Gold Copper Micro-Bats

Eastern Bentwing Bat Australia roosting colony

Photo Credit Zoos Victoria

·         I’ll collect you at 9:00 from the Quay Street carpark near the riverside cafe

·         We’ll drive to visit the mountains

·         I’ll provide lunch and a cuppa

·         Have you back at the carpark by 3:00

·         Bring your usual outdoor gear – hat, sunscreen, water, foot wear, insect repellent.

Bats about the Mountain

This tour takes you west – away from the beaches and into the Great Dividing Range – a tangle of mountains running down the entire east coast of Australia.

We’ll move from the flat coastal plains of Bundaberg with its healthy rivers and rich red volcanic soils into the harder, tougher greys and browns of the mountains.  While the value of the coastal lands is obvious and available to all, the mountains hidetheir wealth, storing their treasures  in  vaults of granite.

Hard men and tough women went into the mountains to expose the riches of gold and copper. Your Bats about the Mountain Tour lets you experience the bush and the mountains that the pioneers dared to venture into and endured but never conquered. You’ll see what their homes were like, what they called the comforts of life, how they lived and how they worked.

It was one huge task to extract the wealth of the mountains it was another huge task to get it out and onto the coast. Eventually a railroad was built but the mountains didn’t let go without a struggle. Along ridges, over creeks and through gullies the steel tracks went down but there was one last granite fortification that had to be breached and the only way was through it. The tunnel - it is 200m long and is totally self supporting and tough as nails.

Hard work done by hard men with basic tools –there was little in the way of machinery. The sweat, the labour, the shouts of the Boss, the curses of the men, the clanging of tools  - rock dislodged by hammer and chisel, rock loaded onto carts by hand, rock hauled by the horses, rocks tossed  into gullies to even the grade.

Your Bats about the Mountain Tour lets you walk through the empty hole they left in the mountain – the last barrier. It’s quiet now where few people go. No longer the clanging of crow bars, or the hiss of the steam train, or the creak and rattle of the carriages. It’s quiet – but it’s not silent and it’s not still.

Now there is the flutter and the squeak of thousands of bent wing bats. As you walk through the tunnel you are aware that you are now visitors to their home. Stand still and immerse yourself into their space – their flashes of flight, their clustered roosting on the roof, the little bumps you feel - or did you imagine that?

The labour of tough men has finished, the rattle and hiss of the train has moved on, there is nothing here in the tunnel now. But do you dare extinguish the light?