The village of Tarana, located in the beautiful Tarana Valley, is a scenic thirty-minute drive from Lithgow.
This small village is home to beautiful bushwalks, great fishing and plenty of history.
Millions of years ago, seismic events caused magma to push upwards through the earth’s crust. After cooling underground, and over many eons, the softer rock in the Tarana area has weathered and eroded to reveal a distinctive granite ridge comprised of thousands of boulders in fantastic shapes and sizes.
The best way to experience this outstanding geomorphology is to visit Evans Crown Nature Reserve.
Located 3 kilometres Southeast of Tarana, the reserve comprises 425 hectares of diverse flora and fauna, and spectacular towering granite rock formations.
To the Wiradjuri Aboriginal people, the area holds a special significance. As a compass point for travel and as part of sacred songlines, this was also an important ceremonial place for initiations and corroboree and continues to be a place of importance. Many visitors report a feeling or a presence as they walk among the huge lichen encrusted granite sentinels of this ancient landscape.
Evans Crown is named after explorer and Deputy Surveyor George William Evans. After the initial crossing of the Blue Mountains by the explorers Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson in 1813, Governor Macquarie sent George Evans across the Blue Mountains into the Wiradjuri nation of central western New South Wales to confirm the findings.
On December 1st, 1813, Evans wrote in his diary: “My course is down to the Riverlett; it appears to lead me north if west. On the north side of it at this place is a remarkable sugar loaf hill having a stone peak of it, which I named after myself. I am more pleased with this country every day; it is a great extent of grazing land…and well watered by running streams in almost every valley.”
“The Crown” is 1104 metres above sea level. The walk to the top amongst the granite tors is well worth it.
The pretty and rural hamlet of Sodwalls is located near Tarana and has important historic significance. Sodwalls was named for a sod walled house that was built for troopers between 1827 and 1829.
You can still find surviving remnants of Cox’s original road to Bathurst at Sodwalls. The single track Main Western Railway reached Sodwalls and Tarana in 1872, along a fairly direct route from Rydal. There were a number of steep grades and crossings of Solitary Creek. To remedy these difficulties, a deviation was constructed in 1906 which involved a longer route with reduced grades. This duplication was completed in 1915. The old route features several viaducts, the longest being the four arched “No.6 Viaduct”.
Tarana is also home to the Heritage listed Tarana Railway Station which was opened in 1872.
Adjacent to the Main Western Line at Tarana was once a quarry owned by New South Wales Railways. For many decades Tarana granite was quarried and crushed. It was then used as the platform surface for all stations in New South Wales which did not have an asphalt seal.
Pink Tarana granite also has cultural and economic significance. It was used extensively as monumental building stone in New South Wales.
Examples of its use include the Sydney Opera House and the exterior cladding of the Anzac Memorial in Hyde Park, Sydney.
There are both private and public camping areas available in the area.
Flat Rock camping ground, adjacent to the Fish River, is a great spot for a picnic, or even some fishing. As a tributary of the upper Macquarie River, the Fish River is considered a General Trout Stream under NSW fishing regulations. It is a great place to try your luck fishing for Brown Trout.
Stay a little longer to enjoy all there is on offer in the Tarana Valley.