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'The Don River Railway's MA 2 Pacific class' steam locomotive' posted by Doug Kirkpatrick


'This is me loading up the firebox with shovel loads of coal (August 1994)' posted by Doug Kirkpatrick


'Travelling in style - painters cap not exactly  'historic uniform' but it did the job' posted by Doug Kirkpatrick


Riding into history on a vintage train in Tasmania

an experience of holidays

On Tasmania's northwest coast is a wonderful preservation railway called the Don River Railway. I spent a few years there in my youth as a volunteer with a team of like minded people building tracks, restoring carriages, firing steam locomotives, clicking tickets, running trains and making sure rail heritage in Tasmania survived for future generations.
 
The one experience I always remember about the trains of the Don River Railway was the wonderfully clear Tasmanian air blowing gently through the gum trees alongside the Don River, mixing the scent of Eucalypts with the sweet tinge of coal smoke from the engine.
 
I worked at the Don River Railway when it was run entirely by volunteers. But times have changed, the operations has grown and now it's operated by a mix of staff and volunteers.
 
In fact, it's become such a successful tourist destination the railway runs mainline trips now boasts it's own post office. Yep - you can go to the Don River Railway to post a letter.
 
Thirty years ago we built the tracks with shovels and dog-hammers to drive home the dog spikes. Now, they've got pneumatic machinery to handle the job. A good thing as there's so much work to do to reclaim and recover lost locomotives and quaint carriages before they're all blighted by rot and scrap-metal recycling.
 
If you're in Tasmania, call in and take a ride into history. The Don River Railways runs vintage steam and diesel trains seven days. And the museum and workshop complex offer an extraordinary experience of the complex work of building, maintaining and running trains.
 

 
Thanks to
Doug Kirkpatrick
from Melbourne
on 25/06/2008 send a message to Doug Kirkpatrick

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Other Experiences of Doug Kirkpatrick

Those ticking street posts, Frequent flyers??, Max the dog, Flag on a dumpster, My backyard clotheslines, Clever street art, Australia Day in Port Hedland, Passing road trains, Lawn in the Pilbara, Big Australian Sky, Flying art, Lunchtime for 'Wombat', Hand of Friendship, Dodging busted Telecom pits, Tuned in to the nation, Hanging out to dry, Swimming Pool for One, broken flags, Genuine Aussie gladiators..., Shark Wrestling in South Australia, The Sydney-to-Hobart, Fantales - things of beauty, Street Junk, Dining IN, tradie's bit for the nation, Clean-up Day, ANZAC biscuits help keep peace in Kashmir, Cops on the beat, Spiders lurking, Eating Violet Crumbles, Coastal sandstone, Living among the gum trees, Feeling of wool, Outdoor shower, Regarding the 'Coathanger', Pausing to honour the 'Diggers', The rural gatepost where yarns are had, Celebrating Australia Day in Port Hedland, P-Plate, Kirribilli commute, Oz Day in the city, Dancing with the Stars - in Milson's Point, Sydney, Weekday oasis of calm, Bondi Beach - historic more than bohemian, Plunging escarpments ain't always pretty, Feeding wild lorikeets on the verandah at home, Walking the streets of Sydney, When you're driving in Australia..., Melbourne Cup in Martin Place, Taking a punt on the Melbourne Cup - Part 1 of 2, Taking a punt on the Melbourne Cup - Part 2 of 2, Cyclone Tracy revisited, Hot date with a Maytag washer in Darwin, The Port Hedland detention centre, Not ice, nor 'Ice', nor snow. Just Pilbara salt, Railmotor from Werris Creek, Camping with wild pigs, Telephone sockets in Australia, Werris Creek Station, Leaving their mark in stone, Being Australian on Christmas Day (Bondi Beach pt1), Christmas Day at Bondi Beach (pt2), Christmas Day at Bondi Beach (pt3), Camping holiday - best way to see Australia

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