Home' Traveller : Scoop Traveller WA 020 Contents 148 Scoop Traveller July - December 2011
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Scott Wilson has been a professional
prospector in the Goldfields for 30
years and is the president of the
Eastern Goldfields Historical Society.
Scott gives his tips for getting the
most out of a Kalgoorlie holiday...
and perhaps striking it rich.
One-day prospecting | If you need
to hire equipment, pre-book with
the local prospecting stores to
avoid disappointment. No need to
research, just head out and have
some fun; you never know your
luck. We’ve had people dig up
nuggets in their backyards, and
one backpacker discovered a very
large nugget on the side of a road
A week’s prospecting | Research is
important. Speak with locals, local
government authorities or the
mining people to find out about
no-go areas and restrictions. Be
aware of your surrounds and pre-
plan where you want to go and
where to camp. It’s great fun, and
even if you don’t strike it big, it’s a
great relaxing holiday.
Kanowna ghost town | 20km
north-east of Kalgoorlie, there
were 12,000 people living in the
town in the early 1900s. Now
it’s one of the largest ghost
towns in the world. The road is
sealed all the way into town and
it’s an eerie but interesting place,
with lots of old stories of fortune
and loss. Well worth a quick visit
or, if you’d like to scare yourself,
Kalgoorlie architecture | Don’t just
look at the great old buildings from
the outside. The interiors and rear
sections of many iconic buildings
are more impressive; staircases,
old gardens and gilt edgings. Go
out of your way and explore the
back streets and alleys of the CBD
there are treasures hidden away.
Goldfields tourist trails | The long
tourist trails can take days to
explore, yet any small section can
be just as good for those on a tight
schedule. Get a trails book and
ask at the local visitor centre, or
contact the historical society for
tips on where to go for a great day
out in the bush.
Take a long, lazy holiday drive from Perth to Kalgoorlie, then head south
to Esperance before returning home via the gorgeous Great Southern and
south-west. Within a few hours you will go from kangaroos pounding
along red dirt tracks to whales frolicking under coastal cliffs...
To experience a completely different climate, landscape and environment
all you have to do is head south from Kalgoorlie along the Coolgardie-
Esperance Highway. Within a few hours you will have crossed two
diverse landscapes, one steeped in WA’s outback history, the other a
wild coastal landscape of unparalleled beauty. From September to
December, the red-dirt flatlands so redolent of WA’s harsh goldfields’
history slowly give way to vast fields of seasonal wildflowers that contain
some of the rarest and most exotic species in world flora.
As you pass through Norseman, you will really start to notice the
change – green hills appear on the horizon and the weather gets cooler
by the kilometre. Stop along the way at historic homesteads, nurseries,
salt lakes and bird and animal farms. You’ll also notice that the small
number of wineries and produce farms turn into a plethora as you make
your way towards Esperance.
Shake off the red dust and break out the fishing rods for an adventure
along hundreds of kilometres of coast, stretching west to Denmark
and Albany. The beaches and national parks of the Great Southern are
regarded as the best of the best – Lucky Bay in Cape Le Grande National
Park has been officially recognised as the whitest beach on earth.
From July to December this is also whale-watching country and,
as summer approaches, the endless white sands, protected bays, coves
and rivers make for outstanding family vacations. Continue to Albany
and crawl up the coast through Augusta and Margaret River as you make
your way home.
The Perth-Kalgoorlie-Esperance return trip is as unique as it is
spectacular, and you will discover landscapes and that cannot be
replicated anywhere in the world. The range of holiday attractions and
experiences will stay with you for a lifetime, so get motoring.
THE SOUTHERN LOOP
Panning for gold at the Mining Hall of Fame in
Kalgoorlie (Photography Tourism WA).
Lucky Bay in Cape Le Grand National Park (Photography Tourism WA).
The statue of Norseman, the
horse that gave the town its name
(Photography Tourism WA).
Whales frolicking off Esperance.
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