Once a month, we go to church in Waikari instead of Kaikoura. Normally, we go back home the same way we go there, via the Scargill Valley. In April, however, we went through Waipara to visit a friend on our way home. As we left Waikari, we noticed that the Weka Pass Railway had a sign out by the road, and then we saw the steam engine coming! This old railway line is only used now for an excursion train, and only runs a couple of days a month. We turned around and drove back to Waikari to see the train come into the station, and then Gayle got the idea of taking the children on a ride! Someone had to drive the van to the other end. He would have done it, but I offered to let him ride with the children, and I would drive the van and pick something up from a friend in Waipara on the way to the station at that end. The children loved that ride! They still talk about it. Hopefully we’ll be able to do it again sometime—I would love to go, too!
Coming into the Waikari station:
Coming up to Frog Rock:
The station in Waipara. This used to be the Cheviot railway station!
In places, the train goes through a pretty deep gorge.
There is a turntable at each end, on which the engine is turned around before being hooked up to the other end of the line of cars.
I happened upon this video of the railway. I haven’t watched it all—it’s 57 minutes!—but I watched snatches here and there through it. Beautiful scenery![youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZROMgxoIX0]