MacKenzie Falls

Quite a few drops of rain have fallen while we have been in the Grampians. And the wind has blown, and it has been chilly. (Thank you for the heater, Denise 🙂 )

The rain hasn’t really stopped us from doing anything, but it has given us a good excuse to curl up with a few good books.

The other advantage is that it has made the waterfalls run. Because Australia is such a dry continent, waterfalls aren’t guaranteed to fall. But when the rain comes the creeks just love to gush over rocks and gurgle through crannies. The Grampians seem to be a rather leaky sort of place. It must be the geology. Water seeps out from crevices and mosses just love it. Boulders can be slick and low lying areas boggy.

The water was certainly enjoying itself at MacKenzie Falls. It was so satisfying to hear the falls and see the sheets of silver cascade down.

The falls were named by an explorer, Major Mitchell, in 1836. Interestingly he tried to find out their Aboriginal name, but couldn’t, and named them after his friend Captain MacKenzie. The Jardwadjali people called them Migunang wirub (black fish floating on top of water).

MacKenzie Falls (Photo copyright: Anne Lawson, 2013)
MacKenzie Falls (Photo copyright: Anne Lawson, 2013)
The falls from the base (Photo copyright: Anne Lawson, 2013)
The falls from the base (Photo copyright: Anne Lawson, 2013)

These falls are not the Angel Falls, but after 12 years of drought I still enjoy running water in all its forms.

Falls, by definition mean a drastic change in level — there were over 250 steps to get to the bottom. I didn’t count them on the way down, but counting on the way up helped distract my brain from the complaining legs!


After falling over the edge, the creek continues to burble its way down stream. Along the bank is a very inviting path, saying “Wander on some more. See where I go after this next bend.” It could have lead me the 7kms on to Zumsteins, but I was strong and resisted. Halfway up the steps I wished I had!

Follow me - just one more corner. (Photo copyright: Anne Lawson, 2013)
Follow me – just one more bend (Photo copyright: Anne Lawson, 2013)

3 replies on “MacKenzie Falls”

Thank you for the photos! Despite having been to Mackenzie Falls twice we have never walked to the bottom. Blame the amount of steps and small children for that. No way were we carrying them back to the top, getting ourselves there would have been effort enough!
Now they are old enough we should make a trip back there so we can see them from the bottom as well.


Wow, that is quite a staircase. I love the literal-ness of the Jardwadjali people’s name for the falls. That urge to see around the next corner, or walk along a bit further never seems to take into account the walk back.. until it’s time to turn around… how far?


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