ProspectingTrip Australia 2012 - week 4

This week we visit Coolgardie, once the biggest gold town of Western Australia.

It’s also Site No. 1 on the Golden Quest Discovery Trail. We passed this town already heading to Kalgoorlie on our second day of the trip, but now we bring you a more detailed report.

The starting point of the Golden Quest Discovery Trail.

Due to a weather change (heavy wind, lots of rain and remarkably colder temperature) we are forced to camp and stay foot for a few days. Our car is not a 4x4 wheel drive and it’s too dangerous leaving the sealed roads. In the meantime we found ourselves a new ‘’hotel’’ were we can hide.

Kalgoorlie Regional Airport. Thanks to free internet and free showers we manage to survive here a few days.


This small airport comes in very handy!

Time for a call home and for updating the website, a work for our webmaster in Europe.

In the evening  we have to move to a 24 hour parking lot were we meet a lot of other prospectors and backpackers. A German prospector shows us what he has found in the gold fields last week. It’s a handful of nuggets, worth about AU $6000. Not bad for 1 week prospecting! He is going to sell it in town tomorrow (Kalgoorlie). The only shop we know where you can buy and sell nuggets is “Natural Gold Nuggets” in Hannan Street. The owners Ted & Lecky buy nuggets from prospectors and sell them to tourists.  

Another senior prospector we met is Doug Burnett, a personal friend of D.W de Havelland, author of the Gold & Ghosts series of books. These books are the holy grail for many prospectors. Unfortunately these books are no longer in print and current prices on eBay are about AU $ 2500 for a complete set!

Mr. Doug Burnett, 67 years old & long time prospector.

He tells us about his life as a prospector and showing us lots of pictures of the gold he has found (and still finds). We recognize many big nuggets and gold bars, some of them weighting more than several kilograms! He sure did well and even today he owns a helicopter for his private transportation. He is very generous and shares some very important information with us. Thank you mister!






This time we are on our way to Coolgardie, now a small town about 40 km West of Kalgoorlie. You can find Coolgardie at both sides of the Great Eastern Highway driving from Perth to Kalgoorlie. In this region there’s still a lot of mining activity going on. It’s also the beginning of the Golden Quest Discovery Trail.

Coolgardie is also the beginning of the Golden Quest Discovery Trail.


This sign says it all “Mother of the Goldfields”.

The hotel annex bar from the old days, beautifully restored.

Coolgardie visitor & exhibition center.

Old utensils from the past.


Camels were the favourite transportation vehicals those days.  They could go on for days without water and food.

The roads were wide enough to turn a camel caravan.

The old Railway Station from 1896, now a museum.

We found this behind the Railway Station, a genuine old steam locomotive.

Old transportation vehicle for horse or camel.

The old cemetery here in Coolgardie.

The old cemetery looks deserted, only few graves left.

A local food shop along the road.

Old laundry shop.

An invitation for a free concert.

Tonight we are invited for a free concert. It’s a tribute concert to AC/DC, Australians’ famous hard rock band. The band playing here this evening is DIRTY DEEDS, never heard of them but I guess the band is from Australian too. About 2000 people are expected to show up here in the park. Let’s join them.

The tribute band “DIRTY DEEDS”, not bad for a cover band!


OK, let’s hope the weather is fine again next week and that we can continue our quest for the gold.

In the meantime we ordered a new Garmin GPSMAP 62s with a topo microSD card of Australia.

We heard a lot of positive news coming from the area of Kanowna, not far from Kalgoorlie. There are still large nuggets found in this area.  




Warm regards,