After two days of train travel, we were well and truly relaxed. The vastness of the Nullarbor Plain was boggling.


On the longest straight stretch of railway line in the world (478 kilometres) we suddenly saw signs of life.


We had arrived at the town of Cook, the last outpost before crossing into Western Australia.


The street sign didn’t mention that Perth is 1,500km and Sydney nearly twice that distance.


Established in 1917 when the railway was built, Cook was once a thriving town with a school, hospital, golf course and shops. The railways were privatised in 1997 and there is now a permanent population of four who remain to service the trains that pass through. We had some time to stroll around the town, the abandoned buildings are sadly neglected.

The houses


had some interesting garden ornaments


and the paths and parks had been maintained.


These two old gaol cells didn’t look very comfortable,

16.old gaol cells

I think you would soon be deep fried in the desert heat

and the thunderbox looked a little worse for wear.


In 1982, 600 trees were planted around the town, the event commemorated in stone.

There was more of Cook to discover but it was time to board the train and continue across the Nullarbor to Western Australia.


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