Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Broken Hill in the Australian Outback Day One

First few shots are a quick view across to what they call the Line of Lode in Broken Hill. You can see 

in the old sepia shot the old Broken Hills in their natural state. Now they are flattened down overburden with a cafe and a miners' memorial build on top. Broken Hill began in about 1888, 100 years after European settlement began in Australia. The big big problem was lack of water of course. Now piped in from Menindee Lakes and The Darling near Wilcannia I think. It's tastes like Adelaide water....yuck.

We went out to Day Dream mine (between BH and Silverton) an incredibly interesting look at the hardships encountered in mining tin, lead, silver and copper. One woman had 19 kids and only 4 survived to be teens. Most died of water-borne disease. To get a child to 2 years old was a miracle. I doubt I would have stayed after the first death. Imagine coming out here by horse and cart. It's far enough in a car.

We went underground, into the old mine. The Littlest Beach House Brat was nervous but pushed through. I got more toey once we were down there. At the bottom, we were lead into a small "room", to see a where a huge rock had fallen, which of course can always happen at any minute......Yikes. The lights were extinguished for 5 minutes and it gave me new insight into how the Thai boys must have felt. God knows how they coped in the pitch dark for 9 days.....not knowing whether they'd be found or not. I did not like it one bit.

All the trees have been cut down for 150km around BH. Some of it was used to hold in backfill in the mine. They don't really have a structural function. That is they don't really hold up the roof but if the thing is about to cave in they creak and that is a sign to get the hell out. That's why they are called "Talking Toms"

Once back on top we were treated to Devonshire teas, which was a lovely reward for crawling around in the dirt for an hour. The hard hat was essential. Those Cornish miners were tiny. I kept hitting my head on the roof. The scones had been cooked in the wood fuel stove and were absolutely delicious.

Then onto the ghost town of Silverton. So many productions filmed here. Including A Town Like Alice and of course some Mad Maxs The pub is great for lunch and the museum was good too. The town actually started a year before Broken Hill, but the minerals ran out very early, so many of the buildings were moved over to the newer town. Distance to Middle of Nowhere......0km

Taken from my travel diary.  We travelled to Broken Hill in 2018

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