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Chasing the Maryvale Paper Train

Well, not really chasing, more like just being in the right place at the right time. It turns out they've flipped the schedule on this and the UP service now runs through to the CBD at around 2pm daily.

This is nothing short of perfectly timed. The steel runs down around 3 hours earlier... it's therefore good to go and stretch the legs when these services come through the area.

Malvern Station

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Armadale Station

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Toorak Station

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Hawksburn Station

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Just past Hawksburn

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South Yarra Station

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Just after South Yarra Station

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The curve after South Yarra, just before Richmond...

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Richmond Station

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Nice and colourful... no post processing on any pics!

8Apr/150

West of Melbourne – March 2015

It was Andrew's turn to come to Melbourne, so we went for a drive west to see if there was anything on the rails. Unfortunately, Sundays are usually the quietest out there. It was also overcast in the morning...

Manor Loop

The Regional Rail Link connects back to the main line here after branching off at Sunshine back towards Melbourne. It all looks very complete and very clean. There wasn't much going on and we only had the signals to tell us if anything was approaching. A Geelong-bound V/Locity came through... not overly-exciting.

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As we were about to leave, we were presented with a V/Lo on the flyover. Serious luck.

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Geelong

After our first bout of luck, we were itching for a second. A grain consist was waiting in the loop near North Shore.... pretty standard... but then IEV100 came through. This is a DMU rail inspection vehicle. ...If only the weather would pick up.

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Between Cressy and Wingeel

The decision was made to drive further west in hope of sun and intermodals. Fortunately, we were met with both.

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Andrew had wanted to check out the SCT sidings at Lavertion... but there was a light-engine movement visible on the radar and we decided to stay put and hope for the sun to hang around. Everything lined up and we were rewarded with a 4-locomotive lash-up of a BL, an 81 and 2 Gs.

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Gheringhap Loop

There was a steel train coming from the east, so we chose to catch it at Gheringhap Loop instead of waiting for it at Inverleigh where the sun would be in the wrong spot.

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Another 81... I've never seen so many (even if they're attached dead) on the west line.

Just east of Bannockburn?

I haven't really checked this location out before. I initially intended to camp at the crossing to the west right near Bannockburn station. But the sun indicated that we should be as east as possible. It paid off well... I tried to be artistic and get shots of the light-engines from below... but Andrew's shots from above were much better.

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Between Lara and Little River

One final spot... one final intermodal and a V/Locity. In the end it turned out to be a really rewarding day.

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21Jan/150

Regional Rail Link

The Regional Rail Link is the Victorian governments answer to traffic congestion between Footscray and Werribee. The goal is to build a new line to Geelong via the north of the area and bypass it entirely. Of course, this will just move the regional trains, the sparks will still service the bypassed area.

On the capture below, you'll see a V/Locity testing the tracks at full speed. This happened this morning. It's interesting to see that there are data points missing around Deer Park.

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RRL Return

The same consist then returned via the loop. A fellow fan mentions that this was to keep the drivers memories of the route fresh and to keep the rust off the rails.

The entire section is expected to be in operation in April this year.