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The fact that we see (as in Clapham Junction, Malta) many parallel and close tracks following the same path and converging/ diverging at common points is a clear indication they were going from same point A to same point B, and the fact they are so numerous, visibly more than necessary, is an indication that the effect of soft limestone wear by transport of heavy loads obliged to save rails and to minimize the passages.

Or it made it necessary to regularly create new close and parallel rails in case of too important depth in formers. Note that it was also possible to fill in the bottom of rails with gravels, in flat and horizontal zones, to delay the wear.

In many cases, you have the feeling that a rails path was modified to connect to another one, in order to connect in a new pair of rails by abandoning a part of the former.
_

Optimized paths could have been defined considering slopes, distance and location of "point A" and "point B". Then, it was not a big deal to engrave a line of passage to be followed for the first transportations, so creating initial tracks to be followed afterwards. Of course, such a process would be impossible on the totally disturbed terrain we see today, but long, long ago, the soil must have been smooth and much less damaged by erosion (and catastrophes, think of boulders hurled on ground by giant waves).

I live in a limestone region, with numerous stones just below ground in my garden. When necessary, it's relatively easy to break them with a pickaxe, and to reshape some border stones with a small (but strong) hoe.
Hard stone neolithic tools could do the job on soft limestone (of course, not the same story on granitic stones).

You proposed a part of this explanation with your examples of real railways, Clapham Junction in London and old fashioned signal box. Clapham junction in Malta looks random at first sight and at human eyes height, but walking around the zone and checking on aerial views makes you realize that there was here a sort of deliberate planning to fulfill organization needs.

Elsewhere, I don't know.

Michel Demaria (retired engineer, France)

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Subject Views Written By Posted
Clapham Junction Malta 2081 Rstevens1701 16-Oct-17 15:26
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 583 Origyptian 16-Oct-17 18:45
this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 442 Racho 16-Oct-17 22:45
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 623 Tsurugi 17-Oct-17 04:55
Not carts. 465 Barbelo 17-Oct-17 07:14
Re: Not carts. 401 Origyptian 17-Oct-17 15:00
Re: Not carts. 368 Barbelo 17-Oct-17 20:17
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 374 Jon Ellison 17-Oct-17 07:28
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 371 Jon Ellison 17-Oct-17 08:29
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 323 Origyptian 17-Oct-17 15:08
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 350 Jon Ellison 17-Oct-17 16:56
ships on land 354 molder 17-Oct-17 22:43
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 313 molder 18-Oct-17 12:22
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 354 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 13:00
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 330 Jon Ellison 18-Oct-17 17:23
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 347 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 18:26
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 340 Jon Ellison 18-Oct-17 19:01
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 287 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 03:44
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 274 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 05:36
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 398 molder 08-Nov-17 10:34
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 251 Tsurugi 09-Nov-17 05:55
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 301 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 01:53
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 265 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 03:47
Black Tracks 358 Barbelo 19-Oct-17 01:59
Re: Black Tracks 365 randompHactor 19-Oct-17 02:16
Re: Black Tracks 459 Barbelo 21-Oct-17 00:20
Re: Black Tracks 250 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 03:51
Turkey Tracks 354 Barbelo 17-Oct-17 22:51
Re: Turkey Tracks 379 Origyptian 17-Oct-17 23:47
Re: Turkey Tracks 304 Barbelo 18-Oct-17 02:03
Re: Turkey Tracks 348 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 02:07
Re: Turkey Tracks 362 Barbelo 18-Oct-17 03:00
Re: Turkey Tracks 329 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 04:22
Re: Turkey Tracks 403 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 05:58
Re: Turkey Tracks 2 405 Barbelo 18-Oct-17 23:54
Re: Turkey Tracks 2 307 Jon Ellison 19-Oct-17 01:03
Re: Turkey Tracks 2 307 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 19:00
Re: Turkey Tracks 242 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 04:07
Re: Turkey Tracks 260 Barbelo 07-Nov-17 05:00
Re: Turkey Tracks 287 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 18:47
Re: Turkey Tracks 293 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 19:15
Re: Turkey Tracks 257 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 19:20
Re: Turkey Tracks 264 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 20:03
Re: Turkey Tracks 292 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 20:12
Re: Turkey Tracks 357 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 20:34
Re: Turkey Tracks 296 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 21:21
Re: Turkey Tracks 284 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 22:44
Re: Turkey Tracks 260 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 22:51
Re: Turkey Tracks 433 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 22:58
Re: Turkey Tracks 283 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 23:52
Re: Turkey Tracks 364 Tsurugi 08-Nov-17 08:38
Re: Turkey Tracks 324 Jon Ellison 08-Nov-17 09:58
Re: Turkey Tracks 279 Tsurugi 09-Nov-17 02:40
Re: Turkey Tracks 462 Jon Ellison 09-Nov-17 08:08
Re: Turkey Tracks 352 Tsurugi 25-Nov-17 08:10
Re: Turkey Tracks 293 Mike D 26-Nov-17 16:57
Re: Turkey Tracks 246 Jon Ellison 26-Nov-17 18:08
Re: Turkey Tracks 334 Mike D 27-Nov-17 09:47
Re: Turkey Tracks 305 Tsurugi 08-Nov-17 08:16
Re: Turkey Tracks 272 Barbelo 07-Nov-17 21:26
Re: Turkey Tracks 365 Tsurugi 08-Nov-17 08:46
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 275 Anonymous User 07-Nov-17 22:07
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 430 Mike D 25-Nov-17 13:44
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 290 molder 25-Nov-17 20:51
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 291 Mike D 26-Nov-17 12:46
The Diolkos 270 molder 26-Nov-17 21:36
Re: The Diolkos 257 Mike D 27-Nov-17 10:03
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 326 Mike D 26-Nov-17 13:15
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 266 Tsurugi 27-Nov-17 09:40
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 282 Mike D 27-Nov-17 10:40
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 297 Jon Ellison 27-Nov-17 11:07
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 327 Mike D 27-Nov-17 16:27
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 278 Jon Ellison 27-Nov-17 18:32
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 270 Mike D 28-Nov-17 10:05
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 264 Jon Ellison 28-Nov-17 11:03
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 295 Mike D 28-Nov-17 11:09
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 278 Jon Ellison 28-Nov-17 13:43
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 339 Mike D 28-Nov-17 14:55
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 223 Origyptian 28-Nov-17 16:05
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 273 Mike D 28-Nov-17 18:22
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 260 Origyptian 29-Nov-17 03:16
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 383 Mike D 29-Nov-17 09:54
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 325 Origyptian 29-Nov-17 15:06
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 226 Mike D 30-Nov-17 11:25
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 255 Jon Ellison 30-Nov-17 12:41
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 224 Origyptian 30-Nov-17 13:56
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 313 Mike D 30-Nov-17 14:11
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 438 Origyptian 30-Nov-17 15:32
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 285 Origyptian 28-Nov-17 15:49
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 252 Mike D 28-Nov-17 18:28
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 330 Tsurugi 28-Nov-17 04:50
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 291 Mike D 28-Nov-17 10:46
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 249 Origyptian 27-Nov-17 15:48
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 424 Mike D 27-Nov-17 16:40
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 263 Origyptian 28-Nov-17 05:35
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 301 Mike D 28-Nov-17 09:50
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 243 Origyptian 28-Nov-17 15:34
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 302 Mike D 29-Nov-17 18:23
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 239 Origyptian 30-Nov-17 05:15
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 269 Tsurugi 28-Nov-17 05:09
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 283 Mike D 28-Nov-17 09:44
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 308 Tsurugi 28-Nov-17 18:18
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 609 Audrey 28-Nov-17 03:14
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 298 Mike D 28-Nov-17 09:39
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 297 Tsurugi 28-Nov-17 18:30
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 280 molder 28-Nov-17 21:35
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 533 molder 18-Nov-17 22:20
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 319 Mike D 23-Nov-17 21:35
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 282 Mike D 23-Nov-17 21:46
Re: Chariot Tracks on The Streets of Pompeii 298 molder 30-Nov-17 05:22
Re: Chariot Tracks on The Streets of Pompeii 331 Mike D 30-Nov-17 10:59


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