Sunday, May 8, 2011

Two quick stops in Waihi

In April, on the way to Tauranga, just when I thought that the trip along the Paeroa to Tauranga road would involve me passing by tantalising bits of heritage stuff without a hope of a photo -- the bus stopped at Waihi to either drop someone off or pick someone up. And of all places for an Intercity bus stop ... the 1904 relocated Cornish Pumphouse, part of the Martha Mine setup. Yes, these shots were taken through the bus' window, but short of me getting that chance of stopping all along that wonderful bit of highway at all the cool places, this'll do. Check out the link for all the trouble they went to to conserve and preserve this example of our goldmining heritage. A gorgeous photo here, as well.

On the way back with my friends, we stopped at the Waihi station of the Goldfields Railway.

Rail reached Waihi in 1905, and it was the end of that particular line until 1928. It remained in service until 1979 -- after the Kaimai Tunnel opened. Everything changed.  The Waikino to Waihi portion of the track is all that remains.

Bill told me these were jigger sheds, with short rails leading from them. I did a bit of greyscale tinkering.

Last shot in Waihi for 2011. Baggage carts like these always remind me of peas, pie an' pud, enjoyed with a steaming cuppa as rain softly fell one dark night on a railway enthusiasts' excursion at Helensville station on the way home from Whangarei, when a baggage cart was just about the only available seat, and it was a heck of a good seat at that.


  1. What great building restorations. Better than new.

  2. I remember sitting on one of these at Waiouru, shuddering in the Central North Island midnight cold while waiting an hour for an army transport to uplift us.
    I far prefer the warmer memory of a railway pie at Taihape (yes, I survived it!).

  3. I can understand that. Waiouru at midnight's certainly a heck of a place to be parking the backside on a baggage cart! Haven't had a true railway pie ... yet ...

  4. The line closed on September 12 1978 ( the same day as the kaimai Tunnel opened)and the Goldfields Steam Train Society took over the 6.75km ection of track from Waihi to Waikino on November 9 1980. The Waihi railway complex is now the most complete original in New Zealand and is owned by the community-based incorporated society-the Goldfields Railway Inc.