Gold may be what Kal’s fortune is built on, but in the desert water is even more precious and the town would be nothing without its “liquid gold”. For this the town’s residents must thank Irish engineer C.Y. O’Connor, whose idea it was to pump the town’s water 560km from Mundaring, in the hills above Perth. A pipeline was duly constructed and opened in 1903, terminating today at Mount Charlotte lookout, where you can view displays on this magnificent feat of engineering. Although his scheme supplies the residents of Kalgoorlie – along with many other Outback towns and farms – with their water, sadly O’Connor was the subject of much ridicule for his plans and never saw the scheme completed, taking his own life in 1902 by shooting himself while riding on his horse into the water in Fremantle.

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