This is Wharminda, on the Port Lincoln Division of The South Australian Railways late in the afternoon of the 4th of January 1963. We are 87 1/4 miles from Port Lincoln and it will be after midnight when we get there.
I became interested in, I should probably say aware of, this narrow gauge Division when my Grandma dug out a pre-war S.A.R. passenger timetable which listed the fortnightly Mount Hope goods, possibly the most infrequent regularly timetabled train in Australia at the time. It was still listed in the 1962 edition so just after Christmas 1962 I set off for Mount Hope via Sydney, Broken Hill, Port Augusta and Port Lincoln arriving there in time to catch the weekly train to Buckleboo which was Brill motor 105 towing a tiny Fageol trailer. There were four of us travelling and when we reached Rudall we transferred to 262 up goods with 209 on the front and ambled along to Wharminda for a crew change, believe it or not there was a barracks at this forsaken spot. You'd hope the crews carried plenty of tucker because it was a long way to the shop!
There was still a lot of bagged wheat on the Eyre Peninsula at this time, I think this silo would have been pretty recent.
When we got back to Port Lincoln we had two days to wait for the next train but the Stationmaster had left the Waiting Room open for us so we made ourselves comfortable.
Mount Hope next week.
The train order issued at Darke Peak reads: Train 262
Proceed to Rudall, cross Pass. 191, Car 105. Then proceed to Wharminda, take main line. Report Kielpa and Verran.
Best regards to all, and welcome to new members,
P.S. Hope you appreciated the last week off, I thought you all deserved a rest.