Jan and Rod Waddington enjoy entertaining visitors in the restaurant on their high-country cattle farm, but every winter they pack up and head somewhere even more extraordinary.

Story By Sue Wallace

Tales of Victoria’s high country have always intrigued Jan Waddington, whose grandfather built the iconic Wallace Hut in the rugged Alpine National Park in 1889. “My father would often take my brother and I up there when we were young and tell us all about how my grandfather William Wallace and his brothers, Arthur and Stewart, built the hut from slabs of snow gum and split woollybutt for shingles for the roof, and how they would take cattle up there,” Jan says. “I still love going up there today.”
Jan and her brother grew up on part of the historic Wallacedale property nestled in the rolling hills of Kergunyah in the Kiewa Valley that was purchased by the Wallace family in 1869.“It was such an idyllic childhood,” she says. “We would ride our horses all day in the holidays and spend the day with our cousins at the creek, dodging the occasional snake.”
Jan and husband Rod took over part of the subdivided property in the 1970s and have retained the same bloodline of Herefords that date back 140 years. “My great-grandfather, David Wallace, brought the Hereford strain from England and it would have to be one of the oldest in Australia these days,” she says.

This Story is from Issue #95

Outback Magazine: June/July 2014