Yesterday our contractor Steve and two volunteer dumper drivers started bringing in ballast to Broadway north. This is the 350m long stretch from the end of the platforms, to our northern boundary at Springfield Lane.
Due to a camera failure, you didn't get a report, but the battery has now been spoken to sharply and is back in service, so here is two in one. Yesterday we shuttled up 150 tons, and this morning a further supply of new ballast had been delivered to the 'car park', so we were ready to attack a second day.
First, find your dumper. I left it here somewhere last night, right?
Down in the 'car park' another 6 loads of ballast were delivered first thing, and we had a 360 going with a big bucket, so we loaded quickly.
After spending an hour covering the two most hindersome catchpits with steel plates, the sun had come out and it was a glorious day.
Two dumpers ran up and down, with a long 'single track' section down the middle as only half the trackbed was made available between the platforms. Luckily we had 'passing loops' at each end, and knew each other's rhythms.
Steve's instructions were to get it down there; he would sort out the levels.
From this picture you can see that we were quite busy yesterday, as these piles have so far had only two drops added to them today (the whiter ones nearer the camera).
In between times, Steve also started bringing up the ex Laverton Loop rail, which will be laid at Broadway north in the form of a siding and a headshunt. Unfortunately the JCB suffered a burst hydraulic pipe yesterday, so for the time being you'll have to content yourselves with this single pair. More rail, and a pair of buffer stops, will come up in the next few days - the burst pipe has now been replaced.
Running a dumper without any form of suspension up and down a rutted and potholed trackbed is very bouncy indeed, and all the shocks make your teeth want to fall out. One of the dumper drivers brought in a thick cushion in a plastic bag. It seemed to do the trick for him, as he brought it back again today.
After lunch, with all ballast supplies for the day ferried in, Steve set off to level the piles dropped yesterday and today, about 280 tons in all.
After a while, Steve requested the assistance of one dumper, to move an excess to an area of not quite enough.
If you enlarge the picture, you can see more clearly how the whole Broadway site is on a curve, between Pry Lane bridge and the camera.
With all that sunshine today, we can't complain about the mud and the rain any more, but now we can complain of the DUST !