Rain in the Barrington Tops sends 'gully raker' rushing down Moonan Brook to the amazement of locals

Jerusalem Creek Falls on Thursday: Picture Ken Ken Rubeli
Jerusalem Creek Falls on Thursday: Picture Ken Ken Rubeli

WORD quickly spread around the residents of Moonan Brook on Tuesday evening that decent rainfall had finally fallen in the Barrington Tops and water was coming their way.

Ecstatic locals lined the dried-out creek bank, cameras poised, to record moment the brown lava-like liquid snaked towards them.

Known colloquially as a 'gully-raker', the head of the unstoppable flow carried tonnes of dried debris as it moved over the parched landscape.

Video: Moonan Brook Cottage

The brook had been without water for about six weeks - the first time it had ever been known to run dry.

Kathleen Hobson, who manages Moonan Cottage, was among those who recorded the extraordinary sight.

"We were alerted by a farmer upstream, where there had been flash flooding," she said.

"People were so excited to see it coming."

The event was triggered by 150mm of rain that fell over a short space of time in the Barrington Tops on Tuesday.

Here it comes: The gully raker makes its way down Moonan Brook to the delight of locals on Tuesday. Picture: Fiona Coddington

Here it comes: The gully raker makes its way down Moonan Brook to the delight of locals on Tuesday. Picture: Fiona Coddington

The Bureau of Meteorology's website registered a vertical spike the moment just before 6pm on Tuesday that water flowed over the Moonan Brook sensor.

The gauge jumped from 0.1 metres to a metre within less than a minute.

Water was still flowing through the brook on Thursday.

"We are just hoping there will be some more rain," Ms Hobson said.

"It's just been heart-wrenching watching farmers go from hand feeding cattle to trying to find water for them."

Unstoppable: The head of the flow was full of dried debris. Picture: Fiona Coddington

Unstoppable: The head of the flow was full of dried debris. Picture: Fiona Coddington

Fiona Coddington, who lives on a cattle farm at Moonan Brook, said the water was welcome respite from the ongoing drought.

"It has been horrid. It is still dry, except for the brook, which is a better than nothing," she said.

Rainfall, although not as intense as that which fell above Moonan Brook, also fell on the other side of the Barrington Plateau on Tuesday.

But is was enough to send a trickle through Jerusalem Falls Creek, which has been dry since late November.

"It won't last unless the rain continues," explained Brandon Grove resident Ken Rubeli, who recorded 19mm in his rain gauge in 24 hours from Wednesday morning.

"Jerusalem Creek Falls has a large relatively flat basin feeding into it.

"That basin has soaked up nearly all of this rain and so the falls is no more than drips today."

Despite the welcome downpour, hot weather is expected to return to the area in coming days.

Picture Ken Ken Rubeli

Picture Ken Ken Rubeli