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Skinners Flat Reservoir

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Mount Kerang Road, Skinners Flat VIC 3518

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Features

Skinners Flat Reservoir is a scenic lake located about 6 km from Wedderburn. Featuring an island at its centre and surrounded by bushland, the reservoir is a great spot for swimming, fishing, boating, camping and bushwalking. 

Visitor facilities are located by the boat ramp along Mount Kerang Road, and include an undercover picnic area, wood fire barbecues, and a drop toilet. Free camping is permitted along the entire shore of the reservoir. 

Dogs are allowed at Skinners Flat Reservoir, but please keep them on a lead and supervise them closely during bushwalks as fox baits are sometimes laid in the surrounding forest. 

Other points of interest in the Wedderburn area include Hard Hill Tourist Reserve, Wedderburn State Gold Battery, lone graves of Thomas Whyte and Catherine Glen Rinder, Jacka Park Soldiers' Memorial and Mount Egbert (known locally as The Granites). 

An information sign at Skinners Flat Reservoir provides the following text:

Skinners Flat Reservoir

A brief history

Skinners Flat Reservoir is situated on the Calder Highway approximately 6km north west of Wedderburn. Two catch drains harvest water from areas to the east and west of the reservoir. The largest of these is a channel to the east. 

The channel commences in the Wychitella State Forest (on the east side of the Wychitella Road). Both of the catch drains run through private property on easements created in 1939. Skinners Flat also has a natural catchment that extends to Mt Kerang.

Skinners Flat is found in Dja Dja Wurrung country and the first European to come near the area was Major Mitchell, who passed through the vale south of Wedderburn on July 6th 1836. A cairn on the Calder Highway marks this location. 

The first squatters arrived five years later. By 1845, many more squatters had arrived, and their runs covered many thousands of acres throughout the Loddon Valley. 

The run held in this area was called Torpichen, and it was on part of this run that the first gold of the district was found on May 10th 1852, near the site of the police station in Wedderburn.

Lack of water was a problem during the gold rush and subsequent immigrant settlement. The Korong Diggings became known as a "wet weather goldfield". At first most gold found was surface alluvial, including many large nuggets. But as with many rich Victorian goldfields shafts were sunk and quartz mining carried on. 

On March 6th 1928 Mr. R. A. Hill, Korong Shire Engineer, presented the council with a plan showing the location of the proposed new reservoir at Skinners Flat, and a pipeline to connect it to the town supply (located above the existing caravan park). The same year tenders were called for its construction. 

The reservoir was built using monkey tailed scoops drawn by two or three horses. These scoops were heavy, and had wooden wheels. At the back was a bent handle ten feet long, hence the name monkey-tail scoops. The total cost for building the reservoir is unknown.

On 25th February 1942 the Shire increased the capacity of the reservoir to between 70,000,000 and 75,000,000 allons (340 megalitres) at a cost of £1200.

The work was done by local men on unemployment relief. It involved digging catchment drains to flow into the dam and these channels are still visible. The works alleviated the water problems of the town to some extent, until the present scheme, bringing water from the Grampians became operational in 1950.

Works to improve the Skinners Flat Reservoir has been ongoing over the years. Much of the work has been undertaken by community members volunteering their time. 

As the images show - Skinners Flat has a history of activity when water has been abundant. The reservoir continues to be linked to Wedderburn and provides water for sports facilities. 

The sign also includes interesting historical images and a detailed Wedderburn Tourist Map.

ACCOMMODATION NEARBY


Inglewood Motel and Caravan Park is a 10 acre bush park privately owned and managed by Jerry and Pauline Wellman in the gorgeous gold-rush town of Inglewood, Victoria. The park is within walking distance to cafes, shops and hotel entertainment, and is surrounded by State Forests. Inglewood Motel and Caravan Park is a popular destination for tourists and is located within the renowned Golden Triangle - a region of the Victorian Goldfields which is world famous for the size, purity, and quantity of gold nuggets found in the area. 


DID YOU KNOW...

  • Bushwalking is an excellent way to get outdoors and exploring nature.
  • Camping is a great way to explore the Victorian Goldfields. Many campgrounds are located close to interesting attractions and historic sites, and the Goldfields region is certainly not lacking in fascinating things to discover. 
  • There are hundreds of fantastic barbecue areas throughout the Victorian Goldfields. Some are in parks/playgrounds, others are scattered throughout the bush. Many barbecue areas are located alongside amazing attractions and walks, so go out for a barbecue and get exploring!
  • There are heaps of fantastic swimming spots throughout the Victorian Goldfields, including the Loddon River, Cairn Curran Reservoir, Laanecoorie, Turpins Falls, and many more!
 

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