Waitakere Tramline: The Dam Tram

Waitakere Tramline: The Dam Tram

But what’s really cool about the Waitakere dam, perched up in the Waitakere Ranges, is its tramline.

Built in the early 1900s, the tramline’s sole purpose was to haul in materials used to construct the Waitakere dam. It took four years to build that dam. The result: a solidly built, but garishly ugly, concrete structure.

It would have once stood out like a big fat pimple on the otherwise perfect face of this beautiful rainforest. But, nature has doused that blemish with native foliage, and today, the dam is edged in a picturesque afro of greenery.

The original tram tracks are still there, and on them, The Dam Tram. A Thomas the Tank Engine look-alike, it was purpose-built in the 70s, it’s undergone a few overhauls over the last three decades, but it’s still chugging along.

A trip on The Dam Tram takes paying public for a bush-brushed ride through tunnels, over bridges and viaducts, and right to the doorstep of glow worm and weta caves. It’s a great ride—and a fantastic introduction to the remarkable rainforest growing right on Auckland’s doorstep.

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Content updated: 28/02/2020 18:22

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