Saturday, February 9, 2013

Australian Summer

Since my last update we've had another couple of very enjoyable but very hot days in Yarrawonga. I have always enjoyed our Australian Summers - but as I have gotten older I look forward to our Winters as well.  But I must say the last few days have really tested me. Poor old Yarrawonga have not had a day under 31c (87.8f) since Christmas. But we have had most days around 35c (95f) and on Thursday we had a day with 42c (107.6)!!!! My goodness it was hard to take especially being in our camper.
This was the temperature in the car when we returned after lunch!!!
 So to cope we took ourselves on a day long adventure in the airconditioned car. We travelled to the town Wangaratta. Wangaratta is a city of almost 17,000 people in the northeast of Victoria about 230 km from Melbourne.
 The original inhabitants of the area were the Pangerang Aborigines who spoke a Gunai language. Many of the Pangerang were killed in the Gippsland massacres. Major Thomas Mitchell was the first European to visit the area, passing on his return to Sydney during his 1836 expedition he made a favourable report of its potential as grazing pasture.
We then headed of to the tiny village of El Dorado, which is home to the Smallest Pub in Victoria - Mc Evoy Tavern. Gold was found in the area during the 1850s. The town's population declined sharply after the area ceased to yield gold. The remains of an old gold dredge can still be seen today.

Remains of old Gold Dredge
Smallest Pub in Victoria
Then onto yet another pub! This one was called The Vine and has an old dirt basement that has a lot of old history of the region. But the main reason we went there was because the basement also has a tunnel that was supposedly once used by our famous Bush Ranger Ned Kelly, to hide out from the law. It's amazing - I am a born and bred Australian but there is so much about this beautiful country I don't know. But I am making that one of my missions for the rest of my life to learn more about why certain towns exist. 

Lunch destination