Long before iPads distracted little children on long road trips to the South Coast, David and Barbara Carter created Pooh Bear's Corner on the Kings Highway near the top of Clyde Mountain.
Weary of "when are we there?" moans that came and went as often as milestones the Crookwell seed potato farmers sowed the idea 44 years ago, of a hideaway in a hallow. In an instant it cut their trip to their holiday home at Rosedale in half, for their son Peter, 3, and daughter Heidi, 4.
"We would say, 'we are nearly at Pooh Bear's hole, we knew we were nearly at the coast when we got to Pooh Bear's Corner," Mrs Carter said.
"We put cardboard signs and wooden signs there each time we passed, David always worried we would be in trouble so it had to be done quickly. Then we noticed other people were leaving teddy bears or honey or just a little message for Pooh."
As the years and miles rolled on two more daughters arrived for the Carters, Jo and Bridget. Peter and Heidi set out as early as they could to puncture the myth. That's not Pooh Bear's hole, they said, it was an ordinary old hole to let water through.
They were too late though, Pooh Bear had captured the attention of families from near and far. In 1992, when major works were flagged for the road the Carters wrote to Eurobodalla Shire Council asking for a vandal-proof sign. Weeks passed. Then a letter arrived, under Gothic lettering announcing it was from the Council of the Shire of Eurobodalla.
The family's efforts were interesting and refreshing, the council wrote, before revealing a public promotion would be launched to pay for a vandal and thief-proof sign.
"You may be assured that council shares your interest in the preservation of this famous landmark," the shire clerk, Mr A W Ratcliffe, said.
The Carters were overjoyed. "They had a good sense of humour, I take my hat off to the Eurobodalla Shire, because they took it on board and enjoyed the fun of it," Mrs Carter said..
"Now I believe it sustains lots of other people, there are many, many bears there. We take photos of all the people. Christmas is a lovely time, Pooh Bear gets a lot of honey and beer and all sorts of things."
Mrs Carter said a lovely rain forest to the left of Pooh Corner rewarded anyone who happened to drop by and was prepared to look around.The origins of the hole remain a mystery. One theory was the hollow was dug and filled with explosives, which would be detonated if the Japanese invaded during World War II.
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