’d done before (well, at least Onni, Anna’s pretty much “done” everything).
Most of us had stayed at Marcia’s for the night, so Onni, Cheryl and I set off early on Sunday morning. I slid by Katoomba and picked up an American caver, Cliff, visiting Oz for a week and trying to get in some adventures. Mind you Wotta wouldn’t be my first choice to show someone who hasn’t canyoned before, but he seemed happy with the trip. Anna caught up with us at the car park and we headed off.
The wind was ferocious as we headed along the ridge, the start of the canyon is in the valley in front of us. We took the long way around – but eventually got to the start spot (just took a little longer lol). Photo Onni.
We were soon suited up, there was a lot of discussion about whether or not we’d take wetsuits, but in the end, everyone took one, the water was rather chilly! Onni on the abseil after he’d set up the rope.
Cheryl, this would be her first canyon with us.
Our visitor Cliff, not sure he actually knew what was ahead of him, but he took everything that we threw at him with a good sense of humour.
Me on the first abseil, if you stayed to the left, you could stay dry.
Lovely ferny grotto at the bottom of the abseil.
The 2nd abseil, down into a pool of water, Onni set the rope at the right length so everyone could just drop off the end into the pool of water. Except for me who had to go down on a double rope.
Cliff on the abseil.
Cheryl on the abseil (photo Onni).
And then me on the abseil, the pool was very deep! (photo: Onni)
Cliff on the third abseil, this is pretty cool, it’s a slot that winds around to the left, very pretty.
And then we got to the 4th abseil – I’d set it up so that everyone was able to go over the edge without any trouble, it’s an overhang where you can’t get your feet on the wall (photo: Onni)
I was the last and typically had the most trouble, my Rack got stuck on the rock and it took a lot of wriggling and a butt-lift from Onni for me to get down, he took a nice photo of me though lol (Photo Onni)
After the fourth abseil, it’s a looong walk downstream to the junction of Birrabang Canyon (our exit).
This part of the canyon was constricted, but the majority of the creek was now open.
And with a lot of logs and scrub. (photo: Onni)
Some good photo opportunities (photo: Onni)
And some difficulty getting the little old lady down on climb-down! (photo: Onni)
When we got to Wotta Waterfall we had lunch and then there was a lot of fooling around on the slippery slope.
This canyon is a full body workout!
Eventually we arrived at Birrabang Canyon and started the walk upstream to our exit. Cliff was up for anything, small waterfalls that the rest of us climbed around (because they’re wet and hard to get up), Cliff, followed by Onni, tackled them all – now next time I go back there I’m going to have to do the waterfalls.
Cliff in another section that we usually skirt around.
Cheryl in one of the lovely undercut sections of Birrabang.
And then we were at the exit and it was just a case of slogging it up the hill and back to the cars!
The wildflowers were stunning.
Big thanks to Marcia who put the trip on the calendar, but then couldn’t go with us, and to Onni and Anna for joining Cheryl, Cliff and me. Wotta is often dissed by canyoners as “not much there”, but we all agreed that it was a great day out, some really nice canyon sections, yep, the scrub and fallen trees were a pain, but you soon forgot about them.
There’s nothing glamorous about bushwalking, caving or canyoning, but it sure is fun! If you’re an armchair bushwalker, someone looking for new adventures, or one of my friends who just wants to see what I’ve been up to, this site is for you, sign up to get email alerts now!