Thursday, 24 April 2014

wacol

ok, so i must give my sincerest of apologies to the north side of brisbane yet again, and in particular, the stations on the shorncliffe line. i do assure you i will make an effort to visit the stations on the shorncliffe line soon! it just so happens that assessment pieces keep popping up like mushrooms, and preventing students from having any real degree of life beyond churning out assignments. its funny, you hand one in, feel such a relief for getting rid of it, and before you have time to make a cup of tea, an email arrives in your inbox saying something along the line of: "hi students, your allocations for this next assignment have been released, please check to see which topic you have been allocated" and bam: you have another one to replace the one you have just finished slaving over until midnight. fun times indeed! i suppose it will all be worth it in the end, it is just getting to the end that seems so far off, just like (at the moment anyway) my attempts to visit a station on the shoncliffe line. i will get there eventually! you just never know where and when i may turn up.

so, yet again i am visiting a station on the ipswich line. this time i am visiting wacol, which follows from my entries about ebbw vale, dinmore and you could even extend that to the wulkuraka entry as well and say that wacol is the fourth station i have visited on this line. so, why wacol? well, there are a couple of reasons (as there always are). april has been pretty hectic for us, so even a task as simple as catching a train to some random station has been beyond me. i have been to wacol a few times before, usually with friends or with karen. if you have read the corinda blog entry, you will know all about the saga from october 2013 where her train broke down and she tried to get to wacol. the wacol station is probably best described as the first station on the ipswich line, because it is the first true station on the ipswich line. heading outbound, it is preceded by darra, which is the last common station between the springfield and ipswich lines. at darra the line splits off and continues to richlands on the springfield line, and wacol on the ipswich line. to get to wacol from darra, the ipswich line travels behind the arthur gorrie correctional centre, better known as the wacol gaol. on the train, wacol is about four minutes from darra, and of a morning when heading inbound from wacol to darra, you can usually see families of kangaroos on the hillside near the gaol. as the train speeds past, you can also see signs which say 'keep out prison property'. i have often wondered if on the other side of the sign facing the gaol it says 'keep out, queensland rail property'.

heading outbound, the next station after wacol is gailes. gailes is a station i am yet to officially visit. you can see gailes very easily from the ipswich motorway, while wacol is tucked in behind some businesses, and not directly visible from the highway. one thing i have noticed about wacol, is each time the train comes in to wacol from gailes, it appears to glide in rather slowly, like a plane coming in to land. this is particularly noticeable on a wet day. actually, while thinking of wacol and wet days: i remember once when i was heading back to dinmore after class in second year (must have been after october 2012) it was a little drizzly, and as the train was getting to wacol it may or may not have been going a little fast, and it didn't stop in time, and the first carriage overshot the platform. perhaps the second one did too, though i cant be sure because i was in the second train not the first train of the six car train (thats a lot of trains! yes, im not that great at english, im aware of that fact). the poor driver and guard must have not really known what to do, because we were there for a while, the doors werent opening, and people were starting to get antsy; particularly those who were wanting to disembark at wacol station. they announced they were going to try to reverse the train, and after a while, with no movement, another announcement: something along the lines of we wont be stopping at wacol (we were already stopped, just couldnt open the doors because part of the train was beyond the platform) and that people wanting wacol station needed to disembark at gailes and catch a city train back to wacol. if only i had needed wacol that day: it would have been a chance to collect gailes!

another trip involving wacol was when my friend who i visited springfield central with, dropped to me wacol after we had been out as a group in first term of third year. he let me choose between oxley, darra and wacol. me being me, i couldnt decide, so he chose wacol for me since i hadnt been there officially at that point. my first time at wacol was courtesy of him. he is also famous for being the one who converted me from paper tickets to the go card. now i am determined to get every station on the one student go card before i have to retire it. yeah, i am going to struggle there, but it would be so awesome to achieve it! when he dropped me at wacol, i happened to have my camera with me, and just so happened to take a few pictures of the station as a significant statement of 'yeah, ive been here'. ironically, those photos visible below, are the very first photos of a train station i took, and even more amazingly, they were actually taken before i started this blog. the idea came to me much later on, once second term had started. so technically, wacol could have been my first station i blogged about. i have held it back for so long for the simple reason that i didnt have any more photos of it since that day about a year ago!

in mid april we decided to use wacol station because with easter coming up, karen wanted to visit her friend jan who lives at moorooka, since they hadnt caught up in a little while. ever the good friend she is, she arranged to catch up with jan on the thursday before the holidays started, which was our last day of term before the mid term break. (scary to think that this is going to be my last mid term break of a first term! geez this degree is going quickly) the option of parking at moorooka station itself, appealing as the idea is, it isnt the most practical. parking at moorooka is not exactly easy. now, i have been through moorooka a few times (the day i went to beenleigh and the trip to nerang which you can read about in my blog) and there isnt really a parking area other than on the side of the road (major road, very busy, not ideal for merging back into traffic, possibility of vehicle damage. car is much safer at ebbw vale which is known for car park vandalism, therefore not parking at mooroka!) there is a tiny commuter car park, some distance away, however when you drive past so many stations in order to get to moorooka in the first place, wouldnt it make more sense to use one of them? yeah, we thought so too. ok, so we are parked at wacol. bear in mind that during this week we had been at dinmore on monday and tuesday, and norman park on wednesday (so i got to collect norman park, park road and dutton park on the wednesday, pretty neat to have three parks in one day!) so adding wacol made 6 stations for the week, not including roma street where i change trains and dont always tag my card. on thursday we had to leave extremely early, as karen had to open her store. the store opens at 7am, meaning getting to central no later than 6:30 so she can get to the store, set up tills etc, which meant being up at 4am to leave at 5am to catch a train that normally passes through dinmore at 5:39am so gets to wacol a bit later than that. yeah, it was a slightly exhausting morning for us both, thankfully i had class at 8am, a pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics lecture with stefanie to attend, so the early arrival didnt really bother me too much! 


i got my beenleigh train to dutton park for the lectures, and afterwards had to walk to the buranda shops to get a cake to take to jan for desert. one of my friends (the same friend from the springfield central blog, who was the one who first took me to wacol last year!) kindly drove me the short distance to the shops where i attempted to decide quickly what cake to purchase. bear in mind that by this time i had been up for more than 12 hours (not just awake, i mean up as in upright, doing things) so naturally i was rather fatigued. i do feel sorry for the poor girl who served me, but i eventually made a decision, and then walked with chosen cake to the buranda station. back inbound to central i went, then karen and i caught an ipswich back to wacol so we could go to jans. visiting friends is always fun, and it was a good night with lots of laughs. it was a 7 station week, with wacol and buranda stations the two i collected which were the most unexpected from a standard week on the trains.

my first photo at wacol station. actually, my first photo of a train station! i took this shot before i even started writing trainspotting, after a friend dropped me off at the station one day. i didnt have long to wait for the train, but got a few photos to prove i had been there. not long after these shots were taken, the idea of my trainspotting blog was born. this shot is taken on platform 1, as i waited for an ipswich train back home to dinmore. this crossing is at the darra end of the station, looking in the direction of the darra station. darra is a fair distance from here, it is about four minutes on the train that separates the two stations. further along this line on the right is the wacol prison.

had i actually been doing my blog at the time i got these photos, i would have taken a shot of that inbound train on platform 2 at wacol station, before i decided to get a shot of it traveling in the direction of darra. never mind. at least this shot from platform 1 in the direction of darra shows a train! the sky is lovely and overcast, and for memory it was raining by the time i got to dinmore. this train is one of the many trains on the network with wifi in all carriages.


my first photo of a wacol station sign, and i wasnt even writing the blog when i took it! this seems so long ago now looking back at this photo. this sign in on platform 2, at the darra end of the station. i took this shot from platform 1 looking across at platform 2. look at that lovely bold font. that is much better than the signs at dinmore!

the boom gates lower and the alarm sounds, as the ipswich train arrives on platform 1 at wacol to take me to dinmore. the rail crossing crosses wacol station road, which is a fairly busy road. every time i have been to wacol station, there has been a steady flow of traffic crossing the tracks.

i love the smell of wacol in the morning. well actually it doesnt have much of a smell at all. at least not like dinmore on a morning when there are cattle at the holding pens near the station! i got this shot around 5:30 in the morning in mid april, when karen and i had arrived at wacol station. the sky was surprisingly light at that stage of the morning, which was a surprise for late april in queensland. this shot is taken from platform 2 looking across at one of the shelters on platform 1. the artwork at wacol station is simply beautiful, and features a lot of animals due to the stations proximity to the rspca.

the entrance to wacol station platform 2 at the gailes end of the station has a ramp which leads up the the platform. this colorful mural is on the back of one of the shelters and you pass it as you walk up the ramp. even this early in the morning, i can appreciate the effort that has gone into this piece, and stopped to get a photo.

this is one of my better photos i got on the morning karen and i got to the wacol station early to get a train in to central by 6:30 so she could open her store. i really like the lighting in this shot. this photo was taken on platform 2 showing the staircase and over bridge linking the platforms.

this is probably not my best photo, but i wanted to include virtually every photo i have taken at each station to give anyone viewing my blog a good look at what each station truly looks like. this shot of wacol station shows the staircase on platform 1 which faces towards darra, while the previous shot shows the staircase on platform 2 faces towards gailes.


looking along platform 2 at wacol station, towards the darra end. platform 2 is in the foreground, and platform 1 in the background. look at that beautiful sky. surprisingly, it wasnt freezing cold considering we were there just after 5:30 in the morning in april! the highway is behind the trees which are behind platform 1.

yeah, we were a bit early! taken from the footbridge joining the platforms, this is the wacol station carpark on the platform 2 side at the darra end. there is another section of carpark on this side of the station at the gailes end, as well as parking on the platform 1 side. ive never had any trouble getting a park at wacol station, though this may have something to do with the fact ive only ever driven there super early, super late or on a weekend. sadly, wacol station doesnt have drive through carparks, which is a shame, because they are the easiest to get out of! anyone who has been in a car wth me knows parking isnt one of my great skills.

taken from the footbridge looking towards the darra end of wacol station. platform 2 is on the left in the foreground, and platform 1 is on the right. near the center of the photo is the railway crossing where the ipswich line crosses wacol station road. even this early in the morning, there was still a trickle of traffic along that road, so its pretty busy. the highway isnt really visible in this shot, but it is located over towards the right behind the trees. you cant really see wacol station that well from the highway, but you can see the lights.

i really like this photo of wacol station, even if a car photo bombed it by driving along wacol station road when i got the photo. platform 2 is on the left, platform 1 is on the right. i got this shot from the footbridge joining the platforms, looking towards the darra end. the bridge is well fenced so i had to reach up as high as i could to get the photo. i think it turned out pretty well. the sky is amazing in the photo.

after excessive debate within myself, i have included this shot, although i have unfortunately captured a human on the platform. apologies to the woman waiting on platform 2, if you wish to have the image removed, please let me know. i just really like the way the lighting looks in this shot, it makes wacol station look incredibly beautiful, and until i can get back to the station around 5:30 in the morning, i dont think i will be able to replicate this shot. platform 1 is on the left, platform 2 is on the right, the ipswich train arrives on platform 1, the inbound city train arrives on platform 2. the station office is the large building with the red roof near the woman waiting on the platform. behind platform 1 are the (presumably) disused tracks. i think this is one of my better photos.

why not get a photo of the footbridge joining wacol platform 1 to the carpark on the southern side of the station? this part of the footbridge isnt fenced as high, so thats what makes me think the tracks beneath it are disused. also, this part of the footbridge is not elevated as high as the bridge joining platforms 1 and 2. this shot is taken looking south.

i walked along the footbridge to get a shot of the disused tracks on the southern side of the platform behind platform 1. this is taken looking towards the gailes end of wacol station. platform 1 is to the right, just out of shot. the carpark on the platform 1 side is to the left of the shot. in the foreground is a bus stop. this is where karen got of the rail bus the night of the corinda adventure. there were some other people waiting at wacol for an inbound bus to the city (since the trains were out). they were starting to get pretty antsy to the queensland rail staff member who was trying to help them. i wish i had done more to help the lady from queensland rail now, because it wasnt her fault the train couldnt get through.

trying really hard to not capture any humans, i am heading down the staircase on platform 2 to join karen in waiting for our train to to central. this shot of wacol station is looking along the platforms in the direction of gailes. the sun is starting to come up now.

back on platform 2, i can still explore and get a few shots until the train comes. looking from platform 2 to platform 1, this waiting shelter has a lovely mural painted on it. railway station artwork is something i really enjoy. i dont think any station does it quite as well as norman park, but wacol does come in pretty close. the sun is slowly coming up. it must be amazing to be driving the trains when the sun comes up. sadly i sort of cut the wacol station sign off in this photo. i think i make up for it a bit later on though.

this shelter is on platform 2 at the darra end of wacol station. its a shame for the lighting in this shot, because i really wanted to highlight the mural of the wacol rspca. i have always loved animals. if it has four legs and a tail and doesnt talk, i will automatically love it. im more of a cat person than a dog person, but thats probably because dogs generally grow to be far larger than cats, and when youre not very big yourself, a playful dog can knock you over. still, i really do love all animals, i would love to be able to volunteer at a place like rspca some day. one of my relatives, marie from the norman park blog, has volunteered here and loved it. look at the way that lady and cat are looking at one another, thats the way i used to be with my cat. i miss her greatly. she looked just like the whiskas cat. i think there is nothing better than when you are laying in bed reading (or studying) and your cat climbs up on you and lays down on your body, pokes its head under your book as if to say 'what are you doing?' there is a book about cats having aspergers, and since i have aspergers, perhaps that explains why i always seem to get along so well with cats?

this is one of my better shots, looking back at wacol station from the darra end of platform 2, near the crossing. it shows the tracks of the ipswich line really well, and both platforms. you can also see the footbridge on the top right, which links the two platforms. behind the shelter is the footbridge linking platform 1 to the southern carpark. it isnt the best view of it, but there is a station sign visible near the shelter on platform 1.

im going to go out on a limb here, and say this is the best photo of a train station that i have ever taken. i really like this shot. some of my ebbw vale ones from my previous blog were pretty descent, but i think this one surpasses them. this is wacol station taken from platform 2, looking across at the staircase on platform 1. i have included the footbridges linking the platforms and the carpark on the southern side of the station. but wow, that sky and the lighting. i could look at this shot for hours. yeah, i think i was right in my ebbw vale blog. my photography has improved.

just before the train came, i quickly took this shot of the wacol station sign on platform 2 near where we were standing. in the background behind the sign is a white looking dot. that dot is the moon.

before i got on the train, i stopped to get this shot of the city bound train on platform 2 at wacol station. this shot is looking in the direction of darra. i wanted to get one looking back along the length of the train, towards gailes, but there were a few people still on the platform, and i am really trying hard to not capture humans in my photos.

by now karen has already found a seat, and im still in the doorway of the carriage, trying to get a clear shot of the wacol station sign on platform 2. the moon is still visible in the top of the shot. as we rode in to central, i went back through my pictures i had taken in the last few minutes, while karen rested her eyes for a while. this train stopped at all stations. normally of a morning we get a train running express from darra to milton stopping only at indooroopilly, but this early, they stop at all the stations in between.

i went back to wacol station on my day off to get a few more shots of the station in daylight, since the only shots i had of the station so far were the few on my first visit on a very overcast day, and the ones above taken at dawn. pretty as the dawn photos are, not many people will see the station in that light, so the following shots are wacol station in daylight. i got this shot as i arrived at the station. this was taken in the southern car park near the darra end of the station. i wanted to show the bridge which links this carpark with the wacol platforms. at the time i didnt really notice, but it could probably do with a pain job to be honest. it was a beautiful sunny day without a cloud in the sky when i arrived at the station in the morning.


i climbed up the staircase from the previous photo, and got this shot looking towards darra. there is a great view of the crossing in the middle of the shot. the disused tracks are prominent in this photo, which makes the crossing especially wide. at the time i wasnt too impressed that i captured a car in the photo, but i guess it gives a good indication of the width of the crossing in relation to a car, since the little car has just finished passing over the track from platform 2. platform 1 and the ramp leading to it are on the left of the shot.

these tracks behind platform 1 really dont look like they have been used much at all in recent times. platform 1 is on the right of this shot, taken from the footbridge, but this time looking towards gailes station. there is a wacol station sign visible on platform 1.

at the top of the staircase on platform 1, i got this photo looking towards darra. again, the crossing is visible, and you can see how wide it is. the crossing here at wacol is much wider than the crossing at cannon hill which has had a number of near misses and a recent fatality. this shot has a descent view of the ramp leading to platform 1, which gives access to people in wheelchairs or scooters, and mums with prams. often of a morning when karen and i are heading to the city, we will see a number of people in those high visibility shirts who disembark the train at wacol. i think a number of them are people with slight disabilities, and they go to work nearby for the endeavour foundation not far from the wacol station. i think it is wonderful that these people are given an opportunity and have a degree of independence and a sense of responsibility.

standing on the top of the footbridge linking the two platforms, and enjoying the view from wacol station towards darra. i had a similar photo at dawn only a few days before this one was taken. they both turned out pretty well i think. 
**i just noticed that if you zoom this shot right in, you will see the ipswich train is approaching. i didnt realise you could see it when i took the photo! i know my eyesight is pretty ghastly, but without the aid of significant zooming, the train is invisible!

before i realised there was a train coming, i turned to get a shot overlooking wacol station from the footbridge, looking in the direction of gailes. this is essentially the same picture as i got the morning i was here with karen at dawn, where there was a lady waiting on platform 2. platform 1 for the ipswich line is on the left of the shot, platform 2 inbound for the city is on the right.

just my luck! i hadnt even noticed there was a train due, when what do i see approaching in the distance! the ipswich train is heading towards wacol station! awesome timing! i couldnt have actually planned it any better if i had tried.

it would have been so cool if i had waited just a fraction of a second longer before i got this photo, so that the ipswich train was just that little bit closer to the bottom of the shot. since the trains move at a descent velocity, even when approaching a station, i wasnt game to hesitate, in case i messed it up and ended up with a blurry mess like some of the shots i have taken in the past which werent fit for publishing. it didnt turn out too badly i suppose, as the ipswich train arrives on platform 1 of wacol station.

clicking as rapidly as i could on my not so high tech camera, i got this shot as fast as i could after the previous one had saved. i guess it goes to show how fast the trains travel. this is the ipswich train on platform 1 of wacol station on a sunny sunday morning. you would have to be foolish to try to cross the tracks with one of these babies approaching. seriously, they are so big and so powerful, and have so much momentum. you would have to be crazy, stupid or suicidal. 
one evening at dinmore i was waiting for the ipswich to arrive with karen on it, and some youths were mucking around on the platform. speaking isnt exactly one of my gifts, and nor is speaking to strangers, so i was reluctant to say anything. one of them decided they wanted to sit on the platform with their legs dangling over the edge. this was after the caboolture train had been through dinmore and the ipswich had been announced as arriving in the next two minutes. the friends on platform 1 were discouraging the idiot on platform 2 from doing this, but he continued to do so, and remained sitting there as the ipswich train arrived. i know i should have done something, and next time if i am in this situation i will, because that is so incredibly dangerous. playing on tracks is not something to laugh and joke about.

wow, now this is fortunate! not only have i captured the ipswich train on platform 1, but the caboolture train is approaching platform 2. i seriously couldnt have timed it any better! i had only been at the station a few minutes when i happened to get these photos. i think overall i spent a good half hour there in total on this occasion, and these were the only trains i saw the entire time. how lucky i was to be able to be in such a great position to be able to photograph them! the only thing missing was a diesel. alas, it wasnt to be.

i learned from my previous mistake, if you can call it a mistake, and held off as long as i possibly could to get this shot of the caboolture train as it glided in to platform 2 at wacol station. this is what i had been aiming to do in my shot above for the ipswich train, though i was a touch premature with my clicking. the caboolture train looks beautiful as it arrives at wacol station next to the ipswich which is ready to depart for gailes. this caboolture train is one of the trains on the network with wifi capabilities. its always fun to get a wifi train, not that it meant much to me until recently when i got an ipad, but they are incredibly rare on the ipswich line. the ipswich line usually goes through to caboolture, which is one of the longest journeys on the network. sometimes the trains terminate at bowen hills and dont go to caboolture. for us, a wifi train is like heaven, i get to use my ipad, and karen gets a comfortable seat. win:win!

the caboolture train stops on platform 2, as i get a shot of it from the staircase. i had never really looked at the roof of the trains before, but compared to the ipswich train, this one has a much flatter roof. i know they are different models, and to be honest i dont really have a preference between them, i like all of the trains. if would be nice if more of them had wifi, but seriously: thats a first world problem, and we live in a world with far more worries than being bothered by which trains have wifi! this shot is looking in the direction of darra, taken from the top of the staircase on platform 2. look at that train. if anyone tells you trains arent beautiful, show them these photos.

taken from the staircase on platform 2, looking along the platforms at wacol as the caboolture train as it waits at the station. i was at the station for probably about half an hour all up, and didnt see any further trains after this caboolture train departed. the sky looks lovely in this shot. the day was warm, and i was at a station photographing trains instead of being at work. such an awesome morning!

goodbye, farewell caboolture service. i got one last parting shot before the train left the wacol station bound for darra. this carriage of the caboolture service is a quite carriage. the quiet carriages are in the middle carriage of each train, so in a six car train they become the second and second last carriages. karen and i usually sit in a quiet carriage when we get on at dinmore of a morning. we enjoy the silence, which is often useful if i am meant to be studying or reading something for uni. one morning during my second year of uni when we were heading inbound on the morning of our oral exam in second term, we made the mistake of sitting in the quiet carriage. im a naturally nervous speaker, and always did horribly in english at school because i couldnt write essays, couldnt write narratives, was terrible at grammar (still am) and was a nervous speaker. needless to ay, an oral exam at university level is far more nerve wracking than anything high school could ever throw at me. karen tried to calm me down, but by the time the train had gotten to darra, i think i had freaked out the entire carriage with how nervous i was about the exam. there is an interesting correlation i have with degree of nervousness and the results obtained. the more nervous i am, the better i tend to do. this bizarrely goes for all exams. despite having an entire quiet carriage of commuters glaring at me and having karen tell me that perhaps i should pull out of uni if i get this nervous, i somehow held it together and got through the exam. it was to become my best performance in an oral exam! i still havent equaled that score, and doubt i ever will.

no more trains to photograph, so i will concentrate these next few images on the station itself and the surroundings. looking along wacol station road at the darra end of wacol station itself, i got this shot on the northern side of the station, looking in a remotely south direction. the wacol station, out of view, is to the right.

at the darra end of wacol station platform 2, there is this cute reminder of the rspca. as i have metioned before, i love animals, and this is incredibly cute. not only are the animals themselves gorgeous, and vibrantly colured, they are also in a makeshift train carriage with a medical cross on it. it would be even cooler if the cross was actually red, but perhaps they arent allowed to do so.

does this look familiar? following my efforts at wulkuraka, cannon hill and mitchelton, i couldnt resist getting a shot from the wacol crossing looking towards darra station. there is just something remarkably peaceful about looking at this shot. not as peaceful as the wulkuraka one, but it is in the same league. the track on the left is the inbound line, the one on the right is the outbound ipswich line.

at the darra end of wacol platform 1, are these amusing little animals. i had always thought the black and white one was meant to be a cat, but closer up, im not so sure, not at all certain what the others are meant to be, but they are indeed cute!

this time from the crossing at the platform 1 side, looking across at platform 2. you can see the shelter with the rspca mural of the woman and cat. also, the yellow sign on platform 2 is worth reading. i dont think enough people take notice of those signs.

another familiar style of photo for people who follow my blog. repeating my efforts from wulkuraka, cannon hill and mitchelton, this is the wacol version. looking along the station from the crossing at the darra end in the direction of gailes. platform 1 for the ipswich line is on the left, platform 2 is on the right.

there is a ramp which joins the crossing to each platform. walking up the ramp at the darra end of platform 2, i stopped to get this shot to show another station sign. i love the bold font of wacol, so much nicer than the small italics on the signs at dinmore and corinda. norman park isnt too bad, but dinmore and corinda really do need to be bolder. in the background you can see the footbridge linking platform 1 to the southern carpark.

i couldnt resist getting a shot of the mural on platform 2, to show how cute that cat on the pillow looks. sort of reminds me of a persian scene from the sarah brightman song: harem (awesome song!) the purple thing the pillow is on reminds me of a brain.

looking along platform 2 of wacol station in the direction of gailes. this shot is taken at the darra end of the station and shows the footbridge linking the platforms as well as the bridge linking platform 1 with the southern car park. the inbound line to the city is in the foreground, and the ipswich line is in the background on the left.

i got this shot from the crossing looking at the disused tracks behind platform 1, just to show what they actually look like. they really dont look like they get much use, or have had much use in recent times. nice view of the bridge linking the car park on the left to platform 1. the car park behind the trees is the parking area where the bus arrived the night karen caught a rail bus from corinda.

i took this photo looking towards darra from the wacol station road crossing. this shot shows the disused tracks. the station itself is to the left. these tracks run behind platform 1 of wacol station.

this is a better shot of the shelter on platform 2 showing the woman and cats. i love animals! they all have unique personalities. its funny, i study pharmacy, but i dont like people and i dont like drugs. i could be a vet, but i would hate to have to euthanase an animal. for me that would be heartbreaking. i got this shot from the darra end of platform 1 looking across at platform 2.

still on platform 1 at wacol, this time showing the staircase how they point in different directions on the two platforms. the yellow box at the base of the stairs is one of the terminals you can use to tag your go card when you arrive at the station to either mark the beginning or end of your journey. the terminals are usually located at station exits/entrances and in convenient locations such as near staircases. currently it is set up that after nine journeys during a week, your tenth (and subsequent journeys if there are any) will be free. usually i get free journeys by wednesday or thursday at the latest because i catch so many trains!

this mural is on platform 1, towards the darra end of the station. it was difficult to frame, and is best appreciated in person. this is the shelter i was waiting at when i first used wacol station before my trainspotting adventure was born. my very first wacol photos were taken from near this shelter. i have always loved the murals at norman park, and the ones that run behind platform 1 at norman park are so far unrivaled in my adventures. i have to admit that these wacol shelter murals rival the murals in the norman park shelters. as someone who is so ghastly at anything remotely creative, and lacks even the most remote skills for anything artistic, i truly appreciate the effort that has gone into a piece of work like this.

still on platform 1, looking along the platform in the direction of gailes, the shelter with the rspca woman and cat mural is on the right, and the shelter from the previous photo is visible on the left just below the footbridges. the wacol station road crossing is just behind me from where i took the photo at the darra end of the platform.

at the darra end of platform 1 you will see this little sculpture. still not sure exactly what each animal is, but as i said earlier, they are all incredibly cute! perhaps the one at the bottom is meant to be a wombat. the ramp to platform 1 is to the right of the photo. once again i have been photo bombed by a passing car traveling through the crossing.

heading towards the gailes end of platform 1, you will find this incredibly cute mural. i think anyone who knows me knows i am not a fan of children, especially loud small children in a quiet carriage. however, i can appreciate art, and this is a really lovely piece. the little dog is especially cute! once i finish uni i hope i can do some degree of volunteering at rspca, because i think we should all do our bit for animals. perhaps if more people gave their time to this organisation, there would be less animal cruelty or animal abandonment. one can only hope.

this mural is on a shelter at the gailes end of platform 2, and i tried to capture it as best i could from platform 1 so that you could see it fairly well. definitely best viewed in person, this is an incredibly colourful piece, and reminds me of a childrens book. perhaps it is designed for children, im not sure, but i really like it. do you recognise any of the characters in the picture? you probably should, the black and white creature near the bin looks very cat like in the image (though the sculpture at the end of platform 1 looks more like a dog than a cat!) the koala in the back of the truck should also look familiar, even if she has changed colour. im totally loving the little blue things with the big eyes. since the bus is heading to blobville, im guessing they are called blobs. whatever they are, i think they are cute. love the cat up in the tree too; however the psychedelic dog near the purple car has me a bit worried as someone who has studied a fair amount of pharmacology...

back to actual train lines again now, which is what this is meant to be about anyway! this shot is taken from the very end of platform 1 at wacol, looking along the tracks in the direction of gailes. the ipswich line is the one on the left, and the line to the city on the right. the gravel area on the road side of the fence is often lined with cars, as wacol is a fairly popular station, and seems to have more popularity than the size of its car parks would indicate. the sky is still perfect, i dont know how i managed to get such an awesome day for my day off, and what better way to spend it than working on my blog. far more fun than study or assignments!

taken from the gailes end of platform 1, looking back along the platform at the wacol station, the ipswich line is in the foreground, and the city line in the background. the shelter with the mural from the above photo is visible on platform 2 towards the right of the photo, near the station office. i think this is a nice shot of wacol station.

probably not the nicest photo ive taken at wacol station, but i thought it was worth including, because these are the disused tracks which run behind platform 1, and if not included, it wouldnt be a complete view of the station. it seems such a waste that they arent used anymore, but i am sure there is a reason. the southern car park is visible just behind the tracks.


back up on the top of the staircase, looking along platform 1 in the direction of gailes. the station office is on the right of the photo. i would have got a better shot of the office, but there were people waiting there, and i am trying super hard to avoid capturing humans in my photos.

the northern car park at the gailes end of the station has a ramp which leads up to platform 2 near the station office. in order to get to the platform, you walk past the back of the shelter which had the psychedelic dog pictured a few photos above. this mural is on the back of that shelter, and these sculptures sit between the shelter and the ramp. in all honesty, how could i not photograph that! i dont want to be offensive, so lets just say it is a very colourful and interesting image! i can still appreciate the creativity and ability that has gone into the image, because i have an extreme lack of all artistic ability. i actually got consistently bad marks in art in high school, i was more of a science student.

this wacol station sign is between the shelter and the station office on platform 2. platform 1 is in the background of this photo. the psychedelic shelter is to the right, out of picture. bold fonts on the station signs all the way!

the wacol station office as seen from near the ramp leading to platform 2. this is towards the gailes end of the platform looking along towards the darra end. platform 1 is on the right of the photo.

the return of the psychedelic shelter. this time with wacol station sign included. platform 2, looking towards the gailes end of the station. its good that the shelter has a small sign stating that this is the platform to wait on if you wish to travel inbound to the city. this is incredibly useful, and could be used at more stations. 

at the gailes end of platform 2, looking towards gailes, the tracks venture off into the distance. gailes station itself isnt all that far from wacol station, and you could actually walk between the two station along the road which is to the right of the photo. you can still see the gravel areas where cars are often parked during the day. on the odd occasion we finish class early and i get a train back to dinmore in daylight instead of and evening train with karen, there will be numerous cars lining the fence.

looking back along platform 2 of wacol in the direction of darra. i got this shot at the extreme gailes end of the platform. the city line is in the foreground and the ipswich line is in the background. you can see the station office is on the left of the photo. the footbridge looks far away in the photo, but really it isnt much farther down the platform than the station office.

i got this shot as an after thought as i walked back along the platform. on the northern side of the wacol station, this carpark is at the gailes end of the station. i wanted to show the bike storage units were painted with animals. to me, that is really cool. just another really awesome tribute to the local rspca. these facilities are at a lot of stations i have noticed. most of the time they are a royal blue in colour. wacol however, dares to be different. i like that.

seriously how cute is that blob! it reminds me of the giant microbes they sell at the coop bookshop at the university of queensland st lucia campus (very awesome bookshop by the way!) i think this one most looks like the amoeba, what do you think? this little thing is behind the psychedelic shelter on platform 2 at wacol station. you pass by it as you walk up the ramp to the platform from the northern carpark towards the gailes end of the station.

this is a better photo of the shelter on platform 1 that i photographed a few shots earlier. this time taken on platform 2 looking across at platform 1. they really are best viewed in person. i got this shot as i went along platform 2, heading again towards the crossing for my last few photos at wacol station.

on the northern side of the station, near platform 2, looking along the path that links the platforms near the crossing. you can see the back end of the unidentified black and white animal sculpture on the end of platform 1. like all the other stations i have visited with a level crossing, wacol station has automatic gates which close to block the path of the humans so they cannot cross the tracks when a train is approaching.

from the platform 1 side, this time looking away from wacol station, to show the crossing has an automatic barrier gate on the opposite side of the road to the station itself. i think this is a great idea. this shot kind of gives an indication of the width of the crossing, and it is only shows the active part of the crossing, the disused tracks are to the right, out of picture.

look familiar? it should, but it isnt a repeated photo. i tried a few different things here, despite what you may think. firstly, i crossed the road to get the shot from the opposite side of the road to the station so that the level crossing wasnt in the picture as i looked along the line in the direction of darra. it is directly behind me as i got this shot. also, despite my imposingly great height of five foot two, i decided to get down lower to the ground to show the tracks closer to the camera without zooming. being so small, i was able to get down pretty low without actually laying down (highly dangerous, and not even i am that crazy). i love the way this turned out. the inbound city line is on the left and the outbound ipswich line is on the right. this shot definitely rivals my efforts at wulkuraka.

you cant have one without the other! looking back at wacol station from where the previous shot was taken, this time to show the level crossing in the foreground and the station in the background. i probably could have centered it a little better, but i wasnt exactly going to stand in the middle of the tracks for a long time to size everything up. i think i was there for all of 20 seconds to get both shots. far long enough. platform 1 and the ipswich line are on the left, platform 2 and the city line are on the right. i actually think in this shot you can see how low down i get a little better than in the previous photo. thats one of the advantages of being small and hyperflexible!

no, i am not standing in the middle of the road, i promise. i am not quite that daft. i am on the crossing on the opposite side of the road to the wacol train station, and got this shot to look back at the station so the level crossing was in the foreground. i even tried to get the unidentifiable animals at the end of platform 1 in the shot to keep things consistent. the footbridges look good in this shot. platform 2 is straight in front of me, and you can see directly along the straight edge of the platform. it is probably a better shot of platform 1 and the ipswich line than of platform 2. i like the way this photo turned out. i really think my photography is indeed improving. perhaps i could make a career out of train blogging?

i think this shot was taken from almost the exact same spot as my best ever photo of a train station, only this time in real daylight, not at the rack of dawn! its also not zoomed in quite as much. while it is still a pretty photo, and the sky is a rich blue, it isnt quite as atmospheric as the photo above that im referring to. still, this is a nice shot of wacol station. taken on platform 2 looking across at platform 1 and including the footbridges and staircase. you can see the bridge linking platform 1 with the southern carpark really well in this shot.

back over the bridge i headed, with what i thought were enough photos of wacol. but hey, whats one more? looking towards darra to get another elevated shot of the level crossing. platform 2 is in the foreground and platform 1 is on the right.

it seems only fitting that my last photo of wacol station should include an animal theme since the station gives so many wonderful tributes to the rspca. this shelter is no different, despite being in the carpark on the southern side of the station. it is also rather fitting that this is my last shot at wacol, because it is here that my story with wacol actually began. my friend dropped me off at this station on my first visit, and i walked past this shelter on my way to platform 1 for an ipswich train on the day my first wacol photos were taken. those photos are older than my trainspotting blog itself. this shelter also has the significance of the october corinda saga, when karen caught the rail bus, and i picked her up from wacol station, via an interesting journey to tennyson. the rail bus dropped the passengers off here in this carpark right near this shelter. i think this is the perfect shot to close my chapter on wacol, since this is where it all began. friends, trains, buses, the birth of my blog, the rspca and some incredibly cute paw prints around the top of the shelter. yeah, wacol station is pretty cool, holds a lot of significant moments for this blog, looks beautiful at dawn, and was well worth visiting again.

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