Natural Arches

There are a lot of natural sandstone arches in the creek systems near Lithgow. The Wollangambe, Dumbano, Bungleboori and Nayook systems all have some really nice examples.

Some are small and pretty others large and grand. I thought I’d put a page together with photos from some of the more impressive ones we’ve visited.

Click on the images to expand them



Clarence Arches.

There are a few arches at Clarence that first came to attention when the railway was being surveyed for the 10 tunnels diviation.  The first is a delicate looking arch called the “Devils Bridge” which spans about 10m however the legalities of accessing the land around it are questionable so not many people get to visit it any more.

Prior to the roof collapsing it must have been an impressive cave, possibly one of the bigger sandstone caves in the mountains. The arch that roof collaps left behind though is light, airy, and a long way up. It’s pretty cool.


John Barnes supplied this image from 1923 devils bridge

What an awesome shot!



And this one from 1910 is so awesome. They were brave or stupid or both. They would have spent a bit of time clearing scrub too to erect the tents


Near by is another arch that’s on the other end of the delicate and airy scale.

Just 40-50m off the train line in between a couple of the tunnels you’d see it out the train window if you knew where to look. I have no idea if it has a name, I just call it Clarence number 2 arch.

Dargan Arch

Dargan Arch is probably the best known example at the moment due to a high social media profile.  It’s fairly easy to get to and very photogenic. It spans maybe 9ms


South Bungleboori Arch

This arch is tucked into a bend high up in the Southern Branch of the Bungleboori. The creek does a big S bend around the arch. I’d guess that at some point in the past the creek lapped up into the cave, but that’s a guess.


North Bungleboori Arch

Tucked up into an alcove of the North Branch of the Bungleboori high up in it’s head waters this one goes by a few different names, eg Pterodactyl cave and more recently it’s been called the Howling arch by the Bush Explorers. It’s a grand old arch spanning around 12m and the square corners make it look almost architectural from the upstream side.  First recorded reference to this one comes from the late 50s

Gooches arch

Just below Gooches Crater, this is more a high, shallow cave with a sky light and narrow cracks separating it from the solid wall behind but it is bloody impressive.


Newnes Natural Arch

Perched high above the main camp ground at Newnes this arch has a different feel to most of the others and offers great views down over the campers. The wedge shaped bridge spans around 5m but is very high up in the cliff line

The Arch. Arch Canyon

Arch Canyon is not so much a canyon but a steep tributary of the Bungleboori. 4 short abseils  are needed to negotiate the creek as it drops through the cliff line. It’s a fair walk for a soso canyon but the arch up above the junction with the ‘Boori is spectacular. 




Marks Tomb

Marks Tomb is a funky arch/multi entrance cave thingie off the Wonderland track at Medlow Bath. Mark Foy, builder of the Hydro Magestic, often said he’d like to be buried here. He wasn’t but it kept the name, Marks Tomb.


Ronald Mcdonald Cave. AKA twin arch cave

An interesting double room cave with a window between the rooms and a large arch out the side. Situated high above Cairn creek, not far off Glowworm tunnel rd.


click to enlarge

Kangaroo Passage. AKA Tunnel 55

This is a cool erosion tunnel in the base of the cliffs behind Angus Place, above Kangaroo creek. Made cooler by the surveyors mark carved into the choss under the bulk head

Click to enlarge


Walls Edge/Mirrorball Arch

A nice little arch sitting on the cliff line above the Classic Blue Mts Climb, Mirrorball

It looks bigger from a distance


Walls Cave Arch

Greeves creek runs through this  tunnel like arch near Walls Cave at BlackHeath



Canyon Arches

The narrow canyon systems of the Blue Mtns and Wollemi lend themselves to delicate arch formations and there are some very nice ones around.

Below are some examples

Waterfall of Moss Arch

A cool little arch you absiel through when descending Waterfall of Moss canyon

Rocky Creek Arch

There are lots of chock stones forming bridges and tunnel in the narrows of Rocky Creek canyon but this arch high up in the walls is something special

Rocky creek canyon is so spectacular it is easy to miss this arch 20 or 30 meters up

Alctraz Arch

This one is different again. Is it an Arch? Um I don’t know but it is cool. The erosion effects of the waterfall have carved out a deep plunge pool, creating a hole around 15m deep and 5m diameter. Eventually the water found a weaker layer in the rock and ate it’s way out.

Escaping from Alcatraz


Under the Alcatraz Arch

Luna Park Arches

Bridge Canyon, Steep Creek Archs

Bubble Bath arches

Twilight Arch

Windows Arch

Arethusa Arch

Looking Glass Arch

Random Canyon Arches