Whilst at SIBA Buddhist Retreat I took myself off on a day trip to the Buchan Caves, a 40 minute drive away.
I booked onto both the Royal and Fairy Cave tours. There was only myself and 2 others on the Royal Cave tour, so it was much more relaxed than the Fairy Cave experience, and the rules against stopping to take photos in the walkways were disregarded. I thoroughly enjoyed learning about how the limestone caves were formed millions of years ago, and also how they were discovered…
A young lad called Frank Moon, 110 years ago, used to pretend to his parents that he was being a good boy and attending school daily. In reality he was searching for caves, equipped with just a candle, a rope and his spirit of adventure.
The story of Frank and his solo explorations discovering caves really interested me; I was in awe of how a boy so early in his years could have the courage – and want – to drop down, in darkness, into the unknown on a rope with a mere candle for a light when he touched ground, unaware of how far that may be. What a brave young fellow he was.
One other thing that I particularly liked hearing about from our guide Lex (amongst the duplicate jokes and stories because I’d been on back-to-back tours with him) was the reason for the ‘bacon rasher’ looking features in the caves. He explained how the layers and colouring prove the earth has been warning up and cooling down for millions of years; it’s a pretty natural phenomenon.
Lex informed us that there’s a few grand buildings in Melbourne that are decked out in Buchan stone from the quarry nearby, so I added them to my list of places to visit in the city soon.
Coming up – My journey west to Buninyong.