Archive for Leigh Creek coal train

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Posted in It's a Land Rover thing with tags , on September 20, 2008 by Dean
In a big country

In a big country

It takes a lot of patience to be a trainspotter in this part of the outback, especially when there is only the one train a day, well okay two if you include the return journey around four hours later. There is no strict timetable as such, but you just know that out of summer the train will usually pass through sometime between the hours of lunch and tea. During the scorching hot summer months the timetable is changed to reduce the risk of the train being derailed, it’s a time of the year when the lines get so hot they can quite easily buckle in the heat. Out here in this arid land, the mercury can fall off the end of the scale, with temperatures reaching 50 degrees centigrade or more. During these summer months the train, so I am told, passes through sometime between 11pm and the early hours of the morning. I for one have never heard the train at this ungodly hour let alone seen it.

So here we are, it’s one o’clock in the afternoon, just the two of us here in the Land Rover, patiently waiting, waiting, and waiting for the train. Well I am at least, for my mate Banjo has long given up, he’s stretched out in the back of the truck sound asleep, snoring, twitching, chasing roos or more than likely dreaming of tonight’s dinner, it sure is a dogs life.
Sitting here, parked up in a scenic lookout with commanding 360 degree views of the surrounding area, there’s not a cloud in the sky, you can see forever. The wind is softly whistling, flies are buzzing outside, a Wedge tailed eagle soars high above, and quite an amazing sight as I count thirty two Emus, both young and old at the side of the road grazing together or whatever it is that Emus do.

Through the windscreen, the flat arid land stretches out before me, red dirt, pale green foliage of the Saltbush, Flinders ranges to the side contrast beautifully with the clear deep blue sky. From my position perched up high, I can see the road going south and like a river it meanders slowly away, twenty kilometres into the distance as far as the eye can see, and not a vehicle in sight.

Finally the wait is over. Way over in the distance I finally see the headlight of the train. Not any old train, but the Leigh Creek coal train. Like a huge dreamtime snake of old, 2.3km in length crawling ever so slowly over the ancient desert floor.

Rest of the story can be found HERE


852365 – 033

Posted in The Australian Outback with tags , , , on August 29, 2008 by Dean


This weeks theme is the Australian Outback.
Here is a picture that I prepared earlier, last year in fact.
It is the view from ‘Redhill lookout’ just outside of Leigh Creek. On a clear day you can see forever.
Many an afternoon we would sit, Banjo and I perched upon high looking down from our lookout. 45 degree heat, clear blue skies, the buzzing of flies. The air would be still.

Waiting, waiting for the Leigh Creek coal train all 2.8km of it. Our patience eventually rewarded. There it is snaking along the floor of these ancient ranges like some dreamtime creature of old.

This image and more can be purchased from my website at REDBUBBLE