Clutha Gold Trail | A Journey of Discovery

Be taken on a journey along the trail and discover the fascinating stories of both our place and our past.

Clutha Mata-au River
The Clutha Mata-au River has the greatest volume and is the second longest of any river in New Zealand as it travels its 338km journey to the coast.
It was once known as the golden river because so much gold was taken from it.
With its swift current and swirling eddies, it's not surprising that Maori called it Mata-au or 'surface current'

Ladysmith - Jubilee Dredge
Reminders of the conquests for gold are etched into the very fabric of this countryside. At Ladysmith, you will see the remains of Jubilee Dredge that sank at its moorings in 1906. By the 1920's, nearly all dredges had disappeared, only the few largest ones remained.

Te Kohai - Wildlife and Flora
Here, where Maori once crossed the river, the call of New Zealand's native falcon, the Karearea can be heard as it soars above on rising air currents. This magnificent bird of prey, which can fly at speeds over 100km/hr, has made these hillsides its home.
Good stands of Native Bush, particularly Kowhai and Kanuka trees, are found among the cliffs where the Karearea nest and along the trail through the Beumont Gorge. The nationally endangered Black-Billed Gull and Black-Fronted Tern can also be seen nesting on shingle islands and the river bank around Roxburgh and Beaumont.

Lonely Graves

According to popular legend, William Rigney found the body of a young man washed up on the river bank nearby back in 1865. After the inquest, Rigney buried the body and marked the grave with a wooden headboard stating 'Somebody's Darling Lies Buried Here'. Yes, the body was found but there was no record of who buried the body. Rigney even wrote a letter to the Tuapeka Times editor explaining that he had no involvement. However, when Rigby died in 1912 his body was buried beside the young man, and the words "Here lies the body of William Rigney, the man who buried Somebody's Darling" were written on his gravestone.
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