08/01/2005 - report - photos - Bell Creek Canyon track notes
Participants: Tom Brennan, Jonathan Potts
I had the well thought out plan of heading to Dumbano Creek, which I had wanted to visit for some time. Unfortunately the rocky 1097 Hill on the Dumbano fire road and my car didn't get along so well and we were forced to retreat to Bell Creek. So that meant a fairly latish start, and we headed down to the Du Faur Creek crossing, where there was a veritable traffic jam. They all seemed to be doing Du Faur Creek, although I wondered why they were starting there instead of further upstream which has some of the best bits of canyon.
The climb out was trickier than I expected, but we picked up a track after the difficult bits, only to lose it again near the top of the next hill. After some scrub bashing we found it again, and then veered off down to a tributary of a tributary, which had a couple of short bits of canyon in it. The tributary was good, with a log climb and quite a long twisted section before reaching Bell Creek.
As other people have said, the water in Bell Creek feels like it comes from the bowels of the earth, and I can heartily agree. The canyon is quite beautiful, but some of the long cold swims are quite testing! There were a number of different sections of canyon, and some challenging little climb downs in between. I didn't end up taking many photos as most of the best shots were from the middle of long cold pools.
The last bit to the 'Gambie was a bit scrubby, and then we headed quickly to the beach at the exit for a late lunch. A very nice but chilly canyon.