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Denniston and
Conn's Creek
 
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  HOME  : Railways : Ghost Railways : Denniston and Conn's Creek
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Some of the images can be clicked on to enlarge.  Click here for the South Island map.
I have joined these two locations on one page because, well, I felt like it.  And they both start with 'R'.
This is a very rough diagram of the Incline.  So sue me, I'm not an artist!  If this image is not easily viewable, click on it for a larger version.  The lettered arrows are referred to in the photo's below.  Note that the track layout has been simplified for clarity.   There is an excellent track plan on a plinth at the Conn's creek end of the incline if you want a more accurate plan.
F13 at Ferrymead   This is view 'A' in the diagram above.  It looks down on to the work area at the top of the incline.   This whole area was covered in very large buildings.  The railway track plummeted off just in the right hand side of the small hill smack in the middle, where the 'Q' wagon waits to take it's last plunge.  The structure just to the left of the white car is the foundation for the brake drum building.
  The view down the incline (B).    Yes, they are clouds down there!  In the original photo you can just make out the track area of Middle Brake (a brown area in the bush).  This thing is unbelievably steep! The vista out to the coast is superb, I love the West Coast. .
W192, Kaiapoi

 

  Ja1250 and J1211 crossing Rough Creek, Arthur's Pass, New Zealand
View 'C' looks back up from just over the start of the incline.  That hill in the background was covered by some very large buildings.  Note the railway sleepers still embedded in the ground. This Q wagon has been placed here since my last visit in 1999. Somebody is looking after the area and there are lots of information boards around the place.
This is the view from on top of the brake drum building's foundations, looking towards the incline. The cloud rolls in, then rolls away, this is a magical place.
 

J1211 at Rolleston

  Ka942 over Kowhai viaduct Lots of big wheels - these things were at least three times my height. They have been restored and mounted on the plinths since my last visit.
  Photo 'D' shows the two 'Q' class hopper wagons.  The hopper part was lifted off the base of the wagon to load the coal onto the waiting ships at Westport.  The Q class was made up of about 5 sub-classes.
Ka942, Kowhai Viaduct
  Ab718

Photo 'E' shows the road back, and the scene up the Coast to Westport.  It was raining lightly when we were there (late December 2003) but the weather just adds to the mood of this beautiful place.  You can just make out Westport in this shot.

  This is the view from Conn's Creek, the incline looks like a track going up the hill beside the remains of the original crane. There's still pieces of steel cable lying around, and some railway tracks or sleepers are visible further up the incline (not shown in this picture).
Ka942, Kowhai Viaduct
  Ab718

Same two Q's but a better picture. I think the Denniston Incline and Conn's Creek branch are very beautiful, well worth visiting even if you're not interested old mining junk and railway remains. A very steep drive up to Denniston but well worth it, no substantial walking so the mobility impaired would get a lot out of this area too.

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  (c) Copyright Brian Greenwood 2008