Walk 1 was from Fairfield to East Kew.
Walk 2 was from East Kew to East Camberwell.
Walk 3 was from East Camberwell to Ashburton.
Walk 4, this final one, was from Ashburton to Hughesdale.
I caught the train from Flinders Street Station to Camerberwell and changed to the Alamein shuttle train. Unlike the last time, the change of trains went smoothly. The train passed by the sweet little and graffiti free Willison Station.
I left the train at Ashburton and discovered a little wall garden growing on the High Street bridge.
Looking back towards the city where the line widens to double track from single track. There is a siding to the right.
Ashburton used to be our local shops when we lived in the area. It was, and appears that it still is, a good and quite busy shopping centre. I noticed that are now many places to have coffee and food that weren't there in the early nineties.
I have seen these markers in places where you aren't on a road, such as at Albert Park Lake and along the water front at Spotswood. They make sense as it is difficult to identify your location by street names when you aren't near a street.
Alamein Station, the last station on the line. It was built in 1948 when the line was extended to service the new government built housing commission estate. Of course there was the original line that ran from Ashburton to Waverley Road Station, but that was fully removed in 1940, the steel used to to make bullets to shoot at the Hun and Japs.
There are still some of the original Housing Commission houses but most have been altered almost beyond recognition.
A quite neat original.
While it offended many good housing tenants, a politician was heard to proclaim that you can easily tell which houses are rented and which ones are owned.
This is much more like the current housing standard in Ashburton, many being built on the bones of the original housing commission stock.
Good to see the railways keeping up with the latest technology.
Whoa, someone has nicked the train track. I am not sure of why there is a fibre optic train cable running along where a train hasn't run for 100 odd years. I knew of some staunchions south of Alamein Station, I had no idea they stretched for about one kilometre, complete with power lines.
The photo on this information board would be taken not too far away from where I was standing in the photo above. It was most likely farmland, maybe with some cows, perhaps an orchard or two and market gardens.
Through the trees I could see Sacre Coeur Girls School in Glen Iris and the Eureka tower at Southbank. I am about ten kilometres from the city.
This is the last of the staunchions.
The wires drop down into Gardiners Creek valley and disappear, I assume underground. The original train line to Waverley Road Station crossed the valley on Black Bridge. So why is there a kilometre of staunchions that have never seen a train? Clearly there were serious thoughts of extending the line when the Alamein extension was built.
From The Argus, 1947. Mr M. J. Canny, one of the Rail- ways Commissioners, said yesterday that the name of the new station had not yet been decided (Alamein). The new line might eventually be extended three-quarters of a mile to East Malvern, along the old Outer Circle route.
This photo from the State Library was taken in 1926 and shows the timber Black Bridge over Gardiners Creek valley, long after the trains ceased to operate.
....and here I am on the bridge over Gardiners Creek. A little upstream from here Scotchmans Creek joins Gardiners Creek. To the right of the visible path is the Malvern Valley Golf Course. I have seen this land underwater in the 1980s when the creek flooded. It was quite spectacular.
A billabong with an appreciative wading bird. I crossed the golf course, protected from round white missiles by high wire fencing, open at some parts.
The bridge over the Monash Freeway to East Malvern Station is quite new. Note it is walled in over the freeway to prevent the youf dropping things on cars passing by below.
Ramps lead down to the station platform.
No one knows what a freeway looks like, so here is a photo. After crossing the bridge, I became a little confused as there seemed to be two linear parks. I followed the wider one, but I discovered something later that may be relevant as to why there are two linear parks and which the train may have run along.
I reached Waverley Road. In the 1980s this was rough and open parkland along where the Outer Circle Line ran. The then City of Malvern decided to turn it into an urban forest. Thirty years later, that is exactly what is there. I remember our dog running through the newly planted park with its many native bushes. It now feels very much like Australian bushland.
I wasn't aware of this, but within the Urban Forest are the embankments for platforms of the Waverley Road Station. I think I worked out where they were. A duck doesn't mind that this billabong water is a bit murky.
T'was very peaceful and pleasing to see that dog walkers kept their pets on leashes so as to not scare any wildlife.
I crossed the 'Great Three Chain' Dandenong Road from the City of Stonnington to the City of Glen Eira and entered through this attractive rustic gateway into the last section of the Outer Circle line park. To the left across the road is the southern end of the Urban Forest and the hoardings hide an area that used to be a large car sales yard.
There was so much seating along the linear park from City of Booroodara, through the City of Stonnnington into the City of Glen Eira, but very very few seats in the shade. Why? I had just come across one under a lovely shady tree, but there was a boy on his bike staring up into the tree and looking for something, right at the seat. I didn't think it would look good if sat there. Fortunately I came across this shelter and had a rest, some nibbles and a drink.
Is this not a splendid golden elm?
You can see I am back in the posh area. A very grand house peeps down on me.
I would say this house is quite new, but decorated in the Federation Style, and very nice it is too.
Drinking fountains now often have a dog drinking tap, but mostly not a bowl below. This one is very well done.
A play area for children but there was a girl sitting in part of it, thus again a child in the way of a better photo.
Here I am at the end of my journey, roughly near where the Outer Circle line joined the now Pakenham and Gippsland line.
Up the ramp to the modest Hughesdale Station and off home.
I am very excited to learn via Jayne, that a documentary on the Outer Circle Line is in production. I can't wait.