The name Blue Mountains was first used to describe the range to Sydney’s west by Captain William Paterson in a dispatch recording his failure to find a crossing through the Grose River Valley in 1793.
While the name has stuck, it is very doubtful whether the NSW Corpsman understood the phenomenon responsible for the distinctive blue haze which invariably screens the mountains.
According to the scientists, it is created by scattered rays of light coming into contact with fine particles and droplets of oil shed by the valley eucalyptus trees.
There is no record of whether Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson came up with their blue theories when they finally found a passage through the mountains, but we do know that they did rest up at a camp on the site of the Old Baths at Hazelbrook on their successful 1815 exploration.
Halfway up the mountains, Hazelbrook takes its name from a large home built in the 1870s on the southside of the existing railway station.