Quartz Reef Point Herringbone Tailings

The classic herringbone pattern at the Quartz Reef Point tailings offers a remarkable and pristine depiction of early Central Otago gold mining methods.

This historic reserve is accessible via a walk through private property to a viewing platform. The car park is on SH8 between Cromwell and Tarras. Cross the road and follow the marker poles to the right and up a rise to the entrance gate. From here there are also views across to Lake Dunstan, Cromwell and the Pisa Range.

The gold bearing site at Quartz Reef Point attracted the early miners. There was a recorded 60 people there in 1965, but little is known about them. Water appears to have been sourced from nearby streams and stored in a series of dams that no longer exist, up the slope. Like a nearby stone hut, the system of schist-lined races leading to the site has long since become obscured and is no longer visible

The remarkable sluicing channels and herringbone tailings left behind are from the ground sluicing method used to work the terraces. This typically required the channelling of water to the head of a claim to soften the working face. Larger stones would be removed and stacked, row after row, in the herringbone pattern. The washed material would then be directed through a sluice channel, possibly lined with rolled up tussock or hessian if it was available, to separate the gold from the gravel.

The Herringbone tailings offer a great photo opportunity. The sharp, angular faces of the tailings provide strong contrasts of light and shade at different times of the day.

For your own safety and in the interests of preserving these unique tailings please stay on the track and the platform.


Planning
Otago Central Rail Trail
Discover New Zealand's Original Great Ride - The Otago Central Rail Trail is a relaxing 4-5 day ride through big sky landscapes and through historic townships. Read More

Roxburgh Gorge Trail
Explore New Zealand's Grand Canyon - The Roxburgh Gorge Trail is a unique one day experience. Described as 'Another World' this 34km trail includes a unique jet boat transfer. Read More

Clutha Gold Trail
A 73km journey of discovery through a tapestry of diverse landscapes from seductively rugged semi-arid dry lands through to lush green contoured farmlands that follow powerful Clutha Mata Au River. Read More

Mountain Bike Trails
Whether you’re looking for an adrenalin-pumping single track descent, a long backcountry journey, or a heli biking adventure then the Central Otago region has an experience to suit your style. Read More

Cycle a Great Ride
Central Otago boasts three of NZ's best trails. Otago Central Rail Trail - the original great ride; Roxburgh Gorge Trail - a unique one-day trail complete with jet boat ride; Clutha Gold Trail - a journey of discovery along the mighty Clutha Mata-au river. Read More

Cycling & Mountain Biking Trails
Central Otago boasts a diversity of cycling and mountain bike trails that beckon the cyclist to experience the freedom and the joy of getting off the beaten track. Read More

Clutha Gold Trail
The Clutha Gold Trail is one of the 'Great Rides' of the Nga Haerenga, New Zealand Cycle Trail. The trail is full of variety - from undulating to flat to meandering, there is a journey of discovery around every corner. Read More

Getting to Central Otago
The Central Otago region is located in the middle of the South Island of New Zealand. A scenic a 1hr drive from Queenstown International Airport and accessible via road from Dunedin & Christchurch airports. Read More

Roxburgh Gorge Trail
A spectacular one-day ride through truly iconic country between Alexandra and Roxburgh Dam along the Clutha Mata-au River is a trail worth exploring. Read More

Motorsport Mecca
Be amazed at Highlands in Cromwell. With a world class museum, range of on and off track activities and annual events there is something for everyone whether a car fanatic or not. Read More

Central Otago Wine
Indulge yourself in a premium Central Otago wine at one of the many wineries or cellar doors in the Cromwell and Alexandra basins – sensational! Read More
Central Otago - Our Regional Identity
Central Otago - Our Regional Identity 'A World of Difference' defines what is uniquely Central Otago as a place and a community. Read More

Central Otago NZ - Through Local Eyes
Central Otago NZ - Through Local Eyes Meet some unique and passionate Central Otago locals and be introduced to their favourite places and activities. Read More

Central Otago Food & Wine
Central Otago Food & Wine Central Otago is a place of sheer indulgence – whether it’s fine dining, a casual al-fresco lunch or café culture. You will be spoilt for choice when enjoying local fare and award winning wines at the great selection of cafés, restaurants, cellar doors and country pubs. Read More
site maplegal information | login
evoSuite Tourism Marketing Software | Web Design by ReserveGroup