Sorry, but due to budget constraints the light at the end of the tunnel has been switched off indefinitely...
Its winter! 

As the work load in our little corner of the railway world is seasonal, when winter comes along we generally dont have much to do. Our rostered work shrinks dramatically and generally if its not nightshift running 529 down to Bunnythorpe to get 520, its either an early start taking 520 from Whareroa to New Plymouth and then running 52 shunt, or its an afternoon shift running 528 to NP and bringing 529 back....

I must admit the inner foamer in me has all but dissapeared. I dont know if its just the slow sleepy winter pace or my growing displeasure with my employers ravenous and savage cost cutting frugality and overall negative outlook whilst being strangled from above by extremely short sighted politicians. Its hard to remain positive when they are making gangers redundant, cancelling contracts and retrenching all areas. Apparently we will be dumped into an SOE next year that will no doubt be offloaded by the Nats in an effort to "recover the cost burden bought about by the previous government."


Train wins!
As some of you may know, I popped my level crossing cherry last month in dramatic fashion. I guess it was always going to happen, and even though the possibility of it happening has always sat in the back of mind, I was in no way prepared for it in any way..... one moment its buisness as usual and then BOOM there is a 4wd flying through the air in front of my train! 
I wont linger on it, or go into the details here, as I have moved on, the whole situation at the time and days following chalked up to "character building" and being one of life's more intense experiences. 
And now to the foaming.....

As I alluded before, its winter, there is not a great deal to report, and I spend most of time running trains in the dark, all of which lessens the chances of taking train photos. That said, there are a few recent snaps below.
4438 at dawn, New Plymouth.
526 pulling in on the loop at Stratford.
Hutt fresh 7036 at Whareroa.
And again at Stratford.
What happened to "The Archive" I hear you say? Well.... I just dont have the enthusiasm for it, and even though its winter, dare I say it the weather has not been too bad and I have been busy with the family doing other things. 

Things will start picking up again soon and perhaps getting back into the swing of things will lift spirits and gain a few more photos....

Until next time..

William R
7/5/2012 01:27:38 pm

Well, good to see steel ribbons hasn't bitten the dust just yet. Still a good read. And i see you've disappeared off the book of faces again drew?

Duncan M
7/7/2012 05:09:04 pm

Must agree with William. Stoked to see that the blog hasn't died. The insight you provide is much appreciated. Cheers!

7/9/2012 02:32:06 pm

Hi Andrew,

same as Duncan and William - so good to see another post :-)

Sorry to hear you popped your LX cherry the other day. I always have thoughts for the LEs whenever that happens.

Again excellent pics. Love the dawn sky behind 4388. Only ever seen that colour though a polarising filter in broad daylight! Beautiful. And doesn't 7306 look like a brand new model loco straight out of the box. It really pops.

And don't get me started on $#@$# privatisation. Good on you for speaking out.

cheers and keep it all coming!

7/9/2012 05:24:14 pm

Im with the other posters. Good to see another post AH. We appreciate your insight on the goings on

Colin Boyd
7/10/2012 09:51:19 pm

Hi Andrew.
I agree with the others ,keep up the good work and photo's/stories.
This cost cutting does nothing for moral in a work place and unfortunately is out of our control.

Cheers Colin.


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