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Dwellingup Forest Railway

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Published July 18th 2012


When my son first started to talk we all played the "what the heckaroo is he trying to say?" game with a glowing delight that comes with the joyous novelty of a first born child.

There was however one word that to this day continues to perplex us. "Nanoo". Instantly one's mind is flooded in hazy flashbacks of Robin Williams sporting an ill-fitting suit of red and silver lycra, though alas, this was not his inspiration.

The mystery continued until we realised he would go into a happy "Nanoo" hysteria every time "Thomas the tank" would come on tv. At first it was cute and unique, until the word replaced all words and was all he spoke. Yes, I can proudly say my son is fluent in Nanoonese. Yay, oh the talent!

Eventually the nanoo-mania settled down, though my son was adamant that neither "Thomas" nor "Train" was the correct term at all because of course, it was Nanoo. He could not be swayed.

Enter the Dwellingup Forest Train. What better way to squash a childs imaginative creations than a fun filled day out to lovingly prove him wrong.



The 8km tour started at Dwellingup Station where we boarded for our journey. As we passed the old mill site and timber railways, an informative commentary played overhead, with interesting facts and stories about the history of saw milling in Western Australia and of the railway itself.





Soon the train came to the end of the line and there was a 25minute stop off where passengers could purchase light refreshments from the little shop on board and get out and stretch their legs and take in the scenery.



We opted to take a walk around the Etmilyn forest trail which was a refreshing dose of foresty goodness. We took the 3 year old and an infant and there seemed to be a few "senior" citz having a go so the terrain is quite friendly to those of average fitness.





After a bit of a chin wag to the lovely train driving volunteers about their upcoming cruise trip (most of them are retired and do it out of the labour of love!) we were back on the train and meandering through the beautiful Jarrah forest once more.


I watched my son leaning his head on his arms quietly taking in the landscape, not a tv, iPod or computer in sight and had a positive parenting moment.

Until someone saw an emu and then with mischievous speed the ant-pants were on and thus began half an hour of seat swapping, lap squashing, "I can't see it" "Where is he Daddy?" "Where did he go Mummy?" harassing madness!



I can happily report that after this very eventful trip he called a train a train and reserved his "Nanoo" talk exclusively for saying goodnight to his stuffed railway friend.



This really was a lovely afternoon out. It was kid friendly and they let me take the pram on without any problems. We went in the warmer months, but I'm sure if you rug up, the visual spectacular would be most rewarding when the forest is all lush and green.
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Why? Because trains in the forest are cool
When: 10:30 & 2:30 Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays, Tuesdays & Thursdays during school holidays
Phone: 0862781111
Where: Hotham Valley Railway Dwellingup
Cost: Adults - $16 Child (2-16years) $12 Littlies (upto 2years) $3
Your Comment
You must have had so much fun...thanks for a great article.
by GilliansCamera (score: 2|333) 1950 days ago
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