Saturday, April 28, 2001

The Cockatoo Run Snapshots

We flew back to Sydney at Easter to join the celebrations for a friend's birthday. These were to take place on a train drawn by the famous 3801 steam engine, journeying along what's called the Cockatoo Run. The Cockatoo Run operates from Sydney to Moss Vale via Wollongong. Steam means soot, and there was soon a fine layer of soot throughout the train; by the end of the day it was everywhere - in our clothes and hair. We now know why everyone wore travelling jackets when this was the common mode of transport. At Moss Vale we commandeered the band stand in the local park for the cake-cutting ceremony before boarding the train for the return journey.

This is the 3801 steam locomotive. We stopped at Summit Tank in the Illawarra Ranges to view Wollongong and Lake Illawarra from the lookout.
The view of Wollongong and Lake Illawarra from the Summit Tank lookout.
One of the stations on the Cockatoo Run is Robertson. Robertson has more recently become known as "Babe country", as in the movie "Babe".

Robertson is in the centre of the largest potato-growing district of New South Wales. I think there is a "Big Potato" tourist attraction.

Some passengers stopped here for lunch at Ranelagh House. Others stopped here because the guides advised that there was more to do in Robertson than in Moss Vale.

There is something about steam locomotives - black and white or sepia photographs seem appropriate.

All along the train route there were people out waving to the train or photographing the train. The reason might have been that a coal-fed engine was used rather than the usual diesel-hauled engine.

Our friend cutting his cake.

We gathered in a small park near Moss Vale station for ceremonies, cake and champagne.

The train at Moss Vale station.
A view of the train as we go over the viaduct.

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