Day 9 – at Peterborough S.A.

Lovely scenery just out of Jamestown

Another very cold night. Periods of rain with very strong winds. At least we have both proved our vans do not leak! I received a phone call at 8.00am to say the dentist in Port Pirie would be able to see me at 4.15 this afternoon, so we planned our day around this. This morning Ian and Bruce and Linda drove to a local steam-train museum, while I stayed back at the park and just rested. They thoroughly enjoyed the museum. It was set up in a huge triple gauge railway repair shop and has the only operational three gauge turntable in the world. It is large enough to fit a steam train, or a large carriage on it. They also had an hydraulic operated overhead crane which allowed them to change the bogies on the carriages to fit the different gauges. Railway was huge here many years ago and did not decline until the early 80’s. In fact most towns have some historical record of the value the railway was in early days. This is right up Bruce’s alley as he is such a train ‘buff’. Surprisingly all the trains and carriages on display are all accessible to the public and it is a good opportunity to see what it would be like to drive them or ride in them. Ian was impressed with a 1939 Morris car that was adapted to run only on the rails for the use of the Inspector or the Pay Master to travel to the various working gangs — when he needed to do a return trip there was a hydraulic system attached to a turntable underneath the middle of car which allowed the car to then be turned by hand to face the opposite direction. It was capable of speeds up to 50 mph and of course no steering wheel was required.

After lunch Bruce and Linda drove to a small town called Terowie – it is town which seems to have been lost in time. When railway was extended to Peterborough, Terowie went from a thriving town to a virtual ghost town. It is amazing just how the town seems to be frozen in time. It is a popular venue for photographers, historians etc. Well worth the visit. Ian and I saw it in 2002 so we did not mind missing out on the trip there owing to my visit to the dentist. If anyone is interested it is worth looking up on google, and of course, making the trip to see the town.

We travelled the 108 kms to Port Pirie via Jamestown and Caltowie. The scenery was just beautiful. Such a change from the past few days of salt bush and bare paddocks. The crops were just coming up and the hills in the background were lovely. South Australia is a very pretty State. We arrived early in Port Pirie so walked around the town when I received a phone call to say I could go to the dentist earlier owing to a cancellation. So in I went. As I suspected, the tooth needed to be extracted – it had broken. So, $286 later I was out of the surgery. It has taken me until now (nearly 8pm) to stem the blood though. Hopefully it will settle down before I go to bed. Of course it is a little tender where the 3 needles went in, but I am grateful this all happened here near larger towns, than say Coober Pedy even though it required a 216km round trip.

The Indian Pacific passes through Peterborough twice a week on its way from Sydney

We plan to have an early start tomorrow so we can make the Pichi Richi railway trip. More about it tomorrow.

View at back of Van Park at Peterborough

Thanks to all who have made comments. Nice to know the blog is being read.

Love to all, Janese

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