Philden's Top Links

Here's a snapshot of Philden's favourites from the wide, wide world of web

Since 2011, I've been sharing my Railway Reminiscing stories over on my author blog at From growing up in Gosford, to chasing trains up Ardglen bank, you can enjoy the 100 free articles I have written on the railway stations and forgotten lines that I have explored Down Under. There's even an account of my railcruising adventure in Rotorua, New Zealand.


I've come across hundreds of great model railway blogs on the internet, but listing too many here causes search engines to mistake this site as spam and omit my blog from their search results. So to avoid that happening again, here are my all-time 30 favourite blogs in order of the date I first added them from fellow modellers around the world...

If you like trains, but aren't in the mood to model, (not as in the pirouetting in stilettos type modelling, but the type more familiar to model railroaders), then YouTube might just be the place to scratch that itch and get your train fix. I know I'm guilty of wasting hours on a Saturday night watching one train clip after another. So from Santa Monica to Sydney, here is my current line-up of top train time wasters from YouTubeLand!

  • Starting on the shores of Southern California comes this amazing drone footage taken by Stephen M Conroy of an Amtrak train racing along the cliffs near Jalama Beach. I've yet to make it over to The States, but some Amtrak adventures such as these are high on my bucket list. Great scenery and a great Johnny Cash soundtrack to boot!

  • Next stop is the Rocky Mountains, and a grand piano being played from the flatcar of a passing train! My wife is a huge fan of the Piano Guys, and the music in this video, channelling both Vivaldi and the Bourne Identity soundtrack, is as amazing as the scenery the train passes through. Watching pianist Jon Schmidt and cellist Steven Sharp Nelson is a Saturday night in itself!

  • Detouring by Columbia, Maryland USA, next up is the amazing model railroad of Howard Zane. This Barcroft TV YouTube clip estimates Howard's lifelong scratch-built masterpiece at a million dollars. I think it serves as a good measuring stick for us more humble modellers on smaller budgets to justify our model railway spending to our partners.

  • Meanwhile from north in Canada comes this clip from YouTuber's SantaFe5811 on this stunning section of riverside track through the Golden Campgrounds on Canadian Pacific's Kicking Horse Pass. Love the scenery, and the sound of those big GE's.

  • Moving over to the United Kingdom, and this Great Western Railway OO scale layout was actually built by Aussie Gavin Thrum and filmed by YouTuber Peter Lucas of Adelaide. There's something about the quaintness and history of England's Big Four Railways between the war years that makes me consider a switch to British modelling every time I see a layout such as this. Working my way through all 8 seasons of Michael Portillo's Great British Railway Journeys hasn't made the bug go away either! But an N scale steam era layout like this sitting beneath Philden? That would just look brilliant!

  • Then its across to the shores of Australia, where Phill from STV Sydney Train Vlog Videos has somewhat of a cult following. This clip is Vlog number 1,127 taken from Wondabyne on the Hawkesbury River north of Sydney. Wondabyne is of course a request stop station in the middle of nowhere. You can only get there by train or boat! When you're done, there's always your pick of more than 1,000 of Phill's other YouTube clips.

  • And to cap it all off in Sydney, there's the awesome high speed driver's cab rides posted by Sydney Trains Cab Videos. There's over 100 clips posted by Sydney's mysterious dance-club fuelled train driver. This one takes you from Sydney, across the Harbour Bridge and onto Hornsby in just 7 minutes! Kudos my friend, and try not to bust-a-move.

Watch this space as I add more cool clips from YouTubeLand...

Thanks for visiting Philden!