In the red mallee country of south-western New South Wales, the Gorman family has diversification down to a fine art on Koolaman Station.
Story By Nathan Dyer
On a warm autumn afternoon in April, the paddocks and mallee scrub of Koolaman Station are tinged green. Early rains have resulted in one of the best starts to the cropping season in years on the New South Wales property and the station’s Merino flock are as happy as sheep in clover.
Resting on her motorbike beside Koolaman’s mailbox, however, Eliza Gorman couldn’t care less about crops and rainfall. The nine-year-old is more excited about what the postie has left in the white metal box. “I love checking the mail,” declares Eliza through the muffling hindrance of a helmet. “Especially when it’s my birthday and my aunties and uncles send me letters,” she says, handing today’s haul to brother Gus, who has followed her in his farm bomb, a 1974 Toyota Corolla with only one front seat. Gus takes a brief look and stuffs some bills, a newspaper and a few letters in a bag. “I like checking the mail, too,” says the 10-year-old with a cheeky grin. “Because I always go past Granny Sue’s on the way home, and she gives me lollies.”
Nestled on the edge of the Willandra Lakes World Heritage Area, 45 kilometres north-east of Robinvale and 70km north-west of Balranald, 28,300-hectare Koolaman Station is home to three generations of Gormans. Grandparents Sue and Brendan live in their home near the front gate, while Gus, Eliza and their younger sibling Bella live with their parents Christian and Lisa beyond the machinery sheds in the main homestead. A well-worn path between the two houses tracks the daily visits of the grandchildren.
This Story is from Issue #103
Outback Magazine: Oct/Nov 2015