Four a.m. is a bleak enough time to start the day; but Lee Stacey's been?
Four a.m. is a bleak enough time to start the day; but Lee Stacey's been up an hour getting breakfast today. An early start is essential -- it's lamb train day and the Stacey Lamb Train is an important annual event in the Quirading Shire, east of Perth.
Upward of forty-men will arrive through the day to help with the mustering and drafting.
The Stacey property covers 17-thousand acres and carries about 15 na 16-thousand sheep. About 15-thousand were mustered to cut-out the lambs for this year's train.
The Stacey homestead becomes the catering centre for the day with stockmen's wives lending a hand to prepare food for the man on the job. In charge here is Mrs. Les Stacey.
It's a long hard day. Seven-thousand-275 lambs were to be freighted out by evening -- a new record for the annual train.
Norman Yarran has worked on every MUSTER with Les Stacey for 22-years. This year they were to consign the one-hundred-thousandth lamb for export from the property.
By mid-day the first lambs were being loaded. As the day progressed, 66-double-deck sheep wagons would be filled.
The loading operation went on non-stop until 5:30 in the evening. It's claimed to be a world record for a single consignment for any one producer. To save time, the food prepared at the homestead was eaten by the track.
It could only be a short break until the train was on its way -- the biggest lamb train ever hauled by the Western Australian Government Railways, about on-third of a mile long.
Just 48-hours after leaving the property, for Robbs Jetty near Fremantle on the coast, the beasts were slaughtered and processed -- being loaded for shipment to the United Kingdom.
It was the end for another year to the Stacey Lamb Train story.