Last week followed the Navarre line from Ben Nevis. We didn't actually find the ROW until we asked a couple of cockies in Landsborough, their reply "it used t go through Landsborough West, bout 5 k's down the road". They also told us how to find it in Navarre. We then headed North West until we found ourselves driving along the old ROW near Tulkara. Very few remains are in evidence, just the odd earth ramp and a wooden raod bridge on the road that followed in same reservation etc.
At Navarre the remains of the loco servicing trestles exist, along with original pit of a cart weighbridge on the western side of the yard. A high level water tank has been constructed and remains of a grain dump are in evidence. A new weighbridge has been built and looks to be still in use, it uses some plates from the deck of the original as a platform to stand on. A sign mentioned a silo but none are now located there. I also found foundations of the old buildings, a goods loading ramp and some rusting ship's ballast tanks, perhaps a railway water supply at some time?
Now a few questions:
Has anyone travelled this line by rail?
Were trains worked from Ararat, Marayborough or did they just work from Ben Nevis?
Does anyone have the diagrams for this yard or the others on the line (inc. Ben Nevis) or do they appear in some readily available publication? Or perhaps some pictures? I would be most greatful to receive some by reply or PM.
Happy railway digging!
hi the navarre line was worked from ararat a driver that i work with frequently knows a bit about the history of this line along with the workings.
i am rostered with him next week and will dig a bit of info out of him and post here.
I also traced this line back in May. Where abouts in Navarre did you find the remains of the former terminus? I found the old GEB area and rail formation nearby but not much else.
The most interesting thing I found was when driving along teh Ararat - Avoca road, driving over where the Navarre line would have crossed, I could have sworn that I felt rails underneath the surface of the road!
I recall seeing a goods train coming from Navarre and stopped at the signal before it came across the Avoca-Ararat Road(Now Pyrenees Highway)into Ben Nevis junction.It probably was headed by a D class loco,and ran weekly to Navarre.I think the time period would be around1948,and the roads were not bitumanised,and my father would drive his old car to Ararat.Also I had an aunty that lived at Crowlands,which was a station on the line and she would tell me about that line.Originally when it was built it was intended to link with the Mildura line at St Arnaud,and there were daily mixed passenger and goods from Ararat.
There's the remains of a platform opposite the old pub at Crowlands. About 10 years ago (about 1990) there was a large platform and some metal structures at Joel (or Joel South) but the platform was largly dug away and used for road fill. I dont know what's left there now. locals say the line was mostly used to cart timber and didnt last once the timber ran out.