Jindivick with Gippsland gang - Sunday 16 September

Event Details

Jindivick with Gippsland gang - Sunday 16 September

Time: September 16, 2018 from 8:15am to 4pm
Location: Jindivick Cafe, 1055 Jacksons Track, Jindivick
Street: Britannia Mall, 485 Whitehorse Road
City/Town: Mitcham
Website or Map: https://goo.gl/maps/kHN1p4qZB…
Phone: 0408833764
Event Type: riding, social, dairy-country, forest
Organized By: Pete Zimm, David Atkinson
Latest Activity: 16 hours ago

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Event Description

Let's catch up with the club’s Gippsland chapter and go back to Jindi. After this event you'll wish you had grown up there so let this ride implant an idyllic false memory of a carefree bare-footed rural childhood in a very pretty part of Victoria. As we need to book a table for lunch, please confirm your attendance ASAP.


This is a pleasant 220km day ride to an out-of-the-way pocket of west Gippsland that one hardly ever has a reason to visit. Jindivick is a small hamlet which sits high on a ridge at the foothills of the Great Dividing Range about 15 km north of Drouin and boasts splendid views of the surrounding countryside and mountains beyond. Jindivick also has a quintessential country town general store with a cafe attached which will stir your soul. This will be the lunch spot where we'll meet our Gippsland friends while gazing out across the beautiful farmland scenery of rolling pastoral hills. A Sunday roast is available. The first Jindivick General Store was established in 1889 by Norwegian Seaman Johann Tandberg. Jindivick is an Aboriginal word meaning "burst asunder". Does anybody remember the Jindivick remote controlled target drone produced by the Government Aircraft Factory during the 1950s?

Ride Description

From Mitcham our off-highway route is via Silvan and Gembrook. We'll be riding through part of the Bunyip State Forest. There is a short 5.5kms section of good dirt road here but you'll hardly notice it as the forest is so pretty. A fuel stop at Longwarry North will keep our scooters happy as the next available fuel is at Launching Place. Although we are here for the beautiful scenery, of historical interest we will ride along the length of Jacksons Track (see notes below). We aim to get to Jindivick at 12:30pm. After lunch at the Jindi Cafe, we'll visit the town's cricket ground which surely has one of the best views of any pitch anywhere. There is some stunning riding north of Neerim South with distant purple-blue mountains forming a backdrop to cleared rolling hills. We have been climbing ever since leaving Longwarry, however after passing through Nayook, we plunge down through a steep forested road into the LaTrobe River Valley to meet the main Poweltown-Noojee Road. Observe if you will, the majestic white-trunked manna gums near Gilderoy and Three Bridges. Our return route to Melbourne is via Yellingbo and Mount Evelyn. 

Departure Point and Time

Britannia Mall, 485 Whitehorse Road, Mitcham shopping centre. Pull into the left service road at the start of Mitcham shopping centre before Mitcham Road. The ride departs at 9am sharp. Come earlier if you want coffee and breakfast beforehand. Several cafes in the mall will cater for our needs. Please arrive with a full tank of petrol.

Ride coupons cannot be redeemed on the day. Route subject to change on a whim without notice. The colour 'purple-blue' mentioned in the description may not be available on the day. The weather will be sunny and no further correspondence will be entered into on this matter. The lead scooter may produce noxious gases when under pressure. 

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Comment by Les Bennett yesterday

Sorry I missed today. It didn't pass the garage roof test, (actually, the whole garage was wet). I await the rescheduled date. Salute to those who attended ,,,

Comment by David Atkinson yesterday

Well a small group of us had breakfast at Mitcham. It was bucketing down all last night. Accolades to Stephen and Sally who braved the rain. Now the sun has just broken through. Reports from the World Vespa Day suggest that an Irish summer is similar to a Melbourne winter.

Comment by David Atkinson on Friday

Hello brave hearts who have signed up for this ride. After consultation with club members who were going to ride from Gippsland, we have decided to re-schedule this event. The reason? A weather forecast of hail, 95% chance of rain, thunderstorms and snow down to 600 metres. I know this will disappoint many of you (read irony) so please come along to the departure point at Mitcham on Sunday to share a coffee, have breakfast and a chin wag. Pete and I will be there between 8:30-10:30am. We'll work on another date for this beautiful ride. David

Comment by Julie Pond on June 2, 2018 at 17:48

Sorry to be missing this ride, but we will be farewelling all our new found friends as this this will be the last day of the Vespa World Day event in Belfast.  Hope you get a good turnout for this great ride and breakfast meet with the Gippy crew David.

Comment by David Atkinson on June 1, 2018 at 15:27

History of Jackson's Track

Joseph Jackson blazed this track through the heavily timbered hills in the early 1860s. Jindivick is the only settlement along its length. Jackson's Track came to national attention with the publication of a memoir by Daryl Tonkin. Daryl settled there in 1936 with his older brother Harry on 550 acres of farmland and regrowth forest on a flat to the west of Jindivick. The rich temperate forests of Gippsland grew some of the largest eucalyptus trees in Australia and so the brothers set up a timber mill. 

The men who worked with the Tonkins came from all over. One of these bush workers was an Aborigine Kurnai man, Stewart Hood, who had been driven out of a church-run mission station for opposing the authorities. The brothers decided to help him and collected his family to bring them to live on the property. Stewart set up a camp near the brothers' shack and taught them about living off the land. Daryl instantly connected with Stewart’s way of living, which he felt was much more suited to his personality than the typical white lifestyle. He was drawn to Aboriginal people for their good humour, generosity and lively and entertaining company. 

In time Daryl became attracted to Stewart Hood's daughter, Euphemia. He married her tribally to the concern of his brother Harry and the disgust of his sister Mavis who tried to break up their relationship. The story involves the kidnapping of Euphemia by Harry. However Daryl and Euphemia remained partners for life and had twelve children together.

Word soon got around to various Aboriginal communities that there was plenty of work, good water, firewood and lots of game to be had at Jackson's Track. Aborigines from all over Victoria began turning up. For two decades up to 150 Aborigines lived at the Jackson’s Track camp in an amicable relationship. From the 1930’s onwards an almost utopian community of white and Aboriginal people lived and worked happily alongside one another earning a simple but dignified living from the timber industry.  

In the late 1950s do-gooders began to agitate for the removal of the Aboriginal camp at Jackson's Track. In accordance with the attitudes of the day and the policy of assimilation, the community was given a week's notice to leave. Their camp huts were burnt and destroyed in 1961 and the residents relocated to the fringes of Drouin. 

A bushman all his life, Daryl died in 2008 aged 90. He attributed certain natural and supernatural powers to Aboriginal people, which he said made them particularly well adapted to living in the Australian bush. He tells of his own respect for these distinctly Aboriginal abilities, and of his eagerness to learn from the people at Jackson’s Track.

Comment by David Atkinson on June 1, 2018 at 15:27

One of the four Aboriginal families living on Jacksons Track was the Roses. Lionel Rose, world bantam weight boxing champion (1968), grew up in a one-room tin hut on Jackson's Track near Labertouche. Daryl Tonkin was his uncle by marriage. Rose trained on the sand dunes at Kilcunda and there are pictures of him in the local Milk Bar.

The affection Lionel had for his childhood days living on "The Track" can be heard in his song, the chorus of which runs thus:

If I only could I'd turn time back

and mix with the lovers and the lumberjacks

I'd listen as the echo of the old broad axe

rang through the hills of Jackson's Track

Lionel's song, "Jackson's Track"

He also recounts some of his childhood at Jackson's Track camp in this documentary about his life as a boxer.

Lionel Rose Documentary

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