The time is ripe for a visit to the iconic Cootamundra canola fields as they come into bloom and colour the paddocks fluroescent yellow!

Highlights

  • Road trip!
  • Catch the Cootamundra canola fields in full bloom
  • See a part of the country that not many city-dwellers experience

 

Cootamundra's Canola Fields & The Sugar Pine Forest (NSW), Alfonso Calero, Riverina, NSW, canola flowers, tree

The Cootamundra Canola Fields

The canola fields are located on Old Gundagai Road, and Rosehill and Jugiong roads near Cootamundra. From germination to seed production, the life-cycle of a canola plant takes about 3 ½ months, depending on temperature, moisture, sunlight and soil fertility. Make sure you visit in late winter/spring to see them at their best.

Note: We can’t guarantee the flowers will be blooming, do your research before you go!

 

Cootamundra's Canola Fields & The Sugar Pine Forest (NSW), Alfonso Calero, Riverina, NSW, canola flowers

 

Flying overhead you’re likely to see planes spraying the fields. Crop dusting refers to dropping actual dust on crops, so the pilots generally prefer the term ‘aerial application’ or ‘ag application.’ Regardless, these guys are really well trained and watching them in action from a distance is quite a spectacle. However I suggest you stand back as the chemicals they drop are quite toxic and should not be breathed in!

Safety note: Please don’t enter the Canola Fields. You risk trampling the fields, ingesting pesticide, or encountering angry farmers!

 

Cootamundra's Canola Fields & The Sugar Pine Forest (NSW), Alfonso Calero, Riverina, NSW, canola flowers, dead tree

 

Cootamundra's Canola Fields & The Sugar Pine Forest (NSW), Alfonso Calero, Riverina, NSW, windmill

Essential Gear

We did this trip for photography, here’s what we brought:

  • Canon 5D Mark III
  • Carl Zeiss 18mm
  • Canon 50mm f1.2L lens.
  • Sirui T024X carbon-fibre tripod
  • Nisi Filters (10 stop, PL & 3 stop reverse soft grad)
  • MacBook Pro & Lacie Fuel Drive.
  • Wacom Bamboo tablet also works a charm for editing with Lightroom, Photoshop and Nik.
  • Head torch
  • Small reflectors
  • If there are no planes flying low you might get away with flying a drone like we did with a DJI Mavic Pro. Best to check flight path before you fly.

How To Get There

Sydney to Cootamundra is around a 4-hour drive.

Head down the Hume Highway and turn off at Jugiong.

Activities

  • Photography
  • Hiking
  • Astrophotography

Skill Level

Beginner

 

This article was originally published on Alfonso’s photography website where he posts tips and runs tour workshops around Australia and internationally.