Monday, 27 January 2014

glasshouse mountains

the day i visited glasshouse mountains station began like so many others; at dinmore. the decision to visit glasshouse mountains was not a deliberate one i made that morning when traveling from dinmore to central. after the customary cup of tea at central with karen, i bid her farewell for the day and thought i might catch a train for fun before heading home. when i got to the platforms at central, platforms 1, 2, 3 and 4 were all out of action for the morning and all trains heading south were running through platform 5, and all northbound through platform 6. while this doesnt happen all that often, i have seen it happen a few times before, simply because platform 5 is the one we use for the ipswich line. we can tell immediately as we head down the steps to the platforms because of the vastly increased number of commuters waiting on our platform. this particular day was no different.

while i was waiting on platform 5 at central, i could have had my choice of any train heading in any direction: all i would need to do was cross the platform to platform 6 for a northbound train. i watched the screens and saw that a gold coast train was due about 6 minutes before a nambour train. i had a decision to make: platform 5 to go south on the gold coast line to varsity lakes for the first time, or north to somewhere north of caboolture for the first time. the gold coast train arrived right in front of me on platform 5, and i seriously considered it for a good while (it was a train equipped with wifi, which made it even more enticing, and all the more difficult to turn down). in the end i decided against the gold coast, i will save that one for another day; after all i have caught gold coast trains many times to park road and once to coopers plains. in the end, i decided that a nambour train was just too good an opportunity to pass up, and when it arrived on platform 6, it too was a wifi enabled train. i made my decision and jumped aboard the nambour train and settled in for the ride, still not entirely sure which station i would choose. this is half the fun of writing my blog, i can jump on any train heading in any direction and disembark at whichever random station i so choose. on this particular day, i chose the glasshouse mountains station.

the nambour train stopped at the city stations as far as northgate, before running express to petrie. from petrie the train then ran express to caboolture. it seemed we were in caboolture in no time. i had been to the caboolture station once before by train during the last set of university holidays before i started my blog. in 2013 for new years eve we went to the famous australia zoo by car and stayed in a small motel near the caboolture station. it was a total fluke i swear that the caboolture line was visible from the motel, and that the station itself was a short walk from our room. (the sad thing about this though, was that i didnt have enough charge in my camera to get many shots of the caboolture station on that particular visit. an omen that photos of train stations should only be taken when i have caught the train to them!)

the glasshouse mountains station is on the sunshine coast line, which is an extension of the caboolture line, however it doesnt stop at all stations like the caboolture, and also doesnt run quite as frequently. glasshouse mountains is the third station from caboolture, located between beerburrum and beerwah. the beerburrum station is the next station from glasshouse mountains heading inbound towards caboolture, and beerwah is the next station from glasshouse mountains heading outbound towards nambour. the glasshouse mountains were so named by captain cook in the 1700s.

as the nambour train headed north from caboolture, i was officially traveling the farthermost north i had ever been on a train. when we had visited caboolture before heading to the zoo, i did a little walk to the caboolture station to get a few photos before my camera ran out. as i stood on the northern end of the platform looking north along the line, i was standing at the most northern point i had been on a train line. that point was eclipsed in one foul swoop as the nambour train sped away from caboolture on its way to the next stop 7 minutes along the line: elimbah. after elimbah and beerburrum, came my stop of glasshouse mountains, where i disembarked and proceeded to get a few photos of the station. the train ride itself was quite relaxing, lots of forestry to look at, really quite different to the inner city train lines i am used to where there was always so much to look at. this really was a pleasant change to be able to look at nature in all her glory. the glasshouse mountains themselves were visible along the line when looking out to the left while heading north. i had hoped they would be visible from the station, and while one of the mountains was partially visible from the footbridge on platform 1, they are best viewed from the journey itself. 

i can remember when i was little my grandparents would drive us up to caloundra (the back way) along the esk kilcoy road which follows somerset dam, then proceed along the daguilar highway to the beerwah turn off and follow the kilcoy beerwah road which eventually met up with what is now called steve irwin way in honor of the great zookeeper himself (steve was also an essendon fan which i think is worthy of note because i have supported the bombers my whole life). the journey took most of the day as we would stop at every small town for a cup of tea, homemade biscuits baked by nanna, and if we were lucky we would be allowed an iceblock from a small corner store. we always got to play on swings at the little parks in these small roadside towns. we used to love going on this journey with our grandparents, and despite loving the winding road and playing inertia (also known as corners, where we deliberately cannoned into one another in the back seat amongst much laughter) the main highlight was always when we could see the glasshouse mountains themselves. we each had our favorite mountain: mount ngungun and mount coonowrin, or as we called them: the cake and the icy pole. from a distance, ngungun looked so much like a freshly iced cake with a lovely peak of icing, and coonowrin looked like an icy pole iceblock after taking one descent bite out of the top. if you have never been on that drive, i highly recommend it, not just because it is fun and bendy (inertia!!) but because of the beautiful views. the cake and the icy pole are both visible from the train ride as you approach the glasshouse mountains station, and as i looked out the window of the wifi enabled train, i had amazing memories of those fun caloundra trips with my grandparents. 

the view on platform 2 of glasshouse mountains station of the nambour train as i disembarked. this shot is looking north towards beerwah, which is the next station on the sunshine coast line. i had been hoping for an overcast day on the day i finally got to visit the glasshouse mountains station, and the weather didnt disappoint! i had always thought that the mountains themselves looked so much more mysterious and powerful in overcast weather. sadly though, they were not visible from the station. 

the nambour train departs glasshouse mountains bound for beerwah. this is a shot of the nambour train as it is leaving platform 2. look at the sky! how amazingly lucky that it was an overcast day, just like how it was years ago when i was a young child enjoying the drive with my grandparents. 

this is one of the glasshouse mountains station signs on platform 2 of the station. i got a shot of this one because of the artwork around it. the white tiled structure is actually an elevator shaft which links up with the footbridge over the tracks to join the platforms.

this is the same elevator shaft as in the previous shot, but just from a different angle. this time i have included the staircase which leads up to the footbridge. the alphabetical artwork above the elevator is part of the queensland rail positive partnerships project with the glasshouse mountains state school.

looking along platform 2 of glasshouse mountains station back towards beerburrum station. platform 1 is visible on the right of the shot. the station office is in the foreground of the shot on platform 2. there is even a toilet facility (i didnt need to use, but it looked very presentable). if i had had a bit more time at this station i would have tried walking down to the vehicle overpass visible past the end of the platform and getting a shot of the glasshouse mountains station from there. alas, maybe it will have to wait for next time. i am sure i will manage to visit this station again in the future. one thing of note about this shot, is the color of the stones surrounding the tracks. compare them to all the tracks featured in all of the stations i have visited so far. now, geology is not really my thing (i hear the geologists saying that geology rocks, but im afraid i havent had much to do with geology since that rock specimen test in year 9 science that i forgot we were having and hadnt studied for... sorry mrs dalton!) the reason i point this out is because these are clearly a different rock to what is used at all the other stations i have photographed so far. just another reason that glasshouse mountains really does rock!

this is a slightly better shot of the rocks, looking across at platform 1 of glasshouse mountains station from platform 2. this is towards the beerburrum end of the station. beerburrum is towards the left, beerwah to the right.

further along platform 2 of glasshouse mountains station, i got this shot looking across at platform 1. no, it was not intended to capture the mitre 10 sign, a happy accident for them i guess, but i was mainly trying to capture the glasshouse mountains station sign on platform 1. also: the rocks! i still cant get over how unbelievably different they are!

this glasshouse mountains station sign is on platform 2 at the beerburrum end of the platform. i love how there are trees in the background. the sun was trying very hard to poke through, but thankfully for these photos, the clouds persisted just long enough to capture the essence of my childhood memories of the journeys to caloundra.

the sunshine coast line as it is approaching glasshouse mountains from beerburrum. i am standing on platform 2, and the end of platform 1 is just visible on the extreme right of the shot. the rocks look particularly light in this photo in the foreground. further along the rocks revert back to the way i am used to seeing them presented.

the extreme end of platform 2 of glasshouse mountains station in the direction of beerburrum station. i zoomed in as far as my little camera would let me (not a half bad effort). the rocks in this shot are a mix of the standard rocks as well as the lighter ones. it appears that the closer towards glasshouse mountains station you get, the lighter the rocks.

looking back at glasshouse mountains station on the extreme southern end of platform 2. the footbridge joining the two platforms is visible. check out the sky. very impressed with my luck with the weather. i have even managed to capture a very distant looking station sign on platform 1.

the rocks are looking particularly light in this shot. having not been any further north than glasshouse mountains, i cant be certain that the rocks will continue in this form for the rest of the line, but i will eventually be able to answer my own question when i get back up here again. i am still on platform 2 in this photo, and have tried to capture platform 1 and the footbridge in this shot. the sky is starting to break up a bit in the shot, but for the most part, there is a nice high octa of cloud cover. this shot is looking along the platforms towards the beerwah end of the station.

how lucky was this!? no matter where i go, i seem to be pretty lucky with capturing diesels in my photos (clayfield is an exception, obviously) this southbound diesel casually chugged through glasshouse mountains along platform 1 while i was on platform 2. what do you think happened next? (no brainer really, hold on for a plethora of diesel at glasshouse mountains station photos!) note again, the lovely pale stones are visible.

the diesel rolls on past glasshouse mountains on platform 1, i like that this shot shows the cargo carriages deep into the distance. this shot is looking towards the beerwah end of station.

looking in the direction of beerburrum, the diesel rolls on past glasshouse mountains on its way south.

taken from the staircase on platform 2, looking south in the direction of beerburrum, i have captured the diesel as it rolls past glasshouse mountains station.

this time looking north towards beerwah form the staircase on platform 2 in order to capture the diesel cargo carriages as they pass glasshouse mountains station.

this time i have scurried along the footbridge towards platform 1 and got a shot as the diesel passes beneath me. this shot is looking north towards beerwah. platform 1 is on the left, platform 2 on the right. check out that sky!

probably not my best photography, but this is looking south towards beerburrum from the staircase on platform 1 of glasshouse mountains as the diesel passes through the station. you can see in the distance the points are set to allow the diesel to transfer from the track on platform 1 to the main track which runs through platform 2.

it was while i was on the staircase of platform 1 at glasshouse mountains that i noticed you can see one of the mountains in the distance. while it isnt all that visible in the photo, i assure you it is quite easy to see when here in person. i could be wrong, but this may be mount beerwah (correct me if i am wrong please!!)

looking north towards beerwah from the footbridge linking the platforms, this time sans diesel and cargo. platfrom 1 is on the left and platform 2 on the right. look at the surroundings on platform 2. glasshouse mountains is a truly beautiful area, and a lovely station. i am so glad i got to visit it so early in my train adventure.

looking along platform 1 after descending the staircase, this shot is looking north towards beerwah. the footbridge is visible at the top of the shot. the elevator tower is in the foreground. yes, i am still afraid of elevators, so no, i didnt ride in them. platform 2 is visible on the right of the shot. 

this glasshouse mountains station sign is on the side of the elevator tower on platform 1. im loving the artwork on the station walls.

this shot of the glasshouse mountains station sign is on platform 1 towards the beerwah end of the station.

this is the most northern point i have been on a train at this point in time. this shot is taken from platform 1 of glasshouse mountains station at the beerwah end of the platform. the very end, as far as you can go. looking in the direction of beerwah. hopefully i get to pass this point by train some time soon, when i eventually get to visit the station i am most eager to see: traveston.

looking back at glasshouse mountains station from the beerwah end of the station towards the beerburrum end. this was taken from the extreme end of platform 1. the rocks are mostly the beautiful lighter color unlike any of the other stations i have visited before. i have even captured a station sign on platform 1 in this shot.

looking across form platform 1 at the station sign on platform 2. beerwah station is to the right, beerburrum to the left.

this is platform 1 looking along the platform from the beerwah end towards the south in the direction of beerburrum. the footbridge is shown linking the two platforms. from the tower on platform 1 you can see one of the glasshouse mountains in the distance. platform 1 was not used by a commuter train while i was at the station, though a diesel carrying a lot of cargo carriages rolled through the station past platform 1.

this shot is from the tower on platform 2 looking in the northerly direction of beerwah station. it gives a great perspective of the lightness of the rocks that run though the glasshouse mountains station.

from the staircase on platform 2 looking at the entrance to the station. the car park is visible in the background the station office (including toilet) are towards the right of the shot just out of picture. the little yellow box in the center of the shot is the translink go card machine where commuters touch their card upon arrival at the station to either commence or terminate their journey once arriving at the station. in my case, i tagged off to end my journey from central, then took my photos before tagging back on to start a new journey: glasshouse mountains to dinmore.

here is the station office on platform 2 of glasshouse mountains. there is a translink box here as well. most stations are equipped with multiple machines to keep people moving.

from the station office looking at the staircase on platform 2. there is a wheelchair access path to help accommodate people who may require assistance.

the view as you enter the glasshouse mountains station from the car park, coming up the steps to platform 2. the sky was starting to fine up as i was nearing the end of my time at the station.

taken from platform 2 of glasshouse mountains looking across at the shelter on platform 1.

ok so this is a shot that you all knew was coming! the rocks! a close up of the rocks just to show the different colors of the stone that is used at this station. just another reason that glasshouse mountains is a really col station to visit.

the city bound train had been announced, and so i got one last photo of the station before it arrived on platform 2 to take me back to brisbane. look at the sky, how lucky was i to be able to arrive and get so many photos of the glasshouse mountains station with the lovely overcast sky i remember from my childhood, which added to the mystery of the area.

sadly i missed getting a shot of the train as it was approaching because a human walked across my view, meaning i couldnt use the shot. i quickly tried to get another shot, and this was the result. i proceeded to ride this train to caboolture, where i then changed to an ipswich train which stopped all stations so i could stay on the same train all the way to dinmore. one of the best parts of the journey from glasshouse mountains to dinmore was the price: the entire trip was free due to it being a continuation journey!

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