Sunday, July 07, 2013

Walking the Inner Circle Pt 1

I like the idea of walking things. I read a book by a chap who walked the length of Hadrians Wall in the north of England, east coast to west. It was an old book, and the weather wasn't very good when he walked, but nevertheless it was an interesting read.

Kiwi Nomad in New Zealand has walked the Spanish El Camino de Santiago pilgrim trail twice. Damned hard work and she has my admiration.

Tram Walker walked every tram route in Melbourne. I miss him but he completed his project.

Fun60 is presently walking the length of the Thames in sections over time, from the Thames Barrier to the source, a distance of nearly 300 kilometres.  She has only just begun so follow her journey on a separate blog here.

It is only after I walked a section that I have decided to walk the length of the defunct Inner City Railway Line. Who knows, after I have done that, maybe I will walk the old Rosstown Railway line or the discontinued Outer Circle Railway Line. Or maybe I will be over it after just doing the Inner Circle Railway line.

How did this come about? I have been along Royal Parade a few times in my life and in the back of my mind I knew the Inner Circle Railway Line crossed it, but where? I don't recall seeing any train crossing. I looked at an old map of the ICRL and saw where it crossed. I will investigate. Parallel to ICRL is a discontinued tram route too, also worthy of investigation.

I caught the tram to town and then the 19 tram along Elizabeth Street and Royal Parade. I left the tram just before Brunswick Road and this fine little lake with fountains greeted me as I left the tram.


Ah-ha. A bridge. Let me peer over the edge.


I doubt any authority would spend money on a huge cutting just for a bike path and you can see remaining staunchions, still supporting what look like high voltage electricity lines. I have recently learnt that staunchion can be spelt stanchion. The former looks correct to me, so I will use that. I am looking west but I started to walk east along park land of what is called the Capital City Trail. The trail in part follows the route of the old railway line.


Is the owl supposed to protect something? Is a vital piece of electricity infrastructure under threat of a pigeon attack?

I can't see how the owl can do much about leaning power poles. So alongside what look like high voltage wires on the old railway staunchions are more high voltage electricity wires on wooden poles.


The railway staunchion with wires. It looks  a bit cold, grey and dreary in the photos. It was.


Apart from the staunchions, there really wasn't a lot to see. Here is where the ICRL crossed Bowen Crescent and this is obviously the remains of old the railway crossing fencing.


A little of the track remains. My timing was not good. Much of the path was being worked on and so fenced off. I walked quite a bit on the adjacent streets.


Good heavens, an old railway station, re-purposed, as they say. It was the North Carlton Station. I'll put a bit of detail about the railway line in the next post.



This mural caught my eye.



19 comments:

  1. How long did the walk take?

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    1. Well over an hour Victor, but I suppose it is no more than 20 minute brisk walk.

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  2. I am glad the old railway station in North Carlton was re-purposed. But I wonder what the good burghers of North Carlton do for public transport now.

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    1. Hels, they are quite well serviced by north south trains and trams. Private buses on a not so frequent service run along the main east west roads. Actually, they have pretty good public transport.

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  3. That looks like a very interesting walk... I'll look forward to reading more. I always fancied living in an old station. Our unmanned village station (which is a listed building) was recently sold at auction after the restaurant which renovated the building failed. But it's still an active station and I wouldn't fancy having trains and commuters outside my window!

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    1. Craig, I have just one word for you. One way glass, or heavy tinting. If I thought of a station as a residence, I would think, high ceilings, hard to heat and possibly trains at night in a working station. Hydronic heating is rare here, so perhaps that overcomes high ceiling heating difficulties.

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  4. I like to see the old raolway tracks and stations repurposed rather than falling into disrepair. I will enjoy your walk and seeing bits of Melbourne other than the CBD. BTW Fun 60 is walking to the source of the Thames not the mouth.

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    1. Oh dear, thanks Diane. Fixed it. Nearly as bad as tigers in Africa. Although it is unfortunate that train lines are closed, it is good that they can be used as bike and walking trails.

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  5. what a cool thing to do!

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    1. Nerdy thing, I would have thought M, but thanks.

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  6. My husband walked the whole length of the Bibbulmun Track, one of the worlds longest walks, it goes from Kalamunda down to Albany, 1000kms..took him nearly five weeks and a lot of planning! Poor thing when we picked him up he'd lost so much weight, was quite a feat! I like the sound of your walk better Andrew :)

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    1. Good on him for the effort Grace, but walks like that are not for me and clearly not you either.

      Look forward to your post tomorrow.

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  7. p.s. your last shot is rather like my post tomorrow!

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  8. Very nice post!

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  9. Great post. I love it when you take your camera out and about and share some of your photos. Looks like an interesting walk finding out what is still left of the old line and whether any parts of it are being reused. Thanks for the mention, that was really kind of you.

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    1. Fun60, while the next post is mostly about a tram line, the further I have read about the train line, the more I have found to discover. I think we non original Australians like our short but interesting history in this country, well I and many others do.

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  10. I used to ride along the circle route when I worked at the hospital. Such a shame they decommissioned it, it would be ever so handy nowadays.

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  11. Fen, it wouldn't get the numbers to sustain a train, but a limited tram service would not cost much. Too late, anyway.

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