Day 5: 29th August 2014

Today we hopped in the car and drove from where we are staying in Boulder, into Kalgoorlie. First stop was the information centre to see about booking a tour of the Super Pit open cut mine, but unfortunately all tours were booked out.

As Opal Mining is to Coober Pedy, Gold mining is to Kalgoorlie and the surrounding "Goldfields" District. The mines dominate the landscape with the huge Super Pit continuing to grow at the South East end of town. This is such a huge hole that it can be seen from space, is oblong in shape and is approximately 3.5 kilometres long, 1.5 kilometres wide and 570 metres deep. Only 1 in every 7 of the huge dump trucks that are running 24 hours per day carries high grade ore, from which they extract an amount of gold equivalent to about a golf ball, but over a year, this equates to around 28 tonnes!

Seeing as we missed out on the Super Pit tour, we decided to visit Hannans North Tourist Mine, which provided an interesting insight into the history of the local gold industry and had examples of some of the huge machinery currently in use.

The main street of Kalgoorlie showcases some beautiful old buildings, some of which looked to have a Middle Eastern appearance, perhaps influenced by the Afghan Cameleers who were responsible for carting stores, materials and minerals to the goldfields.

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