Burracoppin Well – Well No. 9

Location

257 kilometres (straight line) east of Perth.
216 kilometres along Hunts Track.
23 kilometres (straight line) north-east of Merredin.
1.9 kilometres (straight line) from Burracoppin.

GPS Coordinates

 

UTM
Zone 50J
641799 metres East
16524429 metres North

DMS
31°24'21.96" S
118°29'29.82" E

Directions

From Great Eastern Highway

At Burracoppin turn SSE onto Hunt Street and travel 1.2 km to Goldfields Road. Turn left and proceed 400 metres to the turnoff on the south side of the road. The plaque is 100 metres past the carpark entry and, since 2021, has been signposted.

Along Hunts Track

After crossing Great Eastern Highway continue 6.9 kilometres along Goldfields Road to Burracoppin Well.

A sign indicating the location of the well was relocated to a more meaningful position in 2021.

 

Condition

Intact, however, it needs refurbishment.

Vegetation has been cleared from around the well and continues to be removed on an irregular basis.

The well needs cleaning out and the rock walls assessed.

A fence around it would help in its protection.

Authority

Shire of Merredin
9041 1611

History

Burracoppin was one of Hunt’s major depots near the start of his track, his 10th camp east of York on his 1865 Wells and Tracks Expedition. Today Burracoppin is a wheat farming town east of Merredin. Hunt’s Well is just south of the town.

Hunt recorded:

23 February 1865. Thursday. 0h 30m p.m. halt at Burrancooping found the remainder of the party on sinking a well, collecting stone, timber etc. 5h p.m. discontinued sinking untill I can collect materials to build it up with at once, as it is impossible to get on with sinking it being through sand and the water coming in very fast, more than two men can bale out and keep under.

24 February 1865. Friday. … the whole of the party engaged about the well, collecting and casting stone, timber & after much trouble we succeeded in getting in the foundation for the well, the sand and water coming in at fast as four men could bale. …. 5h p.m. finished the well No.9 which proves to be a very good one, depth 7 feet, breadth at bottom 7½ feet, top 9½ feet, the water flowed in at the rate of about 150 gallons per hour, to the depth of three feet.

Burancooping, from which the town’s name is clearly derived, is an aboriginal word meaning ‘near a big hill’.

Rabbit Proof Fence No. 1 was started from Burracoppin in 1901, south to Esperance and north towards Port Hedland. The gates and wells along the Fence are numbered from Burracoppin.