‘Woo Back!’ World Record

WE DID IT AUSTRALIA!

Heavy horse ploughing for the World Record near Yass, New South Wales, Australia on 4 May 2014

On Sunday (4 May 2014) the World Record for Heavy Horses Ploughing was set at the “Woo Back!” Event on a property in Yass Valley, New South Wales, Australia.

Twenty-eight heavy horses, in pairs or singly, tilled the ground with antique ploughs. A crowd of over 5000 spectators braved the autumn chill to watch the record go down in history!

The feat has now been set in the Guinness Book of World Records for “The greatest number of horse drawn ploughmen/women to plough a paddock at the same time.”

A two year old heavy horse in training with a young handler.

They came from near and far across the country – from the city and the town, across the ranges and the paddocks – and that was just our family!

The giant horses lined up before the crest of the turned paddock, facing into the chill wind. Leather collars and harnesses with brasses and silver shone under heavy skies.

 

The crowd huddled by the marshal’s stand and stretched down the paddock, lining the fences.

Bagpipes echoed across the green hills. Then a young voice’s sweet tones called a hush over the crowd singing “Amazing Grace” and the Australian national anthem, “Advance Australia Fair”.

A school bell rang out to mark the start.

 

Heavy horses ploughing for the World Record set at Yass, NSW, Australia on 4 May 2014

Twenty-eight Clydesdales, Shires, Draught Horses, Cobs and other heavy breeds pulled at their horse collars and plodded over the rise to the edge of the paddock and then turned back on their own furrows.

 

Heavy horses ploughing for the World Record at Yass NSW Australia, on 4 May 2014

All manner of reconditioned ploughs, harrows, and scarifiers tasted the dirt again, some after lying idle for a generation. Some of the ploughs had even been used on the “Willow Vale” property by the father of the current owner.

Woo Back! 2014, Yass NSW Australia_15_cpyrgt

What  a truly magnificent sight! History in the making and living history.

A glorious tribute to the farming pioneers of this country and a fascinating showcase for the beautiful horses.

Congratulations to all four-legged and two-legged participants!!

More photos of the “Woo Back!” Event will follow, including antique farm machinery, carriages and vintage tractors.

The Woo Back! event was held at “Willow Vale”, Hardwicke Lane, Yass, NSW, Australia on 4 May 2014

"Willow Vale" property near Yass, New South Wales, Australia

“Willow Vale” property near Yass, New South Wales, Australia

For more information on WOO BACK! 2014 see the official website and Facebook page: 

www.wooback.com.au

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Wooback-Yass-World-Record

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For the TV news coverage of the World Record go to:

Heavy horses set a new ploughing record in Yass.

ABC News (online), Mon 5 May 2014, 7:34am AEST

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-05-04/horsepower-on-display-at-yass/5429350

Big Horses – Big Hearts

ABC News (online), Mon 17 Mar 2014, 1:32pm AEDT

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-17/big-horses—big-hearts/5326006

Shearers: Blue singlets and boots

'Westbourne', Berremangra Rd via Bookham, New South Wales, Australia

‘Westbourne’ shearers’ quarters

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On a back road from Yass to Harden (New South Wales, Australia), heading into a rolling green valley, we drove on tar covered with cow pats.

A rambling old homestead overlooks a dam, a Soldier Settlement property of many decades and many acres.

Down the road the shearers’ quarters waits silently in the sinking gold of the afternoon. Many doors lead to many rooms. Nearby a meat hanging room is empty and well-scrubbed.

The well-worn tar road binds these shearers’ quarters to their purpose, the wool shed.

I wonder how many boots have climbed the stoop, weary from a long hot day bent over wool? How many heads have rested on a ticking mattress, too weary to undress before sleep?

And how many bristled chins have then risen with first light to a plate of eggs and bread? To stride to ‘the boards’ for another day bent over the shears in a blue singlet?

The shearers’ rooms are quiet now – dust motes dancing in the light through the windows – waiting for the next season.  ♦

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Aussie icons, ‘One Shot Wonders’ series

– To mark Australia Day on January 26, my ‘One Shot Wonders’ this week will feature good old Aussie icons.

Photo taken 17 November 2013, with Canon PowerShot A550

‘Westbourne’ shearers’ quarters, Berremangra Rd, between Jugiong and Bookham, New South Wales, Australia

Notes:

Sheep are an important part of Australia’s history. They were brought to Australia with the First Fleet of convicts and soldiers on 26 January 1788.

Yass Valley and nearby Harden Shire of New South Wales are among the important sheep raising areas of Australia, for meat and fine wool production.

Sheep safely grazing

Sheep on 'Windouran' property, Burley Griffin Way, near Harden, New South Wales, Australia

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(Play http://youtu.be/D8h4ROAgW1I – ‘Sheep May Safely Graze’, Aria from Cantata BWV No. 208 by JS Bach)

To mark Australia Day on January 26, my ‘One Shot Wonders’ this week will feature some good old Aussie icons.

Sheep are an important part of Australia’s history, and export industry.

They were brought to Australia with the First Fleet of convicts and soldiers on 26 January 1788. Initially they were only to provide meat for the new colony (LandLearn NSW).

In the early years, Spanish Merino sheep were developed by John and Elizabeth Macarthur, which were better suited to the hot Australian summers.

Yass Valley and nearby Boorowa and Harden Shires of New South Wales are among the important sheep raising areas of Australia, for meat and fine wool production.

Some woolly fast facts:

  • ‘The Australian national sheep flock is 74.7 million head.’ (Meat and Livestock Australia 2013)
  • ‘Australia produces approximately 6% of the world’s lamb and mutton supply.’ (MLA 2013)
  • ‘Australia is the largest wool-producing country in the world.’ (australia.gov.au 2007)
  • ‘Our annual production consistently accounts for over one quarter of the world’s wool and is often valued at well over $2 billion each year. Australia is also recognised as producing the world’s highest quality woollen fibre – Australian merino wool.’ (australia.gov.au 2007)  

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Aussie icons, ‘One Shot Wonders’ series

Photo taken 17 November 2013, with Fuji FinePix S2980

‘Windouran’ property, Burley Griffin Way near Harden, New South Wales, Australia

Sources

LandLearn NSW n.d., ‘Sheep Aren’t Native Animals, So How Did They Get Here?’, NSW Dept of Primary Industries et al, accessed 28 January 2014, http://www.landlearnnsw.org.au/?a=266574.

Meat and Livestock Australia 2013, ‘Sheep’, Meat and Livestock Australia, accessed 28 January 2014, http://www.mla.com.au/Cattle-sheep-and-goat-industries/Industry-overview/Sheep.

[australia.gov.au] Dept of Finance 2007, ‘The Macarthurs and the merino sheep’, Australian Government, accessed 28 January 2014, http://australia.gov.au/about-australia/australian-story/macarthurs-and-the-merino-sheep.

Boundary Rider (‘One Shot Wonders’, Fences)

Old wheel fence, Yass River Road, New South Wales, Australia

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Also otherwise known as ‘re—cycling’. (…Sorry couldn’t help myself!)

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This is the front fence of the house paddock of a Yass River Road property.

We were out for the afternoon to stir up some dust, as usual, and spotted this on our meanders.

We pulled over as far as we could on the narrow-ish dirt road. I clambered up the bank and took some shots, after first bashing the long grass with an even loooonger stick to scare off any lurking browns (snakes).

An intermittent stream of white utes* went up and down the road.

Being the country, everyone slowed down to see if we needed help. With the camera in hand, a one-finger-wave and a nod and the locals went off smiling on their way.  ♦

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Fences, ‘One Shot Wonders’

Photo taken 1 November 2013, with Fuji FinePix S2980

Yass River Road, Yass Valley, New South Wales, Australia

This was taken last November after our last main falls of rain. What a difference a few months makes! Long green grass is now one inch yellow stubble.

* ‘utes’ – utility trucks or pick-up trucks

Old forgotten homestead (‘One Shot Wonders’)

A couple of years ago, on one of our ‘explores’ of the farmland and back roads out of town, we suddenly came across this old abandoned homestead. It was one of those ‘Wow, did you see that? Can you go back?’ times.

Pioneer homestead on a road out of Yass town, New South Wales, Australia

‘Forgotten’…but not gone

Tucked way back off the road in a copse of ancient garden and backed by thick scrub, it was a lucky thing I caught sight of it. The afternoon was blackening with a storm and the house was camouflaged in its dark, age-mellowed timbers and brown rusted iron. If it wasn’t winter, I may not have seen the homestead at all as the granddaddy trees would be shading most of the front and back verandas.

Continue reading

Milk or cream? (‘One Shot Wonders’)

Old horse-drawn cream? cart, Rollonin Cafe, Bowning, New South Wales, Australia

Doin’ the can-can

This cart is parked at Rollonin Cafe in Bowning village (New South Wales, Australia).

It brings back memories of the good old days of real milk with cream on top!  ♦

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‘One Shot Wonders’ series

Photo taken 4 August 2013, with my old camera Canon Powershot A550

More information

Bowning is just off the Hume Highway, the main road from Sydney to Melbourne, about a 10 minute drive from Yass. 

288.5km from Sydney – 2 hours 55 mins

591.9km from Melbourne – 5 hours 41 mins [google maps]

Another post on Daytripper Sippers about Bowning:

Paddock Perfect: the pastoral way, not the Highway

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Rollonin Cafe 144 Bowning Road, Bowning, New South Wales, Australia, (02) 6227 6507

Hours
Mon: 08:30 – 16:00
Thu – Sun: 08:30 – 16:00

‘Rollonin Cafe is a traditional slab hut café in the village of Bowning. The Cafe has a country atmosphere and friendly staff. Serving light breakfasts, morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea.’

[https://www.facebook.com/RolloninCafe]