Mine Tours Update
Tours of the Long Tunnel Extended Mine are conducted every day of the year, except for Christmas Day. On weekends, Wednesdays, public holidays and school holidays they are scheduled for 12:00 noon; 1:30pm and 3:00pm. On all other days tours are conducted at 1:30pm only. Tour numbers are generally limited to around 20 people in order to ensure a more personal experience.
Visitors should secure their place on a tour by booking using the online booking service as soon as possible.
Visitors must arrive at the Mine at least 15 minutes before the advertised tour time in order to guarantee inclusion. Group numbers are generally limited to around 20 people
General enquiries and bookings for groups of 12 or more can be made by phoning the Mine Office on 03-5165 6259 between 1:00pm and 2:30pm or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Mine is adequately lit and well ventilated. Tours do not enter overly confined spaces and are conducted on flat walking surfaces. Accessible by wheelchair and children’s pushers is possible with a basic wheelchair and children’s pusher available on request.
Each tour lasts approximately 50 minutes and takes visitors approximately 260 metres underground into a large machinery chamber hewn from solid rock around 150 years ago. Mining methods and history are discussed while the famous Cohens Line of Reef is visited.
Tickets are purchased at the Mine Office with card or phone being the preferred methods of payment.
- Family 2 adults and up to 2 children – $60
- Adults – $25
- Children under the age of 16 – $20 (children under the age of 6 are free)
- Seniors and concession card holders – $20
- Group tours may be conducted by arrangement. Costs for groups of over 12 people are $15 per head.
Each tour is conducted by a Mine Guide familiar with the Mine’s history and the history of Walhalla and is designed to be informative and entertaining. The Mine is operated under strict State Government enforced protocols. The safety of our patrons and staff is of paramount importance.
Schools & School Projects
The Long Tunnel Extended Mine caters particularly for school groups. Bookings can be made directly with the Mine by phone to 03 5165 6259 or email to email@example.com. Alternatively if school groups are staying at Rawson Village, arrangements can be made by staff there.
Costs for school groups are $12 per head for groups of more than 12 students, with one adult free of charge to every 10 students. A higher adult/student allowance applies for special needs students. The maximum number for each group is generally 20, but arrangements can be made for multiple tours at 20 minute intervals.
Long Tunnel Extended Gold Mine History
In 1863, a group of prospectors led by Ned Stringer travelled down the Aberfeldy River from the Goulburn valley at around the same time as the goldfields of the Jordan and Jericho were being opened up. The group reached the Thomson River and followed it downstream exploring tributaries as they travelled. Just past the tributary now known as Stringer’s Creek, they found good gold prospects. By following this creek upstream for a day, the gold in the creek was reaching significant levels, each man in the party was finding around an ounce of gold daily and the news soon got out, inspiring a rush to the area to the place that is now called Walhalla.
Men experienced in quartz reef mining soon came to the site and realising the gold must have come from a nearby lode began a search that soon revealed a number of gold bearing quartz reefs, among them the now world renowned Cohen’s Reef.
A number of mines commenced operation in 1865 including the Hercules Mining Company which opened up the Long Tunnel Extended Adit. This tunnel reached Cohen’s Reef in 1867 at a distance of 160m from the entrance and a depth of about 120 meters below the surface. Unfortunately, the gold content in the quartz reef at this point was quite low at about 5gm to the tonne. Some exploratory work continued along the reef and to lower levels but in 1871 the operation was sold to the newly created Long Tunnel Extended Mining Company N/L. This company was managed by more experienced mining people and was well financed. The adit was continued to a point some 230 metres from the entrance. Chambers were excavated for machinery and boilers, chimneys were constructed to the surface and the boilers and machinery were installed. The LTEM Company used ‘state of the art’ methods and equipment of the day and kept abreast of developments as they occurred. During periods of full production, the five large Cornish boilers burned in excess of 30 tons of wood daily.
By the time the mine closed in 1914, a total of 859,540 tons of Quartz had been mined from which 13.7 tonnes of gold had been extracted. During the 1890’s the Long Tunnel Extended Mine was the biggest gold producer in Victoria for five consecutive years and in one of those years it was the biggest producer in Australia. Its 8.5 kilometres of underground workings extended to a depth of 923 metres below the machinery chamber which in turn is some 150 metres below natural surface.
Diagram of Winding Gear
(Click to download the diagram below)
|Sunday||12noon, 1:30pm, 3pm|
|Wednesday||12noon, 1:30pm, 3pm|
|Saturday||12noon, 1:30pm, 3pm|