FEBRUARY EXCURSION – WARRAGAMBA DAM

After enduring 40 plus and 30 plus degrees centigrade temperatures all through February 2017 – it seemed rather ironic that on the very day of the proposed barbecue at Warragamba Dam – it should start pouring rain. And did it rain -heavy downpours continued through the morning until about 4.30 AM. Then it suddenly stopped with the wet roads the only evidence that there had been a storm. Two groups of hardy Zedders began the trek to the Crossroads Hotel at Casula and directly to the Dam (whichever was the most convenient).

DAM

Some confusion had crept in on the day as from the information provided the Warragamba Dam Trust had relinquished control over the electric barbecue and picnic area to Wollondilly Council – which was now in a separate section to the Dam. Navigation then had to be reset to target Farnsworth Ave, Warragamba rather than Crest Rd, Warragamba.

Glancing around the assembled group at the Crossroads Hotel was not exactly encouraging – 4 cars and six members. However, a number of members had gone directly to Warragamba Dam (the weather had been rather drastic earlier in the morning and had probably scared off a number of members from attending the barbecue). Around 9.00AM the convoy started to motor west along the Camden Valley Way. The inevitable inconvenient red lights cut the convoy and with nowhere to pull over the lead cars had to travel very slowly (to the annoyance of other motorists) to allow the remnants of the convoy to catch up. This unfortunately happened a number of times. Finally, free running when the convoy reached The Northern Road.

Barry and John

The convoy slowed as it passed through Silverdale because of some traffic build up. The other body of Zedders had found a little niche park within the Warragamba Dam Area itself. Finally, the two groups joined up. Apparently the main Warragamba park was being used for some type of ethnic festival with about 300 people filling the park.

While discussing options with regards to having a barbecue or having lunch at one of the local clubs, it was revealed that some members hadn’t brought their meat rations as they assumed that it would be too wet to barbecue outdoors. It was decided then to eat at one of the nearby clubs. As this was being resolved Vanesa and Darko arrived.

A head and car count proved very pleasing with regards to the previously threatening weather – nine cars and thirteen members – an excellent effort considering the conditions and the cancellations. Great to see such a response from the conscientious members who attended.

cupcakes

Vanesa had thoughtfully brought some decorated muffins with various “Z” designations in the icing – such as 240Z, 260Z etc. Well done, Vanesa!

The group then started a tour of the Dam. The first step was to climb down to the various viewing platforms to get a better appreciation of the extent of the size of the Dam and its environs. The views were quite spectacular and a number of photos were taken.

Barbara

Next, the group ascended to the Visitors’ Centre and the Museum. The Museum had both static and interactive displays with  a great deal of interesting information on the Warragamba Dam’s specifications and construction . The displays also provided information on the ancillary dams such as the Cordeaux , Avon and Cataract . As Warragamba Dam provides approximately 80% of the Sydney water supply it has by far the biggest capacity of over 2,000 gigalitres.

Part of the group worked its way around the various wall displays while another part of the group watched an interesting documentary on the construction, history of the Warragamba Dam and some of the numerous people involved. Vanesa had suggested having lunch at the Warragamba Workers’ Club rather than the Wallacia Hotel (acquired knowledge from living in the area).

group pic

So the group returned to their vehicles . Darko should be commended for being particularly helpful in assisting the group to find parking around the Dam’s Visitors’ Centre and later at the Warragamba Workers’ Club. The group signed in at the Warragamba Workers’ Club and proceeded to order lunch. The Club proved to have a very pleasant and peaceful ambience as well as good, well priced food. Ray was particularly surprised at getting a full sized bottle of Semillon Sauvignon Blanc for $12 – this was a non-members price!

The day had proven to be a complete success despite the somewhat dubious start . The Museum had been interesting and informative , the lunch at the Warragamba Workers’ Club had been of good quality and well-priced and the company and companionship of the members exceptional.

– Ray