Volcanoes are commonly perceived and portrayed as violent and destructive geothermal events. But the creative powers of lava under pressure are plain to see even before you set foot on a walking track in Warrumbungle National Park, in central north New South Wales. The grand scale of this artistry becomes clear treading the 14.5km Grand High Tops loop.
How could you not stare at the “look at me” remnants of a shield volcano that was active about 15 million years ago? This volcanic monster is estimated to have been more than 1km high and 50km in diameter.
Most spectacular of all the lava spires, domes and dykes is the Breadknife. Fashioned when molten lava worked into a fissure in sub-surface rock, this dyke is 600m long and 2-4 metre wide. Time has exposed the stony blade for all to see but only walkers to touch!
Warrumbungle is a Gamilaroi Aboriginal word meaning crooked mountains. The steep walk, with multiple steps, to the Grand High Tops offers an impressive high view over these fabulously crooked mountains.