Jan-Jun 2019

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It can be hard to predict who’ll turn up for an EZY walk these days. As 19 walkers congregated on Platform 23 at Central to catch the 8:33am Campbelltown train, there was a heady mix of walking talent from Plus walkers down to one of our Legendary Social Walkers (Hello Jean…) – and then there was another Legend: Ray (welcome back – good to see you – it’s been quite a while!).

  2019 04 26 EZY Lillian central station IMG 6457  2019 04 26 EZY DonWo its a new train  2019 04 26 EZY DonWo campbelltown stn                     Meeting joyously at Central                            Gladys' reminder that she has bought some new trains                   Waiting to change trains at Campbelltown

  2019 04 26 EZY Ray railmotor IMG 2281    2019 04 26 EZY DonWo leader helping his folowers    2019 04 26 EZY Lillian picton stn IMG 6471                                                      This one was not brand new!                                                   Leader helping his flock to leave Picton Station                          The first climb - out of Picton Station

On a warm sunny day (hardly felt like 2 months into Autumn) we set out from Picton Station (completed in 1863 to a Georgian style design attributed to John Whitton) and had morning tea on the banks of Stonequarry Creek – almost in the shadow of the historic railway viaduct over the creek (commenced in 1862, it is 84m long and with five arches 24m above Stonequarry Creek it is the oldest existing stone archway railway bridge over water in NSW). HVB readers, having already detected that Don Browne was one of the walk’s leaders, will by now have divined that there was always going to be a bit of railway history in the mix for this walk – and so there was.

  2019 04 26 EZY Ray viaduct rail lines IMG 2280  2019 04 26 EZY Ray steam train on viaduct Scan 2019 4 27 06.38.20                                             Viaduct marked by stone walls either side of tracks             Near-new viaduct with steam train of the times (and historic details provided by Ray).

  2019 04 26 EZY DonWo hvb viewing the viaduct  2019 04 26 EZY DonWo stone arches need a keystone  2019 04 26 EZY Lindy sunny side of viaduct IMG 20190426 WA0001                                                                           Viewing the viaduct                                                                                The keystone                                                                   The sunny side

  2019 04 26 EZY Lillian morn tea IMG 6530  2019 04 26 EZY DonWo morn tea by the stonequarry creek  2019 04 26 EZY DonWo two hvb stalwarts and red socks not seen for a while                                   Morning tea by Stonequarry Creek                                                                                                                 Two stalwarts, and those red socks not seen for many moons

Further Picton highlights included the Toll House (1867) – one of the first examples of career flexibility in NSW Government service – the toll collector (on the Great South Road – later the Hume Highway) also doubled as the gatekeeper for the railway level crossing at this point. The Redbank Range railway tunnel followed (made redundant in 1919 when the railway line was relocated) and then it was into Picton proper, past the George IV Inn (1839), Stonequarry Creek road bridge (1899), St. Marks Church of England (1857) and then on to Picton Botanical Gardens – small, but beautifully maintained – for lunch.

   2019 04 26 EZY Lillian toll houseIMG 6549  2019 04 26 EZY Lillian picton stn from footbridge IMG 6539  2019 04 26 EZY DonWo its a scenic village                                             The Tollhouse                                             Distant view of Picton Station                                    A very scenic village!

                                  2019 04 26 EZY Ray redbank tunnel IMG 2270    2019 04 26 EZY DonWo light at the end of the tunnel                                                                                                               Abandoned Redbank Tunnel - entrance............                                 and on the inside

                    2019 04 26 EZY DonWo old hume hwy picton town    2019 04 26 EZY DonWo Stonequarry Creek definitely not flooded                                                                                 Stonequarry Creek Bridge, Hume Hwy, Picton cbd                                        View of the Creek from Bridge - no floods this month!

                    2019 04 26 EZY DonWo hvbmembers consider their future     2019 04 26 EZY Ray elves and fairies IMG 2278                                                                                                  HVB walkers contemplating their future                                                         Ray thought this sign said something about the town

                    2019 04 26 EZY DonWo lunch 1     2019 04 26 EZY DonWo lunch 2                                                                                                                                                                   Lunch in the Botanic Gardens

                     2019 04 26 EZY Lillian botanic gardens folly IMG 6582   2019 04 26 EZY DonWo bee shelter    2019 04 26 EZY DonWo bee notice                                                                                  Botanic Gardens Folly                                                                     Native Bee shelter   

A short stroll back through the gardens after lunch took us back into town past the Picton Court House (1864), the former Post Office (1892), a former bank building (1855 –a fine example of Victorian architecture – complete with restored coach house and barn), and on to Picton Town Square and the coffee shop de jour – which turned out to be rather busy for a Friday lunchtime – but they coped admirably with a sudden influx of 19 customers. Well, almost coped, I think the owner probably reached for the cooking sherry immediately upon our departure to ease the stress of our visit.

    2019 04 26 EZY DonWo Picton PO   2019 04 26 EZY Lillian stables IMG 6588   2019 04 26 EZY DonWo coffee in picton town square                                                         Old Post Office and Bank buildings                                      Converted stables                                    Coffee in the Town Square

 2019 04 26 EZY Lillian feather and fur factory   2019 04 26 EZY DonWo Picton signal box                                       This building was the Feather and Fur factory                                                                          Restored Picton Signal Box

And so, onto the leisurely final leg of the walk which took us back to the station to await the 2:54 pm train home. And speaking of trains, our LLLs (Lydia and Lyndy Ladies) almost managed to recruit a new member to Hill View as we travelled the rail network. Not content with chatting up Andrew on the trip down in the morning, they continued the chat as Andrew joined us for the return trip to Macarthur – only for Andrew to join us on the train yet again at Campbelltown… by which time he was greeted rowdily (not a quiet carriage) by the group like a long lost friend!

LEADERS:             John G & Don B

WALKERS:           Ruth, Ros, Ray, Aileen, Sue & Andy, Lilian, Lyndy, Jean McD, Dawn, Lydia, Robyn & Rex, Bill S, Rosemary and Kevin, Don Wo.

PHOTOS:              Lyndy L (11); Ray (4,7,8,18,23,); Lilian (6,12,15,16,26,30,32); Don Wo (1,2,3,5,9,10,13,14,17,19,20,21,22,24,25,27,28,29,31,33)

 

 

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