Gardens of Stone National Park

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Gardens of Stone National Park
IUCN category II (national park)
Gardens of Stone National Park is located in New South Wales
Gardens of Stone National Park
Gardens of Stone National Park
State New South Wales
Nearest town or city Lithgow
Coordinates 33°9′16.6″S 150°2′27.5″E / 33.154611°S 150.040972°E / -33.154611; 150.040972Coordinates: 33°9′16.6″S 150°2′27.5″E / 33.154611°S 150.040972°E / -33.154611; 150.040972
Area 150.1 km2 (58.0 sq mi)
Established 30 November 1994 (1994-11-30)
Managing authorities National Parks and Wildlife Service (New South Wales)
Website Gardens of Stone National Park

Gardens of Stone is a national park in the Australian state of New South Wales, 125 km northwest of Sydney. With an area of 15,010 ha, it is part of the Greater Blue Mountains Area World Heritage Site.[1] It borders on the western edge of Wollemi National Park and is bounded to the west by the Castlereagh Highway between the towns of Capertee and Ben Bullen, and to the north by the road between Capertee and Glen Davis. The National Park is named for the natural stone pagodas within its boundaries.[1]

History[edit]

The Newnes Plateau region was proposed for conservation in 1932 as part of a Greater Blue Mountains National Park by the National Parks and Primitive Areas Council.[1] Lobbying for protecting the area increased after the establishment of Wollemi National Park in 1979.[2] The National Parks Association proposed its extension westwards in 1984, which developed into a detailed proposal of an 18,030 ha park in 1993, which was ultimately successful.[1] The Gardens of Stone National Park was established in 1994;[2] however, the initial park only covered 11,780 hectares, omitting areas which contain coal deposits. It was later enlarged to 15,080 hectares.[3] Environmentalist groups seek to protect more of the surrounding area, which includes pagodas, canyons, healthland and elevated swamps.[2]

Geography[edit]

The most prominent features of the park are the sandstone pagoda landscapes and cliffs and canyons.[4] Limestone outcrops, karsts and elevated swamps are other unusual features.[1]

Flora and fauna[edit]

A total of 423 native plant species have been recorded in the park in 30 different plant communities. Most of the park is covered in open forest or woodland dominated by eucalypts. In the west of the park, there are ironbark (Eucalyptus fibrosa and E. crebra) and yellow box (Eucalyptus melliodora) woodlands that grow on clay loam and are a habitat for the rare regent honeyeater and turquoise parrot. There is white box (Eucalyptus albens) woodland in the southwest and scribbly gum (Eucalyptus rossii and E. sparsifolia) woodland on the park's eastern borders.[1]

The plant and animal communities of the pagoda formations are fragile and easily irreversibly damaged by human activity. Collection of bush rocks for gardens and landscaping removes habitat for reptiles.[1]

A view over Gardens of Stone National Park from Pearsons Lookout

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g National Parks and Wildlife Service (June 2009). "Gardens of Stone National Park: Plan of Management". Office of Envrionment and Heritage. Department of Environment and Climate Change, NSW Government. Retrieved 4 June 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c Blue Mountains Conservation Society (2011). "Gardens of Stone National Park". Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Experience. NSW National Parks & Wildlife Service. Retrieved 4 June 2013. 
  3. ^ Washington, Haydn G; Wray, Robert AL (2011). "The Geoheritage and Geomorphology of the Sandstone Pagodas of the North-western Blue Mountains Region (NSW)". Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 132: 131–43. ISSN 0370-047X. 
  4. ^ Office of Environment and Heritage (26 March 2013). "Gardens of Stone National Park: Plants, animals and landscape". Environment and Heritage. NSW Government. Retrieved 5 June 2013. 

External links[edit]