As mentioned in the previous blog post, the July session on the Border District brought about some interesting occurrences, with the most significant located at or around the smallest station on the layout, Border Junction. The above images speaks a little to one of these – the “Flinders Street Station” like traffic levels experienced through “the Junction” at one point! Please ignore the foreground and right hand side of the picture – which always looks busy as it is the area which contains the “through staging” yards of Kybybolite (SAR/West) and Edenhope (VR/East).
Our real interest above is to the left hand side and then centre(ish) of the image – with SAR Train Number 148 Goods loading and unloading “take outs” at the platform (though it appears the DWf performing the role of “take out” van might not have been marshalled inside the Guard’s Brake, as required …). Normal enough you say? Well then look further down the line behind TN 148 … and you might just be able to make out an 830 Alco at the head of SAR Train Number 134 Extra Empty Super, holding at the outer home. You want more? Next to SAR TN 134 and again in the distance, but now on the VR main line, VR Train Number P4 Loaded Grain can be seen, ex-Tatiara Downs and having just passed through Border Junction. And for even more … also present but out of image (further to the left) is VR Train Number 4 Quarry Goods, loading JQF hoppers at the facility at Southern Aggregates.
For those good at maths … yes, that is four trains in or around Border Junction at the one time – easily a record. Add to this the fact that when the above picture was taken, the fifth operator/train was shunting Nankiva (just to the right of the image – around the curve VR TN P6 is heading) and so placing all five operators in the same operating “pit” at the same time. This is not necessarily unusual, but something which normally happens on the other side of the layout! Perhaps this was all part of a nefarious scheme to keep the other operating pit clear and free for myself? Hmmm … regardless, the ensuing “carnage” made for some fun moments – thanks to Brendan for capturing the image!