Wednesday, January 01, 2014

What, another year already?

I quick check this morning shows that I have not written a blog post in over a month. Personally I'm blaming the garden...
I've also been on overseas travels for A family Christmas (the lady of the house's side that is).
This time I managed to wangle a trip to one of the 'best preservation lines in the world', Puffing Billy in Melbourne. I'll let the photo's do the talking.

'Belgrave station. Na class 8A waits for the doors to shut.'
'We moved about 150 meters round a curve and then stopped. Just when I thought I was being had, a train turned up from the other direction.'
'20minutes travel saw us to Menzies creek, 1/2 way between Belgrave and out destination Lakeside.'
'The presentation was very impressive. It could have been 100 years ago.'
'Another Na leaves Lakeside with a 10 coach train. The drivers were not sparing the loco's, 100 years old or not.'
'The line runs through Australian native bush for much of the length between Belgrave and Lakeside. This is the return trip.'
'I had to get a photo on the famous bridge.'
'Tanking up before the last trip of the day. Seems to be good on coal too.'
 We only traveled 1/2 the line but that was good enough for a 1/2 day out with the extended family. So, what are my opinions. First up, Australian trains are really not my cup of tea. They just don't do anything for me. Having said that, this is the best heritage railway I have seen. Nothing comes close in this county in overall presentation. Everything was clean, neat and tidy. The staff (almost all volunteers) were helpful and talkative. They all seemed to be enjoying their day, even if it was boxing day. The locos were all driven hard up the hills, and down hill were allowed to run at a fair clip. The price (for a party of 6 adults and 3 kids) was a bit eye watering but I would do it again without hesitation.

In a time honored tradition of the railway, you are allowed to sit up on the windows and hang your legs out the sides (there are bars holding you in). As I participated in this tradition I wondered how many tonnes of paperwork would have to be filled out to do something similar in this country.

'No Hi-Viz in sight.'


beaka said...

cheers Herr Druff. I completely agree with your comments about Aussie trains. Maybe it has something to do with shocking colours they paint them. I had received some photos recently from a friend that showed a lovely looking restored Climax at this Railway line. Did you see any signs of one on your visit?

Motorised Dandruff said...

No, but I didn't look in all the sheds :v).
Apparently (I was told) that its too slow for the tourist trains, but gets used on works trains.

Anonymous said...

Great having no Hi-Viz. It spoils the look of so many "period photos".