Heritage Express - Southern Aurora to South Australia, 8th - 15th August 2013

 
  MC3801 Train Controller

Hi Everyone,

From 8th - 15th August 2013, Heritage Express will be operating a Southern Aurora tour to South Australia and the Flinders Ranges, to mark the 40th anniversary of the Pichi Richi Railway Preservation Society.

Journey Highlights:

Southern Aurora private sleeping compartments
'Diner in the Diner' and comfortable Lounge & Bar Carriages
Eight Day/Eight night rail cruise, exploring NSW and South Australia
Menindee Lakes Dinner
The amazingly stunning Flinders Ranges
Stay at the Wilpena Pound Resort in the Flinders Ranges National Park
Sunset Drinks over the Flinders
40th anniversary celebrations of the Pichi Richi Railway and the historic town of Quorn
Spencer Gulf, Port Augusta and the Australian Arid Botanic Gardens

Itinerary

:

Day 1 - An early evening departure, with drinks in the lounge car followed by ‘dinner in the diner’ — we’ll begin as Southern Aurora did 51 years ago.
Travel south through the Southern Highlands to Goulburn, Yass Junction and to Cootamundra.
After dinner in the Restaurant Cars, relax with friends and fellow travellers with a nightcap in the Lounge-&-Bar Car before retiring to your sleeping compartment that has been made ready for your night’s sleep.
Overnight aboard Southern Aurora.

Day 2 - Stretch your legs in the morning in Parkes and enjoy breakfast and luncheon aboard as we head west through Condobolin towards Ivanhoe and Menindee.
In the mid-afternoon we arrive in Menindee and alight for an afternoon at the Menindee Lakes, before sunset on the shores of Copi Hollow, followed by dinner at the Menindee Lakes Rowing Club.
After dinner rejoin the Southern Aurora and retire to bed as the train travels west through Broken Hill – and then through Cockburn, Mannahill, Peterborough, Jamestown and Crystal Brook to Port Augusta on Spencer Gulf.
Overnight aboard Southern Aurora.

Day 3 - Join in the celebrations of the Pichi Richi Preservation Society as they mark the 40th Anniversary of the heritage railway from Port Augusta, through the Pichi Richi Pass, to Quorn.
Opened in 1879, the railway was part of the first stage of the Great Northern Railway that was intended to link Port Augusta with Darwin.
The Ghan name originated in Quorn in 1923 when the Great Northern Express was dubbed The Afghan Express by railwaymen. In 1929 this line reached Alice Springs. The East-West Transcontinental railway across the Nullarbor Plain was completed in 1917, and the Pichi Richi Railway became part of the East-West route for the next 20 years.
Quorn was a vital railway junction, especially during World War II when military, coal and other traffic placed sizeable demands on the railway. Washaways in the north and the incapacity of the railway to handle expanding traffic saw a new standard-gauge railway constructed from Stirling North to Brachina, and the Pichi Richi Railway was closed to regular traffic in 1957.
We ride the Pichi Railway, and recreate travel as it was 100 years ago. In the late afternoon we’ll enjoy sunset drinks and retire to our motel in Port Augusta.

Day 4 - After breakfast we head north by coach for the two-hour journey to Wilpena Pound.
For years the Flinders Ranges have drawn visitors from far and wide. The appeal is the unique beauty of this landscape with its indigenous history, ancient geological formations, rich colours and textures, open spaces, clear air and abundant wildlife.
The Flinders Ranges are home to nearly half of South Australia’s 3100 plant species, more than 120 bird, 86 reptile and 20 mammal species. The vibrant colours of the 800 million-year-old quartzite and limestone outcrop that is the Flinders, are truly spectacular.
At the heart of all this is Wilpena Pound, a natural amphitheatre 17km long and 7km wide, shaped by the weathering and uplifting of land over time. We will enjoy evening drinks with the sunset casting light over the colours and shapes of this amazing landscape.
Overnight Wilpena Pound, Flinders Ranges.

Day 5 - Enjoy a full day exploring the Flinders Ranges — you have the opportunity to walk the 2.6km into Wilpena Pound itself, as well as exploring it aboard our coaches.
Specialist 4WD tours and scenic flights over Lake Eyre (both optional extras) are also possible.
Overnight Wilpena Pound, Flinders Ranges.

Day 6 - In the late morning, we return via Quorn to Port Augusta and inspect the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden.
The Garden is home to thousands of highly-evolved plant communities that are specially adapted to thrive in an environment where temperatures are extreme and drought can last for decades. The Garden was established in 1993 to research, conserve and promote Australia’s arid zone flora.
On the shores of Upper Spencer Gulf, with spectacular views to the ancient Flinders Ranges, the Garden showcases a diverse collection of arid zone habitats.
We visit the Wadlata Outback Centre — a multi-award-winning journey through the evolution of the Flinders Ranges and the Outback of South Australia.
We’ll visit the Foreshore Park on the Gulf and see the Redcliffs over Spencer Gulf. Then rejoin Southern Aurora for Dinner-in-the-Diner as we head east towards Broken Hill.
Overnight aboard Southern Aurora.

Day 7 - A rare opportunity to travel in comfort across the vast outback tracts of western NSW, from Broken Hill to Parkes in daylight.
Enjoy breakfast as we head around the Menindee Lakes system, and through Ivanhoe, Condobolin and towards Parkes.
In the mid-afternoon we visit Parkes Observatory, which hosts the 64-metre Parkes radio telescope — one of the telescopes comprising CSIRO’s Australia Telescope National Facility. An icon of Australian science, the Parkes radio telescope has been in operation since 1961 and continues to be at the forefront of astronomical discovery. Astronomers from across Australia and around the world utilise the Parkes radio telescope to undertake world-class astronomical science. Affectionately known as ’the Dish’, we inspect the facility before returning to Southern Aurora for our final dinner aboard, as we head towards Narromine and Dubbo.
Overnight aboard Southern Aurora.

Day 8 - Wake as we head east through Tarana and Lithgow, across the spectacular Blue Mountains to Sydney.
Enjoy breakfast in the Restaurant Cars as we cross the Great Dividing Range and recall this year as the 200th Anniversary of the crossing of the Blue Mountains by Blaxland, Lawson and Wentworth, who camped at Mt Victoria on 28th May, 1813.
Farewell friends old and new as we arrive in Sydney in the late morning. The end of our spectacular rail cruise to the Flinders Ranges aboard Southern Aurora. A great seven-day, seven-night journey aboard the famous Southern Aurora — book now to secure your place.

http://www.heritageexpress.com.au/pages/tours-events/2013-08-001-EOAT.htm

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  Barrington Womble Photo Nazi

Location: Banned
How about a link to the source of your information as well?
  DavidJDowd Station Master

Location: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Do we have a consist list yet?
I wonder if they will take all 3 Lounge cars like they have previously.
  Spiritman Train Controller

Location: Camden, NSW
How about a link to the source of your information as well?
Barrington Womble
Google it?
  Barrington Womble Photo Nazi

Location: Banned
Google it?
Spiritman
*Sigh*

Generally if you copy information from another source, be it a newspaper; railway tour brochure, or whatever, you are expected to post a link to the source. What's the point of copying, and pasting it here otherwise?
  Galron Chief Commissioner
  pictonyardcontrol Beginner

Location: Tahmoor, New South Wales
Hi All,

The consist for this tour will be :

PHA,LAN,NAM,NAM,LAN,ABS,RMS,RMS,BCS,BCS,FAM,NAM,NAM and 2 Mainline Diesels.
  simont141 Chief Commissioner

Location: Adelaide
And for the side trip to Pichi Richi, consist will be NM25 and W934 or W22 double heading, plus combined SAR and CR consists (10 carriages).
  DavidJDowd Station Master

Location: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Does each PHA have multiple generators? When the train was up north they had 2 PH's on the train.
The reason for my question is of one generator fails for some reason is there a secondary backup?
  Fireman Dave Chief Commissioner

Location: Shh, I'm hiding
The PHAs have 3 Detroit Diesel gensets. There's going to be a surprise loco on the train too.
  Raichase Captain Rant!

Location: Sydney, NSW
The PHAs have 3 Detroit Diesel gensets. There's going to be a surprise loco on the train too.
Fireman Dave
3801?

Laughing
  Salty21 Junior Train Controller

Location: Canberra
3801?

Laughing
Raichase
You wish!Shocked
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Hi Everyone,

From 8th - 15th August 2013, Heritage Express will be operating a Southern Aurora tour to South Australia and the Flinders Ranges, to mark the 40th anniversary of the Pichi Richi Railway Preservation Society.

Journey Highlights:

Southern Aurora private sleeping compartments
Should that be 'Dinner in the Diner' and comfortable Lounge & Bar Carriages
Eight Day/Eight night rail cruise, exploring NSW and South Australia .....
MC3801
  Raichase Captain Rant!

Location: Sydney, NSW
Since it's already been sighted on the mainline, I assume it's safe to let the cat out of the bag - train will be hauled by CF4409 and 4520.
  MC3801 Train Controller

When the Southern Aurora arrives at Port Augusta, which locomotive from the Pichi Richi Railway will be hauling the train from Port Augusta to Quorn?
  lsrailfan Chief Commissioner

Location: Somewhere you're not
Afternoon all, Today I went in and Photographed this Train at Central,

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32678796@N05/9461687243/in/photostream/- CF4409 Stands at the Buffer Stops at Central, I must admit, I got quite a Surprise to see a CF on the Train, Also in shot is Alco 4520

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32678796@N05/9461691937/in/photostream/- Veteran Alco 4520, and CF4490 Wait to run-around their Consist at Central,

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32678796@N05/9464468508/in/photostream/- Having backed onto their Train, CF4490 and 4520 Await their Departure Slot of 18:39pm from Central Station

Kind Regards
  Pressman Spirit of the Vine

Location: Wherever the Tin Chook or Qantas takes me
When the Southern Aurora arrives at Port Augusta, which locomotive from the Pichi Richi Railway will be hauling the train from Port Augusta to Quorn?
"MC3801"


This was posted by simont141 further up the page
And for the side trip to Pichi Richi, consist will be NM25 and W934 or W22 double heading, plus combined SAR and CR consists (10 carriages).
"simont141"

The Southern Aurora consist CAN NOT go to Quorn as the PRR rails are Narrow Gauge.
  MC3801 Train Controller

Afternoon all, Today I went in and Photographed this Train at Central,

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32678796@N05/9461687243/in/photostream/- CF4409 Stands at the Buffer Stops at Central, I must admit, I got quite a Surprise to see a CF on the Train, Also in shot is Alco 4520

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32678796@N05/9461691937/in/photostream/- Veteran Alco 4520, and CF4490 Wait to run-around their Consist at Central,

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32678796@N05/9464468508/in/photostream/- Having backed onto their Train, CF4490 and 4520 Await their Departure Slot of 18:39pm from Central Station

Kind Regards
lsrailfan
Nice photos. Interesting to see CF4409 hauling the Southern Aurora with 4520.
  dthead Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
This was posted by simont141 further up the page

The Southern Aurora consist CAN NOT go to Quorn as the PRR rails are Narrow Gauge.
Pressman
But is Simon refering to any narrow gauge CR rollingstock PRR have in operation ?

Regards,
David Head
  MC3801 Train Controller

The train is heading to Port Augusta today, then it's the Pichi Richi Railway 40th Anniversary Celebrations the next day.
  Termite Chief Commissioner

Location: NSW
Photo of it here passing through Yarrabandai, west of Parkes.

http//www.flickr.com/photos/tim_gray/9472552622/

Tim
  nswtrains Chief Commissioner

Photo of it here passing through Yarrabandai, west of Parkes.

http//www.flickr.com/photos/tim_gray/9472552622/

Tim
Termite
STN came out this week for its run from the end of the CRN to Sydney Terminal and then back to Macarthur and thence as per ARTC network to Thirlmere.
  exarmidale Train Controller

Just pulling out of siding at Peterbourgh SA now to go to Port Augusta to pick up our passengers.
  greasyrhys Chief Commissioner

Location: MacDonald Park, SA
It's unfortunate that enthusiast specials like these never run to Adelaide (APT) anymore, probably due to insurance or a high cost of accessing the Parklands Terminal?
  simont141 Chief Commissioner

Location: Adelaide
Photo below from a photostop on the Pichi Richi side trip, which was also the PRRPS Members' train to celebrate the 40th anniversary of our formation. Plenty more photos and videos are surfacing at the moment too.

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