The scene of Australia's first Gold Rush, Ophir Reserve is a rugged yet peaceful reminder of the colonial past. The first Australian payable gold discovery was made here in 1851, just 30 kilometres north east of Orange. Now a picturesque picnic and camping ground at the junction of the Lewis Ponds and Summer Hill Creeks evidence of old alluvial, reef and deep lead mines is still visible to those exploring the area.
While Ophir has much to offer with camping, fishing, fossicking and exploring the old diggings, it is not a "museum" and remains much as the diggers left it all those years ago. Care should be taken around the old open mine shafts. Hire a gold pan from the Orange Visitor Information Centre and try your luck in Summer Hill Creek just as the early settlers did during the gold rush of the 1850s.