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Matheran - 2005

Matheran - 2005
Prakash Tendulkar


I visited Matheran in late February 2005. As I reached platform # 4 at Dadar station, Udyan Express toward Bangalore was entering in. Since I had IndRail pass, I went to AC2 coach and asked TTE if there is a room. He looked at me, a guy wearing shorts and T-shirt in winter, trying to check if there is a seat available in AC2 without showing a ticket and without carrying any  baggage. He thought he dealing with a nut.

Nevertheless, he showed me a seat. After the train started, he came and asked me about my destination. "Karjat" was the answer. Now he was convinced that I was a "Real Nut". Why would a sane person going to Karjat (which is a next technical halt) board Udyan Express going to Bangalore?

I showed him my IndRail pass. He said, he cannot make a reservation for Karjat in this train. I understood his dilemma. I suggested that he make a reservation up to Bangalore but let me get down at Karjat. 

Finally, he gave up. He let me travel without any formal reservation and get down at Karjat. From Karjat, I reached Neral by EMU.

Train to Matheran was on the platform minus the locomotive. 

Toy_Loco2.jpg (95927 bytes)  Toy_Loco.jpg (64033 bytes)  Couplers.jpg (49992 bytes)  The "Toy" loco came in from loco shed and coupled to train.

Goods.jpg (41960 bytes)  Goods2.jpg (26120 bytes)  Goods3.jpg (16013 bytes)  Inventory on adjacent track showed various stock used for carrying cargo.

Coach.jpg (32356 bytes)  Coach2.jpg (27175 bytes)  Second and First class coaches.

Mini_Cargo.jpg (49982 bytes)  Parcel van carries one and half ton of cargo.

Label.jpg (46504 bytes)  Warning3.jpg (55588 bytes)  Manufacturer's label and warning in coach.

Airbrake.jpg (74292 bytes)  Many of the coaches have air brake mechanism for a few years now. I am not sure if CR plans to use air brakes in future or not. (Labor Union issues due to lay off of brakes men standing between coaches???)

Incoming2.jpg (55754 bytes)  Incoming.jpg (59421 bytes)  On the way, we met UP train to Neral descending the slope. The gradient sign shows 1:20, i.e. 5% grade.

RR_Crossing.jpg (74672 bytes)  There are 4 manned RR crossings plus a tunnel.  Tunnel.jpg (14651 bytes)

Fort.jpg (62425 bytes)  TTE pointed towards remnants of fortress by Shivaji Maharaj. Although I am not new to Matheran, I had failed to notice it before.

Ganesha.jpg (68441 bytes)  He also showed me a rock that resembles Lord Ganesha. It is in the process of being painted.

Jackfruit.jpg (30939 bytes)  Baby jackfruit.

Founders.jpg (38822 bytes)  Aman_Lodge.jpg (53607 bytes)  Pioneers of Matheran Light Railway and station by their ancient home.

RR.jpg (68142 bytes)  RR3.jpg (65942 bytes)  RR2.jpg (46709 bytes)  "Rehabilitated" Loco # 501.

MQ.jpg (59500 bytes)  MQ2.jpg (88533 bytes)  MQ3.jpg (79540 bytes)  "Matheran Queen", a working steam loco.

NDM1A.jpg (49737 bytes)  NDM1B.jpg (73979 bytes)  NDM1C.jpg (60710 bytes)  Skeletons of other two NDM1 locos (although # 503 appears on both of them).

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