Gurrungutch the Great Giant Eel

Little-Blowhole-great-giant-eel1Gurrungutch, the Great Giant Eel, is known by different names to many Aboriginal people.

This Dreaming story has been passed down to me by generations of my Aboriginal elders. Tharawal Illawarra man, Aaron Broad

Gurrungutch dwelled in nearby caves and is associated with the blowholes in Kiama, as well as with the Shoalhaven River, Minnamurra River, Lake Illawarra, Windang and other areas. Bonara and Jenora were sisters. They were told not to swim too far north of Bombo Headland in a place now known as The Gap, as this was where Gurrungutch used to clean and remove his old skin.

The sisters ignored the advice and went into the gadthu (water) at The Gap. When they were caught by Gurrungutch, 
they screamed for their babamurra (father) who was maranji (fishing) nearby.

Their babamurra went towards the screaming and saw Gurrungutch with his daughters. He spoke to Gurrungutch, pleading for the girls’ to be forgiven.Ignoring his pleas, Gurrungutch spun around and around, and turned the sisters into stone with his breath. Today Bonara and Jenora are known as Cathedral Rocks and are located just north of Bombo Headland.

Aboriginal people named nearby Bonara and Jenora falls in memory of the two girls. The waterfalls represent tears of sorrow. It is said that when the waterfalls are in full flow, Gurrungutch is about.

Little Blowhole Landcare in partnership with Boolarng Nangamai Aboriginal Art & Culture Studio proudly welcome you to this peaceful place.

MURAL DESIGN: Jodie Stewart and Aaron Broad 
SCULPTURAL CHAIR: Noel Lonesborough, Debbie Callaghan and Kelli Ryan
Thank you to all volunteers and partners who are involved in making our environment a healthy place.

This project is supported by Landcare Illawarra, through funding from the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country.

This plaque is one of many found around the district. The plaques discribe the history of their locations. They were commissioned by Kiama Council in 2009.

If you had seen them around, you are welcome to have a look at the collection of plaques in the district.