Oturehua, Central Otago, New Zealand

OturehuaOturehua church

 Originally known as Rough Ridge, Oturehua is now a quiet little farming community in the Ida Valley.

Perhaps the most famous of its historical sites is Hayes Engineering Works, established in 1895 by Ernest Hayes.
This is where he invented the world famous Hayes Wire Strainer, and the Hayes Windmill.
This windmill is still in working order today.

Another historic building well worth a visit is Gilchrists Store, still with the original interior from 1899 still mostly intact.
A unique step back in time and still trading today.

Just down the road the Golden Progress Mine poppet head is still standing.
  The area was notoriously difficult to mine and impressive mining equipment was employed in an attempt to reach the gold.

OturehuaOturehua Gilchrist Store

One well-known attraction just outside Oturehua is the Idaburn Dam.
It is the site of the Brass Monkey Motorcycle Rally which is held during the first weekend in June every year.
The Rally attracts motorcyclists from all over the country and is very popular.
Although the participants have to be hardy souls as temperatures can often plummet well below freezing!!
The Dam is also a popular fishing spot for fishermen.

When weather conditions permit in the winters, the Dam is also host to the Bonspiel,
an ancient tournament for all Curling Clubs, which can only be held on natural ice.

Oturehua Idaburn DamOturehua Idaburn Dam

Oturehua Otago Central Rail TrailThings to do in Oturehua:

  • Historic Hayes Engineering Works
  • Gilchrists Store
  • Golden Progress Mine
  • Blackstone Hill School and Cemetery
  • Otago Central Rail Trail
  • Brass Monkey Rally
  • Curling and Ice skating

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