Happy Valley is only a short drive from Linton and holds many childhood memories of summer days spent at the river. Over the last 10 years, the river has grown in popularity with campers as a sort of retreat. With the beauty of the river so conveniently placed in the heart of the bush, it’s not hard to see why.
To get to the river, we would cross the Happy Valley crossing, which is well-known for its tendency of flooding. If the weather allowed us, we would cross the crossing and turn left down an old dirt road.
To the unaware eye, all that lay ahead was a clearing and a shallow river, nothing more than a large pond. But, the real magic was across and beyond the tiny river.
We would walk through the shallow water, esky and bogey boards in hand, and along the short stretch of washed, rounded white stones to the part of the river that was deep enough for swimming.
We would spend the day at the river, uninterrupted, basking in the sunlight that managed to seep through the tops of the tall gum trees and listening to the kookaburras sing for more days like it.
Sometimes we would bring our dogs, Minty and Barney. Neither of them particularly liked swimming so I’d put them on the bogey boards instead.
The river at Happy Valley is one I will always remember fondly. It reminds me of hot summer days eating curried egg sandwiches and swimming amongst the reeds that I once thought concealed crocodiles. It reminds me of my family’s happiness at the opportunity to spend an amazing summer day together. Happy Valley is indeed a very happy place.