Gargantuan

January 16th, 2013

When the lake level breaches the threshold of this structure, the sound must be unimaginable.  A volume of water the area of the lake surface, dropping a hundred metres vertically before blasting through the massive tunnel beyond the dam wall.

I knew this place was in the middle of nowhere, but I don’t think I really appreciated how long it would take to drive that last push through the mountains.  Miserably winding alpine roads were an unpleasant change from the long stretches of high-speed highway, with more wildlife on the roads than ever.  A necessarily late afternoon timing meant kangaroos bouncing suicidally into the road, eager to join their smashed relatives across the bitumen.  The final fifty kilometre loop of undulating dirt at least let me pretend I was a rally driver for a bit.

On finally arriving, though, with the funnel mouth easing into view, it was worth it, and worth having ventured so far from civilisation in general (I don’t think ski resorts count as civilisation).  Thumbing its nose at geography, creating a new topography, this structure is something truly worthy of awe.

I think my own thoughts were something like “wow, this is really big.”

The classic approach to this place is to abseil in, which really would be something, but I was travelling light and had no such gear on hand.  Lesson learned: don’t leave home without everything you own.

Curiosity satisfied, and alpine roads quickly becoming a memory, I was left with a thought: Australia has two of these spillways.  I plotted a route to the other.

7 Responses to “Gargantuan”

  1. Anonymouson 16 Jan 2013 at 9:33 am

    Without abseiling gear I guess you used the non classical approach. A Macca’s tray.

  2. Svenon 16 Jan 2013 at 4:25 pm

    You haven’t lived until you’ve hit a spillway on a Macca’s tray.

  3. Alexon 17 Jan 2013 at 12:41 am

    This looks a lot like another such place I’ve visited. And I prefer winding alpine roads to straight highways :P

  4. Sledgyon 19 Jan 2013 at 8:26 am

    Maaaaan when you gonna swing by my joint n grab me for one of your trips Meta? :-( Where’s the love

  5. Kimon 03 Feb 2013 at 12:35 am

    wonderful!

  6. Kimon 03 Feb 2013 at 12:36 am

    you’d definitely feel so very small in the scale of things

  7. Svenon 05 Feb 2013 at 11:52 am

    Sledgy, you have Good Ideas.

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