Sunday, November 1, 2009

Driving Creek Railway -- rail and pottery entwined

I'm still recovering somewhat from a day excursion yesterday with the West Auckland Historical Society out to the Coromandel Peninsula and the Driving Creek Railway -- but it was a terrific day.


I could blat on about a bit of the site's history, but the folks at DCR have done a great job already on their own website. So, here's some shots with a bit of commentary.





DCR is where rail and pottery are entwined. Here, you really won't find one without the other for long .The ride along the line, up to the Eyefull Tower and back again isn't just a curving, zig-zag trundle through native bush where you play "Spot the species." All sorts of odd bits and pieces are there for the eyes to catch sight of, before the trains take you around that next bend.


Including retaining walls made up of hundreds of wine bottles -- some forming words to read as you pass by.




The terminus -- the Eyefull Tower. No, that isn't a spelling mistake -- you truly do get an eyefull of views up there.


The trains, hauled by "Linx" (built 2004) and "Snake" (built 1992)  at the tower platform.



Pottery pieces also grace the tower, inside and out.



Two parts of the line leading to the tower.


More pottery on the curving walkway down to the platform.




And ... we're off back down again.





The start and finish point.


More pottery artwork ...





In case you get lost ...


The "Elephant". No. 2 locomotive, commissioned back in 1978, now called (according to the information booklet I bought), the "vintage" train. It's used on goods and construction works. (No. 1 loco which virtually built the line is called "Dieselmouse".)


Last thing photographed before we boarded the bus to head back to Coromandel township. That has to be the funkiest and tallest plant pot I've ever seen.


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