Friday, February 28, 2014

Sepia Saturday: Venus Baths


The theme photo for Sepia Saturday this week features people sitting on rocks. So I selected half a dozen photos to post ... and then decided to just go with one.

My parents, Mavis and Angus Wyllie, are in the photo - dad standing with his hands on his hips and mum sitting at his feet with me on her knee - as well as dad's mother, his two sisters (Barbara and Dorothy) and mum's sister, Betty, with my cousin Rex on her knee. So it's easy to date the photo to 1950.

Wyllies and Smiths at Venus Baths, Grampians 
The location is also easy. It's Venus Baths near Halls Gap in the Grampians, Victoria. Here's a modern photo taken in the same location.
Venus Baths, Grampains
For over a hundred years the Venus Baths has been a very popular spot, a short walk from Halls Gap and very pretty. I've been there lots of times because the Grampians mountain range has always been a family holiday and day visit spot, and a walk to the Baths was often included. In 1950 all of the people in the photo were living in and around the Minyip area of the Wimmera, an hour or so to the north. Later we all moved from Minyip but were still living close enough to visit the Grampians. We loved it and so did lots of other people. It's now a very popular National Park.


Nature has given the Grampians a bit of a battering in the last few years - several major fires including one a few weeks ago, and a severe rainstorm that damaged a lot of the major walking tracks and infrastructure. Venus Baths was also a casualty. The rock pools themselves were unscathed but the course of the creek was changed by rockfalls and slips, there was a lot of erosion and the track and footbridges were extensively damaged. The track was closed until everything could be repaired. I haven't been there since it was reopened but is on my list of things to do, and when I go I must remember to sit in the same spot for another photo.

16 comments:

  1. What a great idea to go sit in the same spot where your family sat in 1950. It looks like a beautiful park.

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  2. You haven't changed all that much, Lorraine! Very good to just stick with one photo, I never seem to manage it. I'll look out for Venus Baths next time we visit the Grampians.

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  3. Thank you for a very interesting adventure! Your family photo is beautiful too.

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  4. Oh yes, you must. Venus Rocks what 'heavenly' name!

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  5. A great idea to take a picture in the same area 60+ years later. When we moved to Tuolumne Co., CA, I came into possession of my great grandfather's journal of a trip to Yosemite in 1874 & spent the next couple of years obtaining old photographs of the places he described & then retracing his route taking current day photos of those same places. It was a wonderful adventure & I've slowly been putting the old & new photos together with his text to at least give to all the relatives - plus a copy to the Yosemite Conservancy. So take that "now" picture for sure!

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  6. Taht was just lovely. It all ties together nicely.

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  7. I kind of like one photo too because a similar prompt is sure to appear in due time. This reminds me of a place my kids used to swim in D'Lo Mississippi long ago. Without the healthful springs though.

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  8. Rainstorms can cause a lot of changes and damage to geographic features. Some of the Minnesota state parks and a zoo were damaged by heavy rain and flooding. California is now having problems with much needed rain.

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  9. Oooh! I had forgotten about this place - when I lived near there (in the 70s and 80s) we used to go a lot.
    Drove through from Dunkeld to Horsham a year or so ago - between the two fires and after the flooding but didn't think of Venus Baths.
    Thanks for the memories.

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  10. I have learned so much more about Australia again today from your post...I am always having to refresh myself to find which Victoria is being referred to...we are most familiar with that in British Columbia, Caanada. It is nice to aee the then and now in posts, I should have googled and updated mine, but I did not think to do so.

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  11. Venus Baths looks like a lovely spot.

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  12. When you say Halls Gap, I'm obliged to ask "As in Ben Hall?" for some reason....

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    1. No, it was named after the first European to find the valley - he lived nearby.

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  13. I'm pleased you included a map to show the location; when I saw the Grampians my first thought was of the mountains in Scotland. I hope Venus Baths has survived reasonable intact. Don't forget to let us see the photo you take when you revisit the area,

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  14. The smooth rocks look the perfect place to sit by the babbling brook and have a picnic, it will be interesting to see the photo when you take it. I'm now wondering if the rock of the area is granite like the Scottish Grampians, although red granite or it is sandstone.

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  15. Not many rocks get a before and after photo. The name Venus Baths suggests either an association with the planet or a Greek Goddess.

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I love to read your comments. Thankyou for your interest.

Lorraine