G'day all, what I miss most travelling by train today is the open window and the closeness to the sights and sounds....... the immediacy.
It could never get much more immediate than riding in the van of a very slow roadside goods train on the long stretch between Rockhampton and Mackay, if I'm not wrong it took well upward of 12 hours for the 201 miles, 320 odd kilometres, picking up and setting out wagons everywhere and waiting for crosses and overtakes. And in between we might have hit 30mph occasionally.
But if I may quote the title of Cliff Olds's wonderful railway autobiography "I wouldn't have missed it for quids". [the quid being the slang term for the pound, our old pre decimal unit of currency and quids meaning a lot of 'em].
I've no idea which places the three attached photos were taken at, except that from the frame numbers that they were taken on this long stretch. There is a chimney and smoke visible behind the trees in the shot of the C17 [957?] so there must be a sugar mill there. One of our Queenslanders should be able to put me right.
1070 was on a southbound goods just like our northbound.......the van of our train is just visible and I think we crossed the Yank not too far out of Rocky.
That was railroading in the old Queensland way and you won't see it anywhere in Australia today. Here there be Tilt Trains.
I'd love to make that trip again but I suppose at a pinch I could settle for an air-conditioned sleeper.