Diary of a train trip.

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Woodie, Dec 19, 2001.

  1. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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  2. roryglasgow

    roryglasgow Active Member

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    This is all sad news... Our prayers go out to the families affected by the fires... Take care!

    -Rory
  3. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    tomorrow will be a doozie....

    Well, the forecast for tomorrow (Sunday) is for the worst fire day for many years. They have been burning since last Monday, and have had a respite for the last two days, but they are by no means put out yet. Tomorrow is expected to have temperatures of around 40C and high winds, and less than 5% humidity. Recipe for disaster, while there are even spot fires still buring. Some of the fires are still out of control, and affecting transport in/out of Sydney. I'll have to check late tomorrow arvo to see if the trains are running through the affected areas.

    Here's hoping tomorrow won't be the day they believe it will be.
  4. Bill Stone

    Bill Stone Member

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    Happy you're not in the path of the fires, Woodie.

    As a Californian, I know how bad wild fires can be.

    Our thoughts and sympathy to all the Austrailians being burned out, and/or fighting the fires.

    Bill
  5. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

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    Woodie;

    Is the north coast line the one I'll be riding from Brisbane to Sydney when I come to visit you in 18 months or so?

    Bob
  6. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    webcam

    Bob,

    Yep. That is the line from Brisbane to Sydney. I pick up the Brisbane/Sydney XPT at Casino on my return journey.
  7. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    Am I going?

    Well, I had better check to see if the trains are running. What number do I call..... 13 22 32. Hope the queue isn't like it was last time!

    **pushing phone buttons**

    4:16 pm waiting..........4:21pm still waiting......... 4.24 HOORAY! Yes, they expect the trains to be running, however the phone lines do not open till 6.30am and the train is at 7.15am. Not much opportunity to find out if circumstances change during the night. hmmmmmmm...... Will just have to turn up and see I suppose.
  8. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    wind change.

    A wind change has now come through and the wind has picked up as expected, but the temperature has cooled. Smoke is still a problem.

    Click here for a webcam of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House

    This is a fab webcam and lets you operate it, pan left/right, up/down, zoom in/out. Just click the "start control" button. Green time means you have control. Other time is a countdown until it's your turn. If you pan far left to the approaches to the Harbour Bridge, you will see the train line that crosses the bridge. Trains are every minute or so between 5am and midnight.

    The Opera House in the eerie light of the smoke haze.

    Attached Files:

  9. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    ....cont'd

    7:15am last Monday moring, and the Murwillumbah XPT TOOTed and off we went. I wasn't going to put up with baggage class, so upgraded the ticket to 1st Class.... Way to go I thought.

    The 8 car train was pretty empty when it left Central. I thought they had fibbed to me, that it was full. However it didn't take long. First stop, Strathfield. About 20 mins into the trip, and still in the suburbs. Half the train piles on.

    Next stop, Hornsby, a northern suburb of Sydney. A few more pile on. Glad I decided on the 1st class upgrade. 11 hours to go.

    TOOT'led along the track up through the Hawksbury, an area severely affected by the fires, where visibility was down to a few hundred metres at times.

    The rail bridge across the Hawkesbury.
    [​IMG]


    ........ to be continued.
  10. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

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    Woodie;

    Is this the train you ride to Casino? And then what happens? Hitch hike to Normanton:D :D

    Beautiful picture, but if youare on the train how did you take it too:D :D

    Look forward to the next installment

    Bob
  11. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    ..... cont'd

    TOOTing and trundling along the line, one of the major stops (and crew change) is Grafton.

    The bridge across the Clarence River at Grafton.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    Bridge facts and history - click here

    Grafton was declared a city in the mid-1880s, by which time its population had surpassed 4000. The arrival of the railway at Glen Innes in 1883 and the completion of the Casino to North Grafton line in 1905, contributed to a slow decline in Grafton's importance as a regional port although the river trade chugged along until the 1950s.

    In 1897 South Grafton established itself as a separate municipality and the two settlements were not amalgamated until 1956. This separation must have been due, in part, to the absence of a bridge. Remarkably, this situation was not rectified until 1932. It is even more remarkable when one considers that the rolling-stock of the Sydney-Brisbane railway (which reached South Grafton in 1915) had to be ferried across until that time. Still, when it did arrive it was a most unique construction, consisting of two storeys with the railway running underneath the road. It was, furthermore, a lift bridge, although the decline of the river trade saw the lift section sealed.
  12. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    .... next stop....

    another lovely stop along the way is Nambucca Heads. A coastal town and holiday destination.

    [​IMG]

    taken from the Nambucca Heads Rotary Club website click here

    The XPT approaches Nambucca Heads station.
    [​IMG]


    ....... to be continued.....
  13. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    The very start

    Just backing up a little........

    Newtown station (my local) which is two stops from Central. Where the journey began..... six tracks pass through Newtown, with 2 having a platform. (others are express to outer areas, and interstate).

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  14. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

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    Woodie;

    Great pictures! Keep up the good work. Glad to see mention of some of my fellow Rotarians. I checked out the site and although they need to update one place, the pictures and all are quite good.

    I'm going to be away for several days to help celebrate the 5th birthdays of our twin grand daughters. Will be back in the fold this coming Tuesday.

    Bob
  15. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    cont'd....

    Film does stay in cameras for a while! Anyway, back to the storybook. If you remember rightly, the trip was in doubt due to the Sydney fires.
    The XPT in the Sydney Olympics livery ready for a 7.15am departure from Sydney's Central Station. The smoke haze from the fires is clearly visible.

    Attached Files:

  16. Woodie

    Woodie Active Member

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    Smoko break.

    The XPT stops for everyone to have a smoko break at Port Macquarrie.

    Attached Files:

  17. roryglasgow

    roryglasgow Active Member

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    Great pics, Woodie! Thanks for the treat!

    That XPT looks pretty sleek...

    -Rory