Part 3 : Malang and Sidoarjo

In Malang, there are two sugar mills that still remain in operation until today, and those are Kebon Agung Sugar Mill (owned by PTPN X, a state owned company) and Krebet Sugar Mill (owned by PT. Rajawali Nusantara Indonesia, a private owned company). 

Kebon Agung last used their narrow gauge railway lines in 2002. After 2002 milling season was over, all the narrow gauge railways were all ripped up and covered in paving. What was once a huge siding to store all the lorry wagons, now has become a huge parking space for all the cane trucks. The weighbridge that used to function to weigh the canes transported in lorries, has now changed to weighbridge for the trucks. The engine shed still remains however, and it is in a sad state. Part of the shed has been torn down to create more space for the trucks to park. Most of the locos are still stored inside the shed, apart from two of the steam ones which are dumped just outside the shed. And the chimney cover from the Henschel No. 4 0-8-0T steam loco has been taken off and used as a water duct for the tank. All the other locos stored in the shed seemed to be in good working order, but since there are no narrow gauge tracks for them to run on, the locos are converted into storage space to store all the books and other documents owned by the sugar mill. The shed foreman is still there however, looking after the locos and all the documents in case any of them got taken away or stolen. So I managed to peek inside, and checked out the conditions of the locos.

Kebon Agung Sugar Mill's engine shed, the back view. This is the only remains of Kebon Agung's narrow gauge railway lines. The rest have been covered in pavings. Seen on the top left of the photo, is the chimney cover that has been taken off from No. 4 Henschel 0-8-0T steam loco and used as an inlet water duct for the water tank. The other side of the engine shed (not shown in the photo) has been torn down to make more space to park the trucks.
It's been a while since I came back to Kebon Agung, and when I came back in 2014, there were news that they were having a loco shed 'clearance'. The mill put up a local advert on the internet stating that all their locos were up for sale. It was then up to the buyers what they would do with the locos. By this time, one by one of the locos were scattered all over Malang mostly. Some were bought by a nearby transport museum in Batu, some were bought by a hotel owner and left dumped and displayed outside the hotel, and a couple were scrapped. So here are the latest news from 2014 to see what happened to some of them.

The two identical diesel locos, C6 and C7, both were built by Schoema with a 0-6-0 4wDM wheel arrangement, were the only ones that were still left in the shed back in 2014. By 2015, the C7 was scrapped by a local metal scrapman. The C6 however had a better fate as it eventually was also bought by a local transport museum, and now it is displayed on the entrance of the transport museum in Batu.

The last one here is a B2 O&K diesel loco, somehow it is left and about to be repainted, located outside a local car showroom and garage just around 1 km South of the Bululawang Market in South of Malang, East Java. I've not been here since, so only God knows what happened to it.
Since there are no more narrow gauge lines left in Kebon Agung Sugar Mill, my attention was moved towards the Krebet Sugar Mill. Krebet Sugar Mill used to have many narrow gauge lines. During the 2011 milling season, there were 2 remaining, and the rest were unused. One that goes out from the front of the mill, and the other one goes out from the side of the mill. But in 2012 milling season, the one that goes out from the side of the mill was not used anymore. So this means that the only field line left was the main field line that goes out from the front of the mill. This line goes towards Gading village district and into Gondanglegi Cane Siding, a siding where all the canes are stored temporarily before being brought back into the mill. I met and had a chat with the local farmers and other employees of Krebet Sugar Mill, they kept saying that 2011 was supposed to be the last year that Krebet’s narrow gauge field line was in operation. They wanted to move on to trucks and other road vehicles for efficiency reasons (which I do not see where and how), but they kept delaying their plans. So during 2012 milling season, they still used their one and only narrow gauge field line. However, the plan of scrapping the narrow gauge railways slowly became materialized in 2013, when Krebet cut back the majority of their one and only field line that remained. By then, the Gondanglegi siding was free from rails whatsoever. By 2014, it only got worse. Only the North line that remained. And by 2015, all the activities were confined to only a yard work. I presume the locos were also being scrapped one by one. Shame really, as they have a unique collection of diesel locos. And it's for these reasons why today I'm just not gonna be bothered with Java's narrow gauge railways anymore and decided to move on. 
The usual cattles and oxes are being used to drag the cane wagons towards deep inside the cane fields. This one was at the nearby Gading cane fields. Photo dated 2011.
In 2013, Krebet cut back the majority of their field line. Their South most field line only reached the village of Pagak, just North West of Gondanglegi. Here, the no.8 Schoema is on the way back to the mill whilst racing against the motorbike that I rode.

The no.8 Schoema that I raced from the previous photo met a no.7 on the double track section of the line. The no.7 was preparing to pick up another set of already made up cane train at Pagak. Photo dated 2013.

One of the most interesting scenes of Java's narrow gauge railways is when they go through a narrow 'kampung' housing settlement, such as this one, prior to making a turn East to enter the South West mill gate. Photo dated 2013.

So my day in Malang was up, and time for me to return home to Surabaya. But on my way back, there’s nothing wrong for me to take a ‘pit stop’ in Krembung Sugar Mill, located in South West of Sidoarjo Region. As usual, Krembung Sugar Mill does not run their field lines anymore, although many parts of their field line still remain, especially near the Krembung traditional market. The only action to see was a small Schoema diesel hauling and shunting cane trains from the outside siding, crossing a small village road and into the inside siding of the mill. Another small Schoema diesel is also on duty shunting the cane trains on the inside siding of the mill. Krembung is a very small sugar mill, and there are no steam locos remaining, not even the unused ones. In 2012, the only locos that are still in operation in Krembung Sugar Mill are the Schoema diesels, from No. 2 to No. 6. No. 1 has been torned apart, and the body is left outside the engine shed. Whilst No. 7 is permanently damaged and it is stored inside the shed. Yet when I came back in 2015, the number of diesels decreased, only the no's 2 and 4 were working. And by 2016, only one diesel was left to work, and that was the no.4. The rest, they were assisted by tractors.

P.S. I skipped Candi, Tulangan and Watutulis, the 2 nearest mills to Krembung because they had converted 100% to tractor motives and no more field workings whatsoever, hence this bares me no interest anymore.

No.4 here is waiting on the inside yard to shunt the next set of cane train to the cane table. Photo dated 2012.

No.4 again hard at work bringing the canes to the inside yard that are coming from road deliveries. Photo dated 2014.

By 2014, the only working locos were just the no.2 and no.4. The rest were either cold and damaged in the shed. Here, the no.4 is still hard at work in the road delivery crane. Also notice in the background, you can just about to see the silhouette of the Arjuno Volcano.

Next to Part 4

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