Sunday, July 10, 2011

2011 Trip: Horizontal Falls

Sunday 10th July:
Today it was our floatplane tour to the Horizontal Falls. We had booked with Horizontal Falls Seaplane Adventures before we left home and just as well, now fully booked.

Our flight out from Derby was in a float equipped Cessna Caravan turbo-prop.

Over the tidal mud flats north of Derby. Fascinating patterns in the mud. 

We got a bird's eye view of our destination on the way in.

After a smooth landing we tied up to a couple of flat pontoons. There was also a houseboat there with accomodation as they do overnight stays as well.

A very enjoyable cup of coffee before we boarded our boat. 

Seating was astride a padded cushion like riding a horse. The boat was powered by two 300HP Yamaha 4 stroke outboards.

This was the first passage and just an introduction to the real horizontal falls. The water rushes out of the captive lakes as the tide drops.

Heading towards the narrower passage which produces the greatest drop in water level and the appearance of a horizontal waterfall.

The surging rushing water produces whirlpools and uprises of water that can be really dangerous and catch the inexperienced off guard.

Here we were sitting stationary against the outflow of water. The inner water level was about 1.5 metres higher than the downstream side. Despite the fact that our boat was stationary the speedo showed 37kph and the water depth was 43 metres.

We actually drove the boat uphill on water.

This is from the inside of the high side looking down the falls.

Awesome power. Two 300 HP Yamaha 4 stroke outboards. The acceleration was staggering.

After lunch (barramundi BBQ) we explored a few more little bays.

I think he thought we were Meals on Wheels.

The trip home took us over the many islands of the Buccaneer Archipelago.

And a barramundi farm. 

The turquoise waters of the Kimberley.


  1. Isn't it the coolest adventure tour ever? So glad you guys got to do it. Photos look awesome :)

  2. Nice pics, but where are the bikini girls?

  3. Glenda8:33 am

    Hi Steve & Robyn, I am really enjoying reading your trip stories. You can tick this one off the to do list now. Wishing your more happy adventure. Love to Ken. Cheers glenda

  4. Glenda8:34 am

    Oops and love to Lyne also.

  5. Great Photos Dad, I would have like to hear the twin 300's on at full rip on the boat!, Makes one want to snatch it and sell up and live out of a caravan for a few years doesn't it.

    Travel Safe - Michael

  6. Hi Steven and Robyn,
    Great report - haven't been there yet! It is on our to do list :)

    Cheers Dave & Shell
    (North Carolina) ATM :)

  7. Barrimundi... oh, now you've made my mouth water. Best fish ever, anywhere!

    I've been to Derby, but haven't gone on this tour, it sure looks great! Loved your photos!