Darwin or bust - a short drive up the road travel blog

A mural on the wall at our motel in a Broken Hill

42 kg nugget of silver at the GeoCentre

The Silver Tree once owned by Charles Rasp

Memorial to the miners who lost their lives over the years

last time we were here you could sit on this - now...

View from atop the line of load at Broken Hill

Inside a miners cottage at the GeoCentre

In Broken Hill we visited the Albert Kersten Mining & Minerals Museum (GeoCentre) and learnt the story of how the world’s largest deposit of silver lead and zinc was formed in Broken Hill. The museum also displays a famous collection of Broken Hill minerals and the ‘Silver tree’ – the intricate silver sculpture once owned by Charles Rasp, the boundary rider who pegged out the first Broken Hill mining lease with his partners.

We drove up to the Line of Load Miners Memorial and read many names and ages (some as young as 15) and causes of death. Lead poisoning, rock fall, crushed by machinery and explosions were common.

While the amazing architectural structure has great views over the city it certainly is a sober reminder of why Broken Hill pioneered a culture of trade unionism, including the introduction of the 35 hour working week, compensation and work health and safety. All things we now take for granted.

For dinner we ate at the Musicians Club which does a three course meal for $14 on a Sunday night, now that is good value.

Grae commented that driving along the Barrier Hwy is akin to slaloming as there are so many dead kangaroos, really they are everywhere and not a pretty sight. A very good reminder not to drive after dark! There are also a great many feral goats but they must have a keener road sense as we haven't seen any as roadkill.

An interesting fact we have also learnt this trip is that the Afghan cameleers introduced paddy melons to Australia and that Major Mitchell Cockatoos have now acquired a taste for them. The paddy melons usually grow by the side of the road, at first we thought they were apples that had fallen off a truck.

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