Sunday 27 April 2008 by Robyn Van Dyk. 5 comments
News, Battlefield Tours, Gallipoli

A couple of days after the landing on the 25th April 1915 the weather turned bitterly cold for the ANZACs dug in at Gallipoli. Having been blessed with the weather so far, the battlefield tour received a good dose of what it would have been like for the diggers in 1915.

Most of us on the tour agree that we have just spent the coldest night of our lives camped out for the Dawn Service! We left the hotel at 12 am in order to arrive at ANZAC Cove ahead of the pack and reserve some seats for the service which was to start at 4:30 am. As the temperature at ANZAC Cove was forecast to fall to -3 degrees we dressed like "Michelin men". When we arrived we realised that the pack were already there ahead of us and it was a struggle to get seats. Although in the end we all managed to find seating amongst the 12,000 strong crowd. Several of us managed to squeeze in with the large contingent who had been camping out on the grounds for several hours ahead of us. Those who did this all agreed that they had made the right choice as there is warmth in numbers.

Camping for the Dawn Service photograph by Peter Rubinstein

Some of the AWM’s Battlefield tour ‘camping out’. Photograph by Peter Rubinstein

The Gallipoli Dawn Service was very beautiful and deeply moving. We watched the sun light up ANZAC Cove and the Sphinx behind us as we commemorated the thousands who lost their lives on both sides in the Gallipoli campaign and all soldiers who have died in subsequent wars.

The Sphinx at dawn. Photograph by Peter Rubinstein

Following the Dawn Service we walked for about a kilometre up Artillery Road to Lone Pine for the Australian service.

Australian Service Lone Pine

Members of the battlefield tour laying the wreath on behalf of the tour; Peter and Joan McDougall (top right); Heather Dodd (bottom right)

Comments

Matt b

Finally a joint service that New zealanders, aussies and the turks can be proud of, the one thing that upset me was the ugly "Gallipoli 2008" yellow jackets i saw mixed into the crowds, more insulting marketing than patriotic display.

Jeremy

-3 deg!! I thought it was even colder than that! Glad I did it but gladder I don't live in such a cold place.

c townsend

I wasnt happy with the hawkers selling wares at lone pine I have no problem with food being sold but the other things> I think on anzac day nothing should be peddled except food

Chris

Matt I cannot agree with you enough. It annoys me so much when I see people wearing flags as capes, stick-on flag tattooos on their faces and the matching tour jackets. There is a organisation called 'The Fanatics'. Look for their website and you will see that they are the rent-a-crowd for sports events and are now responsible for the matching "gallipoli 2008" hoodies.

Anne

You guys shouldn't take yourselves so seriously. My son was under one of those yellow hoodies. After being overseas for almost a year the Fanatics was a great way to meet up with other like minded Aussies who, like you, are very proud of their country.