JACKAROO & HOLDEN 4WD CLUBS TRI-STATE GATHERING
Easter 2013 – Thurs 28th March to Tues 2nd April.
Welcome to our third newsletter. The planning committee has been up in the Pyrenees once a month during winter, and we are working on finalising all the many things that make up a tri-state gathering. We plan to send out further details with the Registration Forms in late November.
We plan on having 4WD trips that range from difficult to easy, plus some social and historical trips, a winery trip and a walking trip. We will supply directions for a number of DIY trips to surrounding attractions, such as the underground caves at Seppelt’s Great Western Winery, where the sparkling wine is stored in three kilometres of tunnels, or Aradale, the 1867 historic former Ararat Lunatic Asylum (yes, they will probably let you go at the end!)
Another trip planned is a Fossickers Trip. The Victorian Club will obtain a fossickers’ Group Licence that will enable us to take out groups along 4WD tracks to look for Pyrenees gold. We will supply training and some metal detectors, but if you have your own, please bring it along.
Gold! Gold! Gold!
Moonambel was first settled in 1844, and gold was discovered there in 1860. Signs of the mining years are still to be found in the bush, with some deep mine shafts for the unwary walker. At some places in the bush you might even stumble upon a Chinese oven. Modern day prospectors using gold detectors can uncover coins and other artefacts from places as far apart as China and England. The transportable lockup used on the Moonambel Goldfields can still be seen behind the old police station. Much of the gold mining was alluvial but there were many deep mines.
Today, Moonambel’s population is about 270, but in 1866 there was a moving population of about 30,000 living in tents near the mines, but many more permanent buildings were also established. Moonambel had five hotels, butchers, general stores, at least one blacksmith, a local newspaper, a police station and a court house.
Saturday Night Entertainment
Weather permitting, we plan to have a big campfire for everyone to sit around, and a barbecue. A local bush poet and teller of tall tales will entertain us.
Sunday Dinner and Theme
The theme for Sunday night is ‘GOLD’, so put your imagination to work and create something clever. We have contracted a group of local caterers to provide Sunday evening’s meal in the main pavilion and verandah at the recreation reserve. Please BYO drinks. (You might like to buy some wine from one of the 15 nearby wineries).
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