Yerranderie, Hill End and Sofala

Goodbye Hill End.
Goodbye Hill End.

Yerranderie is a former silver mining town, now long abandoned and fitting the classic ghost town description….old buildings, ruins, cemetery, mines etc. It was reached by heading west from Oakdale, but is now cut off from this direct access due to the creation of Warragamba Dam which created Lake Burragorang. Hence it is now a long way round drive though Oberon from the north or Wombeyan from the south.

Hill End is located approx. 280kms north west of Sydney, it’s about 50kms north of Bathurst, so from our place roughly a 4.5 hour drive. It was a former Gold Rush Town, hitting it’s peak around the 1870’s. Today, NPWS have classified as a historical site.

It has a handful of original buildings remaining and NPWS have signposted lots of original photos of the town in it’s hay-day along the main street where, not much but vacant land now exists. The town now mainly consists of a few streets of residences and one main street with one pub and a general store, a museum and a few residents homes. There are also 2 paid camping grounds.

If you like your history it is easy to spend a day or two looking at the old mines, and ruins that are both within walking distance and some short drives, including a few lookouts. It is also where the Bridle track begins.

Sofala is another Gold rush era town which claims to be Australia’s oldest surviving Gold rush town. It’s about 50mins east of Hill End on a tarred road. There are a few attractions such as the pub and a gaol and a quaint little main street. It is on the Turon river and there are numerous campsites along it. You can continue back to Bathurst on the bitumen or follow the Turon on the dirt to eventually come out at Capertee.