Image by Amanda Slater (Flickr) – Cook SA
Most people don’t know that Pacific National effectively own and runs a ghost-town. But the town of Cook is more than just a quirky outpost in the middle of the Nullarbor.
- The nearest town, Eucla, is over 200km to the west of Cook
- It is considered the half-way point across the Nullarbor between Port Augusta and Kalgoorlie; both over 800km away!
- The town is home to 6 residents, and the temporary home for Pacific National crews from Port Augusta and Kalgoorlie
- It’s exactly 100 years old – and once had a school, hospital and telephone exchange
- The town is made up of a few houses, large barracks for the visiting Pacific National crews, a fuel and water farm, the original gaol
- Residents are the full-time caretakers of the barracks for Pacific National crews – they manage the cleaning, repairs, maintenance, and the water and fuel farms
- The town relies on the trains going through to bring it food and drink, and all crews have to bring their foodstuff for the duration of their stay – which can be up to 4 days
But things are looking up for our little town… Great Southern Rail is turning the abandoned buildings of Cook into a walking tour – each with its own plaque and story. As the Indian Pacific has to stop in the town, it’s a great opportunity to get people interested in its history!