Perth to Sydney
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Kalgoorlie is a major gold mining area. In the early days water was scarce.
Eventually the brilliant engineer C Y O'Connor built a dam in the hills
east of Perth and constructed a water line with 8 pumping stations to supply the area.
It's still in use. Sadly he committed suicide due to the ridicule heaped on him
and he never saw its success, just 10 months after.
Wikipedia: Gold fields water supply
A dump truck used in the mines, now retired. Each tyre costs $40,000!
It is impressively big. This was in the Mining Museum, photo taken from
a front loader of comparable size.
A forlorn sign of past days.
This tower was used in a microwave link across the Nullarbor in about the 1970s. It had
some issues from the turbulent air caused by the summer heat.
I doubt that the link still works. There is a fibre cable running
adjacent to the train line. This tower also has a 3G cell antenna.
There is very little mobile coverage along the journey, sometimes
from a nearby (small) town.
It really is the Nullarbor, which is approximately 1,100km east to west,
across Western Australia and South Australia.
The train also carries supplies to small towns along the way, in
this instance for a farmer.
The Metropolis named Cook
Cook was a service centre for railway workers. Facilities included
a school and hospital. It is now a smaller facility for rail workers, including
shift changes of train crews. The buildings in the background are
accommodation for rail personnel.
The wording on the white box:
COOK: Queen City of the Nullarbor
Our Hospital needs your Help. Get Sick!
Typical Aussie humour.
Adelaide is the headquarters of
the operator of the 2 trains. We had breakfast at the Adelaide Oval after a
quick bus tour of the city.
Broken Hill was quite a source of silver, lead and zinc. Mining is still ongoing,
but a number of the mines have run out, causing a loss of employment.
The "off train" experience on the last night aboard is the drag show in the pub.
which is featured in the movie "Priscilla Queen of the Desert"
The room where the show happens. It was quite entertaining with the audience
having a great time, singing along.
Some of the decorated walls outside the "theatre" room. Not that
scenery around Broken Hill looks like that - it's mostly arid and flat.
Only 5 Hours To Central Station.
The fog started west of Lithgow - the start of the climb to the Blue Mountains.
The next generation of inter city trains are undergoing trials before
This train is stabled in the Lithgow train precinct.
A salute from the
Lithgow Zig Zag Railway,
which uses the original descent
tracks down the western side of the Blue Mountains. The zig zag soon
became a choke point, so a route with 10+ tunnels was created, and
is still used today.
The zig zag is now a tourist attraction.
On top of the Blue Mountains, and fog in the valley.
Morning fog as we cross the Nepean River, meaning less than 2 hours before
the journey ends.
My Compartment on the train.
The night setup in my train compartment.