Bairnsdale is a large provincial town situated on the Mitchell River in Gippsland, 285 km east of Melbourne. The Bairnsdale run, on the west bank of the river, was occupied by Archibald McLeod from 1844. It was named after his birthplace, Bernisdale in Scotland. On the eastern bank was the Lucknow run, taken up in 1842. The Aboriginal word for the area, Wy Yung meaning duck, now names a locality north of Bairnsdale.