Saturday, 27 October 2012

Kalgoorlie-Boulder - 20/10/12 to 23/10/12

One of the things we noticed as we dove into Kalgoorlie was the very wide streets and the lack of grass.  They don’t even bother with the footpaths, they are just gravel. 

Kalgoorlie is a gold mining town and home of The Super Pit. In the 1980’s Alan Bond set about buying up all of the smaller underground gold mines but he didn’t quite get there before he struck some financial hardship and disappeared from the scene. The KCGM group was formed and managed to do this and established the Super Pit in the late 1980’s. It’s right on the edge of town. You can see the pile of shale from anywhere in town.

On our second day there the temperature reached 38 degrees and that was from about 2pm to after 5pm.  We knew this was to be the case the day before and we were trying to work out how we would stay cool for the day. One option was that we should pack a picnic lunch and head to the frozen goods section of Woolies, but unfortunately it didn’t open on a Sunday. Instead we headed to the museum and then to a pub for lunch. While we were out we had the aircon pumping in the van. It was nice and cool when we got back  and we didn’t turn it off until 7pm. Doug wanted to go back to the pub again that night when the “Skimpies” start their shifts behind the bar at 6pm. We’ll leave it to you to work out what “Skimpies” are, just remember the town is full of cashed up, single, male miners. But don’t feel too bad if you can’t work it out, as I thought it was a prawn dish on the dinner menu when I first saw the sign. Anyway, Doug didn’t get a leave pass.

My special treat was to do a Bordello Tour, a tour of Australia’s oldest working brothel – Questa Casa, which is over 100 years old. The Madam, Carmel, had lots of interesting and funny stories to tell. The brothel is situated on Hay St which was where all of the brothels were moved to in the early 1900’s as the council and police were trying to clean up the town so that men folk could bring their wives and families to the centre of town. 

The beautiful streets of Boulder and Kalgoorlie

Paddy Hannan first to find gold in Kalgoorlie

Boys entertaining themselves with their home made crossbows

Kalgoorlie Museum

Boys going down into the Ministery of Magic (you have to know your Harry Potter here)

WE'VE FOUND GOLD!! No, not really

Bucket at Super Pit lookout

Looking down into the pit
Super Pit

Doug and the boys did a tour of the Super Pit. They actually got to go down into the pit and watch the huge trucks and loaders in action up very close. Pretty cool they thought. Meanwhile, I had set myself up in a café with a cuppa and caught up on my diary. Then I wandered the streets checking out all of the original facades of the beautiful old buildings.

Super Pit Tour

As we were about to head off on the long journey across the Nullarbor we decided a fun thing to do would be the Nullarbor Links Golf Course. This is the world’s longest golf course. It’s 1,365 km’s long with the first hole in Kalgoorlie WA and the 18th in Ceduna SA. So now we needed to find us some clubs. After looking in all of the op shops we ended up buying some second hand clubs and a bag at the local cash converters. They weren’t cheap at $120 but they assured us that we would get $60 for them when we sold them back at Ceduna. 

That afternoon, with a wild thunder storm hovering around and some wicked lightening going off, we headed out to the local golf course to play the first two holes of the Nullarbor Links. What a beautiful course; lovely green fairways and manicured greens. We all had a go and let’s just say there were lots of practice shots happening and it wasn’t pretty to watch.

View out from the clubhouse at Kalgoorlie Golf Course.

Standing too close to the ball - after the swing

Trespassers on the course

Beautiful park in town where we passed some time one day. Very grassy and well  maintained.

A bit of fun seeing who can get the alfoil ball into the bin. Hours of fun (because it took us that long to get it in).

And Jakie finally nails it

Storm approaching. We didn't get much out of this, just a sprinkle of rain, but mainly thunder and lightening

The Questa Casa brothel house. Doors showing are referred to as "the starting stalls".

Fifty Shades of Grey room in Questa Casa

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