Saturday, 3 March 2012
No.40 Take a ride on a Steam Train
Well, if you are going to do a challenge, you need to do it properly. So what better way to enjoy a trip on a steam train than to follow in the footsteps of Harry Potter and get off at the bewitching Hogsmead Station (also known in real life as Goathland Station on the North Yorkshire Moors railway).
My adventure started with a visit to the fishing town of Whitby. Whitby is seaside town, port and civil parish in the Scarborough borough of North Yorkshire, England.
The town of Whitby and it's abbey high on the cliffs provided the inspiration for Bram Stoker's "Dracula". It has been said that Dracula may even be buried in St Mary's churchyard beside the Abbey.
One one sunny morning I walked to the station and booked my steam train ticket and waited eagerly for the train to arrive. Before long I heard the "Chuff chuff chuff" of the engine and saw a funnel of steam appearing over the tops of the trees in the distance. The excitement grew! Soon I was on the train and sat on the one of the old leather seats, and the journey began.
There is something so magical about riding on a steam train. I am not sure if it is the smell from the smoke, the noise of the whistle when it blows, or even the chugging of the carriages over the tracks. Sitting watching the world trundle past outside was so hypnotising.
The journey lasted about 30 minutes and my excitement grew as I knew I was approaching "Hogsmead Station". Alright, I know that only exists in J.K.Rowling's books but in my mind, that was where I was heading for. I was really surprised when I arrived at the station and looked out of the window to see that it was as magical as I had imagined. Little stone buildings, old signs and people dressed in old uniforms. It really did feel like Hogsmead.
I climbed off the train and wandered along the station, absorbing the sounds and the sights. A true piece of magic indeed! What a way to enjoy a stream train journey, and what a way to cross off another challenge on my list of 40 things.
Another pleasant surprise was that there was more to Goathland than I had expected. A very short walk away from the station was a quaint little village that is better known as Aidensfield in the log running British TV series "Heartbeat"
One more challange can now be crossed of the list!