Jenolan Caves

The formation of the Jenolan Caves

The Jenolan Caves formed by rainwater falling from the sky, and carbon dioxide dissolving the water, causing it to be acidic. As the water seeps through the soil it becomes acidic, in nature. The water then enters the fractures in the rock dissolving the rock as it progresses. Fractures are widened over time and as underground spaces, there is further cave development surrounding rock collapses.

The description of the Jenolan Caves

The Jenolan caves within the Blue Mountain, are a large network of caves of multi-level passages and the complex is still undergoing exploration, The caves grounds are limestone, and it is the oldest discovered open cave in the world. There are 10 caves in the network, such as the Lucas, River, Chifley and Imperial Caves.

The Dreamtime Creation of the Jenolan Caves

The Dreamtime story of the Jenolan Caves is known as Gurangatch and Mirrigan; Gurangatch was a Dreamtime creature who was half fish, and reptile and lived in a deep water hole. Mirrigan was a hunter who was fixated on spearing Gurangatch, they often battle, with neither emerging victorious. This caused Mirrigan to resort to poisoning the water, in which Gurangatch lived in. Gurangatch however successfully escaped by burrowing deep within the water hole, which resulted in the water flowing after him. Mirrigan however, still fixated on spearing Gurangatch, continuously attempted to battle Gurangatch, and with each fight, Gurangatch would burrow in the mountains to escape, creating an enormous cave. Eventually, Gurangatch escaped the labyrinth of the mountain by burrowing right through the mountains. With this, the Jenolan caves were created.