Thursday, March 27, 2008

Hidden New England - Comboyne Plateau

Photo: Comboyne Plateau, view from Mt Gibraltar.

There is so much of New England that I have yet to visit properly. This includes the Comboyne Plateau.

When my father retired and had more time, he took to long drives. As part of this, he and mum just spent time driving around the Comboyne taking photos.

The Comboyne Plateau lies between the valleys of the Manning River to the south and the Hastings River to the north. It is about 60km south-west of Port Macquarie, 35km west of Kew and 54km north-west of Taree.

The Plateau has an area of approximately 180 square kilometres. The topography is unique; it is a volcanic plateau, ranging from 600 – 800 metres above sea level. The region has deep red basalt soils and a high rainfall. The plateau was originally covered by spectacular rainforests, but extensive clearing has left only a few pockets of remnant vegetation.

The plateau edges are surrounded by several State Forests and Reserves. Since white settlement, about 100 years ago, the region has been a prime dairy farming area. Over recent years a number of horticultural enterprises have been established. These include plantings of avocados, macadamias, blueberries and other fruits and vegetables.

Photo: Comboyne village.

Today there are approximately 800 people on the Comboyne Plateau, with less than 200 in Comboyne village.


Anonymous said...

Around 1979, I first visited "The Comboyne" as a salesman, invited to a home by one of the locals to design a new kitchen in his house.
Being a boy originally from Sydney, I was astounded to find that this bloke's home had no internal linings, and no electricity. His current kitchen consisted of a large table, and an earthenware sink stuck in one corner.
What's more, he told me that he'd never been to Sydney, which is a relatively short drive away.
The Comboyne Plateau is a beautiful area to visit, and its inhabitants are interesting people.

Jim Belshaw said...

What a great comment, anon. Now why would one of any sense go to Sydney?! In my history writing I ma exploring some off the life style questions. I know that some mod cons are actually quite new.