|A cutting on the original timber line|
south of Sebbes Road.
Lately, as a totally unrelated project, I have been tinkering with Open Street Map which is like the Wikipedia of online maps, as users can enter roads, tracks, paths, etc. to produce a community-generated map free of any commercial restrictions. Combining the two interests, I ended up tracing the routes of the old railways near Margaret River from a variety of sources and entering them on the Open Street Map so they are available for viewing and can easily be located with respect to present day roads and other features.
Here is a screenshot of Open Street Map from an iPhone* showing the two, almost parallel, railway alignments south of Forrest Grove Rd, (at the top of the map). Sebbes Rd is the next, east-west, road to the south.
The old railways are indicated by grey, dotted lines, and are easily discernible by their gently curving alignment compared to most roads and tracks. The railway alignment closer to Bussell Hwy (blue) is the original timber line. The newer WAGR alignment is about midway between Bussell Hwy and Caves Road (pink) in this area.
The brown dashed lines lines on the map are other tracks, such as walking tracks or rough dirt roads.
The full Open Street Map for the area can be viewed on a computer at http://www.openstreetmap.org/?lat=-34.106&lon=115.1008&zoom=14&layers=M
If you follow the railway further south on the map, I have drawn the route in all the way to Augusta. It seems the jetty at Augusta which was used for loading timber onto ships was located just south of the town beyond the mouth of the Blackwood River. Interestingly, the Augusta airstrip is built along the former railway alignment, just west of the town. This was probably the site of Augusta station and yard.
North of Witchcliffe, there are also two railway alignments. The eastern one, which crosses Bussell Hwy and becomes Darch Road, was the original timber line. The later WAGR line stayed to the west of Bussell Hwy. Parts of both routes are now cycling/walking trails nearer to Margaret River, as is the former WAGR line north to Cowaramup.
|Part of Darch Road - originally a|
timber line, now a walk/cycle trail.
|Part of the former WAGR line about 5 km south of|
Margaret River, also a walk/cycle trail.
|A more open stretch of the former|
WAGR line in the same area.
Obligatory model photo!
A G class hauling a rake of log trucks on the
timber line to Yelverton sawmill.