One of the last of the big, black steam engines -- No 3801 -- will leave Sydney on a sentimental symbolic journey across Australia to Perth today, carrying 130 enthusiastic steam buffs.
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Background: One of the last of the big, black steam engines -- No 3801 -- will leave Sydney on a sentimental symbolic journey across Australia to Perth today, carrying 130 enthusiastic steam buffs.
These aficionados want to relive the glorious, grand era of steam for just there more weeks and they have paid $300 each for the privilege.
The Western Endeavour -- specially named for the occasion -- will pull 8 sleeping cars, a lounge car and & dining car full of train lovers, including 25 from England five from the United States a representative of Train magazine a South African, and five New Zealanders.
The 3801 is a 38 class locomotive, built in 1943. The "father of the 38s," Mr Harold Young, the railway's chief mechanical engineer at the time, will travel with it.
It will carry a scroll from the Lord Mayor of Sydney to the Lord Mayor of Perth inviting citizens of Perth to attend the Sydney Waratah Festival.
Its journey will be the first and last made across Australia by a steam engine.
It will travel on the 2461-mile standard gauge track from Sydney to Perth by way of Broken Hill and will be assisted as for as Port Augusta, South Australia, by a sister engine, 3813.
After their journeys, 3801 and 3813 will be cleaned and polished and taken to the Rail Transport Museum in Sydney.
They will be preserved so that other people can at least dream about the days when they could stick their heads out of a speeding train's window and listen to the talk of the train on the tracks.