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The Explorers Tree is a Blue Mountains Ash (Eucalyptus oreades) tree located at Explorers Hill (also described as Pulpit Hill), about 5 km west of Katoomba, New South Wales, Australia.

Explorers tree
Blaxland's Tree, Katoomba.jpg
Explorers Tree, Katoomba
Coordinates33°42′13″S 150°17′27″E / 33.70360°S 150.29077°E / -33.70360; 150.29077

It is well known as the tree on which Gregory Blaxland, William Lawson and William Charles Wentworth, the explorers who achieved the first known successful crossing of the Blue Mountains of New South Wales by European settlers, carved their initials in 1813.[1][2]

ControversyEdit

The claim that the explorers carved their initials into the tree is not universally supported.[3][4]

DamageEdit

The tree died in the 1950s, but the stump of the tree, about 3 metres high and smeared with concrete, remains, located adjacent to the Great Western Highway. The stump is protected from the weather and vandalism by a roof and a fence.[1]

In 2005, the tree was subject to an arson attack. The tree was slightly charred.[5]

In 2012, a car crashed into the tree base from the highway and severely damaged its stone wall foundations & the roof.[6]

Site RenovationEdit

In August 2018, a state government heritage grant was awarded to Blue Mountains City Council to preserve what is left of the tree, as well as provide a better understanding of the place including Aboriginal perspectives.[6]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Katoomba". Blue Mountains Australia. Retrieved 28 May 2013.
  2. ^ "Explorers tree". New South Wales Heritage Database. Office of Environment and Heritage.
  3. ^ "Explorers Tree". Blue Mountains City Council. Retrieved 28 May 2013.
  4. ^ Low, John. "The Marked Explorer's Tree". Six Foot Track Marathon. Archived from the original on 26 July 2007. Retrieved 28 May 2013.
  5. ^ "Explorers Tree charred in arson attack". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 5 November 2019.
  6. ^ a b Curtin, Jennie. "The Tree or not to be - that is the $100,000 question". Blue Mountains Gazette. Retrieved 5 November 2019.