Tagged With extreme commuting

Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.

One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.


The fourth stage in my Extreme Commuting challenge to visit all the outlying locations on the Sydney Trains network takes me to two cities in the south: Bomaderry (Nowra) via Kiama and Port Kembla. Services to these locations are much more frequent than some of the more remote places I've been visiting, yet what this trip overwhelmingly reminds me of is that when it comes to train lines in more remote locations, passengers are rarely the first priority.


Think Bathurst and you think Mount Panorama and bogans in hotted-up V8s. But Bathurst has a train station too, and a big issue in the 2011 NSW state election was demands from locals that a commuter service was added to the once-a-day Dubbo XPT service and occasional strange buses that already existed. So now there's a train. But is anyone using it? I'm experimenting with extreme commuting all this week, so I had to find out.


It's not unusual to spend an hour travelling to work and the same heading home. But what about the extreme commuters: the people who are prepared to spend three hours or more just to get to their jobs? Over January, I've been testing that out by journeying to the furthest extremes of the Sydney train network. Welcome to the land that timetables forgot.