St Columba Falls, near Pyengana in Tasmania's north east, is one of Tasmania's highest waterfalls, with water plunging 90m from the Mt Victoria foothills to the valley of the South George River. The walk is on a high-quality track through cool and shady rainforest.
The water that tumbles over these falls is the reason the region became known as Pyengana. It is the Aboriginal word for 'two rivers'. These days the two rivers are called North and South George. South George flows through the valley and spills over the top of St Columba Falls.
The river gave its name to the local Post Office (Georges River PO) which opened on 1 December 1885. It was renamed Pyengana three years later.
Nearby are the beautiful forests of the Blue Tier, the Chinese mining heritage of the Trail of the Tin Dragon, and the wonderful cheeses of Pyengana, whose cloth-wrapped vintage cheddar has been produced continuously since 1895.
Halls Falls is a smaller, cascading waterfall, but its location in beautiful forest makes up for anything it may lack in size.
The falls take their name from the home of the pioneering settlers George and Margaret Cotton who settled here in 1875 and raised a family of nine children at a property they called St Columba. The name recalls Saint Columba (521-597), a Gaelic Irish missionary missionary monk who propagated Christianity among the Picts.