Saturday, April 23, 2011

1930's Era Narrow Gauge Railway Discovered On The Central Coast

Who would have thought the New South Wales Central Coast region would still have an operating narrow gauge railway that dates back to the 1930's?

The term railway is probably stretching the boundaries of what this actually is, although by definition it fits the criteria, that of transporting passengers, or goods as it were by rail, which it certainly does.

So, how did I discover this "railway" and where is it? The Thursday having just past happened to be mine and my wife's tenth wedding anniversary, and as a surprise my wife booked a short getaway to a place called Kim's Beach Hideaway ( ) which is just south of the Entrance on the NSW Central Coast. As an aside I could not recommend this place any higher for anyone wanting a brief escape from the rat race, but I digress.

Whilst my wife was reading some literature the place which dates back to 1886, the following paragraph caught her attention and she read it out aloud to me, "The railway line for guest luggage has been in use since the 1930's, initially to transport coal that was used for the hot-water boilers and fuel for the kitchen"Arga" stoves".

Of course I had visions of tiny steam powered engines pulling short rakes of flat wagons or tiny hoppers and the like, but the reality was somewhat more basic, although none the less interesting.

After actually locating the track, it raveled itself to be an approximately 18" gauge line, which began at the lower southern entrance, and meandered behind the beach front huts for about seventy or eighty metres before ending under the restaurant which I guess is still located where the original boilers would have been for the kitchen.

As you can see by the image of the rails they are somewhat rusty and decayed, no doubt due to the close proximity to the beach and the close to eighty years of use, but none the less still allowed the lone cart I saw pulling luggage and kitchen supplies to glide along, making the job of transportation a might easier than by using man power alone.

Apart form that, I don't have a great deal to write about modelling wise, although with a week off work I'm hoping to get stuck into a few things so hopefully I'll have something of interest to blog about soon.