The Queensland man -- who gave only his first name, Geoffrey -- hid the family's gold collection in garbage bags after his GPS navigation system and keys were recently stolen, The Courier-Mail in Brisbane reported in its Tuesday edition.
"I had this great idea to split the gold into three rubbish bags so if the thieves did come in they're not going to find it," Geoffrey said.
The valuable trash bags, however, ended up in the local landfill last week when the man's children cleaned house in anticipation of an upcoming move.
The Sunshine Coast Regional Council said that while it sympathizes with the family's loss, searching the landfill, which takes in about 1,400 tons of waste each week, would be next to impossible.
"To locate the lost items, this decaying compacted waste would need to be systemically excavated and sorted mechanically by the contractor," a council spokesman said.