7) Gold Mine Tunnel

Explore The Tunnel and See The Mining Tools

7) Mine Tunnel Skip
7) Mine Tunnel Miner's Tools

The mine tunnel was developed at Old Mogo Town, 1850's Gold Rush Theme Park, now known as The Original Gold Rush Colony, to allow visitors to view the original mine shaft in safety. Walking through the cool darkness visitors can experience what it is like to be underground.

The formwork of the drive in this mine is made of ironbark. Shoring has been over-engineered when compared to what you would normally find in a mine of the 1850's. There are a series of uneven terrace like steps leading up the re-inforced corridor. Once you reach the flat level in the middle, there is a selection of old mining tools, picks axes crucibles and lamps on display as well as a typical wooden wheelbarrow.

Miners would gradually dig down a shaft, often building rickety ladders to suit the depth to which they had to descend. They would often work by a single lantern light, with the lantern attached by a nail hammered into the dirt, and whatever light reached them from the sky above. You can see the use of the iron buckets and bucket frames lined with hessian sacking, used to haul the ore and dirt to the suface using a simple system of winches and pulleys.

Visitors who are unable to make the easy climb from the entrance of the mine may choose to come in on the flat area of the drive. This route is even useable for assisted wheelchair access, or families with strollers.

Most mines in the Mogo area are shaft and drive mines. The "colour" (gold traces) was followed, usually to the top of a ridge where the top of the gold bearing quartz reef could be found. Once the right location was identified a shaft was sunk. While it was being dug samples were constantly monitored to assess whether it was worth continuing. This accounts for the incidence of multiple shallow shafts around a gold mining area. The Original Gold Rush Colony sits over a massive quartz reef, as quartz was hit when digging the footings for the Antique Machinery Shed, the Reception and most recently the new Accommodation Settlers Cabins.

Eventually, when the shaft was deep enough, a horizontal drive would be brought in to meet it. As the mine was worked, the shafts would become important for ventilation. cantilever design. When going
downhill there was a quick release on the back gang that allowed the log
to be dropped on the ground to act as a brake. When the alluvial gold
dried up a lot of diggers moved to timber, which was a major industry in
this area.