Woohoo to no internet connection in Whroo

Got to sneak away last weekend for some camping, two hours north of Melbourne, to an abandoned ‘ghost’ gold mining town called ‘Whroo’ and the best bit was there was no internet available!

Our very basic camp site… it was all we needed!

As soon as you turn up you start to imagine what life must have been like when gold was discovered in the boom of the 1850’s as part of the Gold Rush in Victoria. 15 cm gold veins were found which were then mined for years, netting some ¬£1,000,000 at the time! Let’s just say I didn’t see my partner Andrew very much after that as he went off, gold detector in hand, to search for his fortune.

Balaclava mine entrance
Gold puddling machine from 1853

One afternoon, we walked over to the Whroo Cemetery. Very easy to imagine how hard life was on the gold fields with many people having come from England, Ireland, Spain, China and everywhere in between. Even found someone with my family name (Catherine Stapleton) who passed away at the young age of 34 on the goldfields.

Another walk found Andrew and I among where would have stood the local wooden houses of the Whroo residents. Here I found ceramics from old cups and dishes that would have been used in the kitchens. I wonder if Catherine used them? (and don’t worry, I am the proud owner of a Victorian Miner’s Right which allows me to keep items I find in agreed locations).

Oh and I bet you are wondering if Andrew found gold… Not this time, but he found bullet casings, melted metal, old nails and loads and loads of holes where others have tried to find their fortune…