Day Four – Mt Morgans

Sunday 31st March 2013 – 100km

1.1 Easter Sunday.
Plan :
Find melted chocolate Easter Eggs under mulga trees. Fight off 2m Bungarra on chocolate Easter Egg high – they steal food. Eat remaining Easter Eggs. Skin and cook Bungarra if dead.



Luxury in the outback
Luxury in the outback


1.2 Tour of the Freiburg leases. Find gold lying on the surface like mushrooms. Inspect mine shafts dug by Leo. Go back to campsite and do a head count! Share Easter eggs, and nuggets.

Leo's diggings Ingo on the edge of the deep hole - again Leo's diggings DSC01721


1.3 Pack up and head off in convoy after lunch

And driving out through the rubbish tip provided some very tempting distractions for a few of us….

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Called into cemetery at Burtville. A lonely place to be buried and long way from home


Burtville Cemetery


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1.4 Drive past Laverton, can call in if needed for refuelling. Next reliable fuel is at Coolgardie – 450km away. Drive down the Old Laverton Road 24km. Gravel Road in good condition.

Dusty road

1.5 3pm Arrive at Mt Morgans historic gold town. Induction by current leaseholder for the area. Set up camp adjacent to football oval.

Mt Morgans


Greeted by Neville and Christian from Dacien Gold the local exploration company. We received our safety induction from Christian and then were greeted by Rex and Shareen, reps from the local Mt Margaret aboriginal community, who gave us a moving welcome to county in the indigenous language.


Neville from Dacien


1.6 5:30pm Football match on the stone oval that Pete Pustkuchen played on and recreate the Grand Final between Mt Morgans and Menzies from 1904.

1.7 Recover from Football match with traditional beer. Wear Hawaiian fancy dress.

PART ACHIEVED. We got a bit late to have the football match today, the warm showers provided by the Miners camp proved too attractive. But the Hawaiian outfits warn around the dinner table were astonishing.




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1.8 Walk 150 metres to renovated Mt Morgans Municipal Chambers. Showers and toilets in mine site camp shut at 9pm.

ACHIEVED – Heaven. Warm proper showers….. Mmmmmm. And flushing toilets. Luxury. Notwithstanding the magnificent effort of the bash toilet crew who gave us excellent facilities each night we needed them.

1.9 Night under the stars



John and Ingo


Day Three – Burtville

Saturday 30th March 2013 – 355km

1.1 8:30am Pack up after breakfast and head off in convoy.

2013 Easter Golfields Bash (19) 2013 Easter Golfields Bash (17) 2013 Easter Golfields Bash (72)

1.2 Travel 53km on good gravel roads to Lake Ballard. Consider reducing tyre pressures for smoother ride on gravel roads. Internationally recognised as an odd place to put a bunch of statues. Have a look around the Lake. Get mud on your shoes and maybe fall over. Be in awe of the spectacular vastness of inland Australia.

Lake Ballard

Lake Ballard  Phoebe aged 10 and Pat aged 87 had a walk on the lake and neither slipped over, in fact, none of us did.

Lake Ballard Lake BallardSue and Janet admiring the locals

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1.3 Travel 150km from Lake Ballard to Gwalia on dirt roads, part of the Golden Quest Discovery Trail.
Flight Deck – VeggiCruza
2013 Easter Golfields Bash (29)
1.4 Gwalia, Leonora, Laverton. Frontier towns. Bitumen roads. Tour Gwalia, old mining town, restored. Fuel available in Leonora. IGA Supermarket open all day.

GWALIA PUB GWALIA PUB 2Trailer brake had jammed on. Soon fixed with ingenuity and tenacity, and WD40. Note the food boxes in the back of the trailer are marked with each day, breakfast, lunch, and evening meals. GWALIA LUNCH BREAKDOWN

Gwalia is a relic. Almost a living relic that looks like the families have just walked away. Worth a visit, if you happen to be 800km from Perth one day..






1.5 Travel 120km to Laverton and Refuel. Next reliable fuel is 520km at Coolgardie. Nice coffee at the Visitors Centre. Leave civilisation and drive 35km on good gravel roads to Burtville. Consider reducing tyre pressures for smoother ride on gravel roads.

1.6 3:30pm Arrive on leases. Site of Leo’s two leases he named Freiburg North and South after his University in Germany. Set up camp.

1.7 Follow directions of Town Planners before setting up your own tent/camper.

Safely arrived at Burtville. Unfortunate delays of fuel, trailer brakes jamming on the dirt roads and a desire to do touristy things got us an hour later than perfect at Burtville

But these things are to be expected when we have 24 people in seven vehicles travelling in a group. The chatter on the UHF radios is entertaining and informative.

Wrong way says lead car Tim.  So seven vehicles reorganise themselves to follow the leader, hopefully down the right track next time.



We found the old diggings site of Leo with relative ease following GPS coords. Fortunately the miners have not encroached on ‘our’ spot on the leases, despite them recommencing mining a few kms away. Turning off Merolia Road and make our way past the old homestead rubbish tip to the north. Find the old tracks and hear we are..


Some worked, some chatted. Some picked up nuggets. They come up like mushrooms after rain, so we were told.

Finding gold nuggets, just like picking mushrooms
Finding gold nuggets, just like picking mushrooms



Wild animals in the bush

Wildlife in the camp

Day Two – Menzies

Friday 29th March 2013 – 520km

1.1 8:30am Pack up and head off in convoy

1.2 Kalgoorlie – Super Pit, Hay Street and town tour. Stock up on provisions – Caution: Good Friday shops will have limited opening. Refuel vehicles. Next reliable fuel Leonora – 350km. Depart Kalgoorlie 3:00pm

Super Pit Kalgoorlie

Tim, Chris, TrevorDSC04132 A long way downDSC04129 Helen, Tim, Chris, Graeme. Chris is about to use his extensive knowledge of the mining industry to fully explain something to the city slickers.DSC04131 Wedgies – correctly known as Wedge Tailed EaglesDSC04094 They feed off road kill, but sadly end up being killed themselves when they misjudge the wind and the speed of the oncoming vehicle. With a wingspan of over 2 metres, they are a formidable looking birdie. DSC04090


1.3 Travel past Paddington mine, site of one of Leo’s leases. Now a successful gold mine in full production.

1.4 Overnight Menzies Hotel. Accommodation in traditional Goldfields pub style. Relax in the cool of the beer garden after enjoying a BBQ with pizza.

Katiejean, Julia, Chris, Bruce, MelitaDSC04138 Sisters Melita and Lorraine rugged up against the desert chill. DSC04140

Is that a ghost in the background??
Is that a ghost in the background??

Tony, Bruce and Tim

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How ya going mate

1.5 Bashers with camper trailers will be able to setup in the locked compound at the rear of the hotel with access to toilets and showers.

1.6 After dark presentation by Don – Son of Elsa, Grandson of Paula. This multimedia extravaganza will present the story of the Pustkuchen’s in the goldfields with great detail and is the result of several years of painstaking research by Don and Elsa.

1.7 Safety induction by OH&S Team.

Dinner BBQ at Menzies Hotel

Movies and slides in the beer garden

Family stories.
Health and Safety very serious talks
BBQ and plenty of thirst quenching after a long day in the road.


Tomorrow, the real adventure begins

Lunch day two

Easy start from Azalea right on schedule at 8:30am


Picked up new second time grandfather John in Merredin and the crew grew to 19. Long drive to Southern Cross where Tim got a breathalyzer test from the friendly local Police keeping the roads safe over Easter. He passed!

On and on we drive into the east and eventually made it to Coolgardie for a quick comfort stop and onto Kalgoorlie where Chris and Sue had found us a lovely spot for a late late lunch



2013 Easter Golfields Bash (7) 2013 Easter Golfields Bash (9) 2013 Easter Golfields Bash (10)






And later, the Super Pit