Sunday, 5 April 2015
We asked the kids what they'd most like to do today and the response was an Easter Egg hunt, followed by a day of fossicking for Killiekrankie Diamonds.
So after the egg hunt around the cabin park, well two hunts actually as we hid eggs for the children, then they hid them all again for us, we headed off to the old tin mine which according to the cabin park owner was a good place to look.
In keeping with global standards we utilised child labour for our mining operations.
We had great expectations of getting rich quick, so after about 40 minutes of fruitless searching we were ready to throw down our shovels and leave in a huff. In a last ditch effort Andy decided to wash a panful of rocks with some nearby puddle water (it had rained in the morning) and that's when our first diamond emerged from the muck. From that moment we altered our mining methods and got busy hauling our scratchings over to the puddle and also hauling puddle water back to where we were digging. In the next 40 or so minutes we found another 4 diamonds and were feeling pretty pleased with ourselves.
It was getting close to lunch by then so we were ready to celebrate our findings with a picnic lunch on Killiekrankie beach about 10 minutes drive away. This is where we went on our first day too and it is where I noticed that the locals keep a very tidy & clean beach bbq area which includes condiments and utensils - nice!
After lunch it was time to head to the other diamond hot spot on the island, a place appropriately called 'Diamand Gully' an hours walk down the beach to the corner of Killiekrankie Bay
Along the way we came across some unique limestone-on-granite rock formations..
And we had to shelter under some rocks when it suddenly bucketed down with snowball sized raindrops. We made it to Diamand Gully though, which was marked by a small beach just a few metres wide and lots of rocks.
The place doesn't look that likely, but we did manage to find 5 or 6 more diamonds before we gave up. Apparently other people have dug huge holes there and kept at it for days at a time so it's surprising there were any left at all really - I guess most of the big ones were gone as we only found small ones.
While the kids and Jon were busy searching Andy and I went to have a look at some of the beaches even further around - they were absolutely amazing - amongst the most beautiful beaches I've ever seen and the weather and light today wasn't all that great - I can only imagine how stunning they would look on a good day - the photos certainly don't do them justice.
We insisted that Jon and Alexa check them out while we started the long walk back with the kids. Alexa has a super-humanly fast walking pace so we knew they'd pretty much catch us up even if we had a half and hour head start. And sure enough we were only back for 10 minutes before they arrived back at the cars. From there we drove the 40 or so kms very carefully back to the cabin park. The day before I'd avoided hitting a multitude of wildlife on the roads only to have a chicken run under my front wheels just metres from arriving home. Today we managed to get home without killing anything which was a relief!
Another great Flinders Island day where amazingly the kids walked for 2 hours with no complaint and we found diamonds. Awesome.
Now whilst I was getting some photos off Jon's phone I came across some good ones I missed from a few days ago - so here they are..