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NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/17/24 4:24 p.m.

The train had a significant scheduled layover at Martisco and I was talking with Pete and Jack and I said that I was continuing east to go home anyways, so I was going to catch them at the semaphore at Solvay and then once they hopped on Amtrak. Pete made the point that from there they would be heading dead east and the sun was setting lower in the sky, so you would be shooting directly into the sun, plus the semaphore at Solvay is only painted on one side and you would be on the wrong side. He mentioned that they were probably going to head home, but then I said that I actually wanted to get the observation car going past the semaphore, and so that would put me on the right side of the sun and the semaphore and he went "Oh, that's a terrific idea, I didn't think of that. Maybe we will go there, it's not that much farther."

Since they had a layover, I hopped in my car to go get a bottle of water and check things out down the line, and make sure my semaphore idea would work. I then was coming back at 3:00pm (scheduled departure was 3:45) and as I got near Martisco I heard the horns. My first thought was "Oh, they're doing another runby" but then I saw they were just leaving 45 minutes early. Okay. I whipped my car around and headed up to Solvay, and got there, meeting up with Pete and Jack and we got set up for my photo idea.

We're all set up, and wouldn't you know it, here comes those guys from the trip and they set up to the far right of this shot, and are aimed into the sun on the wrong side of the train and the semaphore. And then because they're there a bunch of other people get set up there too. So we're basically standing in their shot, and they didn't say anything and maybe they didn't care, but I'm curious if they were grousing. And Pete's going "What the hell are they doing? They think that's the shot? They're aimed right into the sun." So we stood our ground and got what was likely a much better shot.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/17/24 4:25 p.m.

Heading east to Syracuse by myself, I passed this LTEX leaser MP15DC sitting in Solvay. FGLK also has another MP15DC that they're leasing from GATX/GMTX as well.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/17/24 4:29 p.m.

I originally planned to get the cars going back by the Syracuse train station, since Amtrak would have taken over at Solvay Yard and be moving it with their own power. But I forgot that Syracuse has airport-style parking at their train station and I didn't feel like paying to park. So I went east to Kirkville and got set up along the old NYC Water Level Route. The lighting wasn't great, but it was still impressive to see a train of entirely vintage railcars, with modern Amtrak power, doing all of 65mph+ on the mainline. I'm so used to seeing vintage passenger cars at museums or tourist lines poking along at 15-20mph.

 

The owner of Colonial Crafts posted a photo on Facebook later on where the GPS speedometer on his phone was showing them doing 101mph near Colonie, NY.

 

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/19/24 10:10 a.m.

Some other little interesting information that I remembered about that trip;

Sometimes the AAPRCO trips use Amtrak power over the host railroad, like when they used F40PHs and P42DCs on the AAPRCO trips over the Adirondack Railway in '99 and 2017 respectively. Other times they use the host railroad's power, like the AAPRC convention on the Vermont Railway back in 2020. Apparently there was some sort of communication issue between Amtrak and FGLK and Pete Swanson said that they had followed it east Tuesday and there was a big pow-wow at Solvay because FGLK thought that Amtrak power was going to be used for the trip and Amtrak was under the impression FGLK power was going to be used. After a long discussion involving crews and management, the Amtrak P42s were unhooked and the FGLK GP38-2s were hooked up.

Also, the owner of Colonial Crafts was talking to us after the photo runby, while they were backing the train up and people were boarding, and he was saying how private rail cars have become a dwindling group due to Amtrak policy changes. He said basically after Joe Boardman retired from Amtrak in 2016, stuff started going downhill, especially with Amtrak ending charters in 2017. Amtrak will still allow private cars to be tacked on to existing trains, or they'll handle a ferry move (like this trip's Albany-Solvay moves) but they won't allow you to just charter a whole special move. And while on Amtrak, you can't have windows open, you can't ride in the vestibules, etc. Plus Amtrak has cranked the rates up and attached fees to everything. Storage at a yard? That's a fee. Hooked up to hotel power while waiting at a station? That's a fee. Need the water tanks filled? Need the waste tanks empty? Cars need to be switched? All fees. Between all that and the pandemic, he said the days of 18 car AAPRCO conventions are pretty much over, and its usually less than ten cars and it's rare that they get out. They try to do one trip, like this one, and they all go to Pittsburgh for New Year's but anything else is considered basically a pleasant surprise. Most of the cars have ended up permanently parked, or sold to tourist lines, or put on display at museums.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/19/24 10:16 a.m.

John Koslosky's video of the AAPRCO trip up the Adirondack in '17. You can see some of the same cars, including Northern Sky, Northern Dream and Promontory Point, and of course, the greater length (18 cars vs 7) and the Amtrak power being used. Part of that might have been that 18 cars is significantly longer than anything the Adirondack runs, and would have tied up most of their motive power and left them without anything to handle regular runs.

 

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/19/24 10:53 a.m.

This Saturday is the second of Reading & Northern's 2024 Iron Horse Rambles, which is from the new Nesquehoning Campus to Tunkhannock, and they released the schedule. It looks like quite a convoluted affair and I'm glad I'm riding and not chasing, since it will apparently have diesels on the head end for the move from Penobscot to Pittston Yard, and then the #2102 will be leading tender-first from Tunkhannock to Pittston on the return trip, on account of a lack of turning facilities at Tunkhannock. So, you basically can't get any photos between CP RIVER and White Haven, because the train is up in the Lehigh Gorge where there's no real access, then you'll have diesels ahead of #2102 once it gets back in the accessible area, and then on the return trip it'll be running tender-first for the first third, and then again, be basically inaccesible from White Haven back to CP RIVER. And Pete Swanson said there aren't a ton of photo opportunities on the Pittston-Tunkhannock leg either.

 

09:00 - DEPART NESQUEHONING

09:11 - Pass RIVER

09:26 - Pass INDEPENDENCE

10:02 - Pass WHITE HAVEN

10:26 - Pass CRESTWOOD - Meet PIJT-22 at CW.

10:35 - 11:19 - Stop at PENOBSCOT for water. At this time, two RBMN diesel locomotives will couple to the front of the train/steam locomotive for the downhill trip to Pittston Yard.

11:22 - Pass SOLOMONS GAP

11:34 - Pass LAUREL RUN

11:47 - Pass SEIDEL

12:02 - Pass DUPONT

12:11 - 12:21 - Stop at Pittston Yard to remove diesel locomotives.

12:28 - Pass SPRING

12:46 - Pass FALLS

13:14 - ARRIVE TUNKHANNOCK

13:15 - 15:59 - Crew will complete servicing of Steam Locomotive 2102 and will runaround the consist.

16:00 - DEPART TUNNHANNOCK

16:28 - Pass FALLS

16:46 - Pass SPRING

16:52 - 17:12 - Crew will turn Steam Locomotive 2102 on the Pittston Wye.

17:20 - Pass DUPONT

17:32 - Pass SEIDEL

17:45 - Pass LAUREL RUN

17:57 - Pass SOLOMONS GAP - Meet JTPI-22 at SG.

18:00 - 18:30 - Stop at PENOBSCOT for water.

18:38 - Pass Crestwood

19:03 - Pass WHITE HAVEN

19:38 - Pass INDEPENDENCE

19:53 - Pass RIVER

20:02 - ARRIVE NESQUEHONING

I also may have made a miscalculation myself. The schedule wasn't posted when I planned to go on this trip and take my father, and I had assumed it would be like the regular Rambles (leave at 9am, three hours transit to arrive at destination at 12, three hour layover and departure at 3pm, three hours transit back to arrive at 6pm). So, going off of that, I had gotten a hotel just for Friday night, thinking that my father and I would drive down to the area, spend the night, then drive home after the trip. With a 6:00pm return and a 4ish hour drive home that would get us home at around 10pm. Manageable. But now that I've learned they plan to get back at 8pm, and that's assuming that all the rigamarole doesn't put them even later, that would mean getting home around midnight. So now I think I'll be calling the hotel and seeing if I can extend my reservation and driving home Sunday morning.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/19/24 12:24 p.m.

I have gotten a chuckle out of people in the Friends Of Reading & Northern group on Facebook asking variations of the same question; "What time will #2102 be crossing Tunkhannock Viaduct?" "What's the best shot at Tunkhannock Viaduct?" "How do I get to Tunkhannock Viaduct?" Or there have just been some excited remarks of "I can't wait to see steam on Tunkhannock Viaduct again".

What those people don't seem to realize is that it's Tunkhannock Creek Viaduct. It crosses Tunkhannock Creek, it's not in Tunkhannock, PA. It's in Nicholson, PA, about 15 miles northeast of Tunkhannock. It's not even on the same line. R&N is using the old Lehigh Valley main line, while Tunkhannock Creek Viaduct is on Norfolk Southern on the old DL&W line. 

Some people have been trying to correct the notion, but for every person on Facebook asking that question, I'm going to guess there are a bunch that aren't. It wouldn't surprise me if there were a bunch of disappointed railfans hanging around the Viaduct all day Saturday waiting for a train that's not coming.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/19/24 3:51 p.m.

It's also just kind of weird that they're going to hook diesels to the front of the #2102 for the stretch between Penobscot and Pittston, when they could just put them between the #2102's tender and the generator car, like they do on all the #425 trips. It would save futzing about at Penobscot and Pittston and look more aesthetically pleasing. If I had to guess though, it's likely the same reason Andy Muller has #2102 shove it's train up out of Jim Thorpe by itself and pull it around the wye. I watched that last fall in the rain, and the #2102 was slipping and spinning the wheels really bad and I said "Why don't they just have the SD50s, or the MP15 down in Jim Thorpe yard, tow it up the hill?" and someone said that basically Andy Muller wants it to do everything sans diesels to prove that it can, and I guess to avoid that "The diesels are doing all the work and the steam locomotive is along for the ride" complaint. When it runs the Reading-Jim Thorpe excursions, the SD50s are present as protection power, but they follow at a distance. 

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/19/24 4:54 p.m.

 A neat in-cab video of the #2102, climbing from Jim Thorpe to Nesquehoning, with commentary as Shane Frederickson manages to prevent a near-stall situation.

 

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/20/24 12:32 p.m.

There is a historical precedent for diesels being used on the Iron Horse Rambles, dating back to the original Reading Co. 1959-1964 Iron Horse Rambles.

Often a segment of the trip would be handled by Reading's EMD FP7s, for reasons related to the size and weight of a T1. If a trip originated in Philadelphia, for example, there were concerns over the weight of a T1 on the elevated trackage in and out of Philly, so instead the FP7s would handle the run to Reading, and then the T1s would be subbed on. The Catawissa Branch was also very popular trackage for the Rambles, but the T1s often swapped out for the FP7s, due to removal of turning facilities at West Milton. The T-1 and K class were originally restricted from service between Catawissa and West Milton due to a through-girder bridge on a curve over the remains of the Pennsylvania Canal adjacent to the American Home Products plant in Milton. By the time of the Iron Horse Rambles the bridge in question had been removed but so had the turning facilities at the West Milton engine house. Ergo, no place to turn a T-1. The use of the A-B-A diesel nicely sidestepped the turning problem by having the FP7s take the train all the way to Williamsport and back, while the T-1s proceeded to Bear Run Jct., turned, and ran reverse to West Milton. Bear Run Jct. wye was a more convenient option than the wye at Gordon enginehouse or the somewhat tight wye at Shamokin Enginehouse. The Shamokin wye was tried once on an early Ramble and the powers that be reportedly vowed "never again" due to tight radii. The very last Ramble of '63 also ran entirely with the FP7s, due to extremely dry conditions. The counties were worried about wildfires and so Reading used on the FP7s for the trip, although the #2100 was on display at Reading Outer Station.

I've also seen a single (not very good) photo of a Ramble with Baldwin AS-16s helping out on the front end. Rather than using the Catawissa Branch , Reading decided to send the train to Shamokin over the Shamokin Division, so the train traveled the passenger route from Tamaqua and East Mahanoy Junction through Girardville, Ashland, and Mount Carmel Junction. To make the 2.6% grade to Locust Summit, Reading hooked two of the AS-16s, which were working in helper service at that location, ahead of the #2124 at East Mahanoy Junction and help drag the train up to Shamokin. Conversely, R&N is using diesels on the front to help get the train down the grade from Mountain Top, PA to Pittston, PA. There's no mention of picking up the diesels to go back up that grade, but I'm curious if they'll have to use the #2102's trailing truck booster engine.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/20/24 12:48 p.m.

The #2100 and #2102 on a doubleheaded Ramble from Bethlehem to West Milton, passing through Locust Summit, PA

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 9:16 a.m.

So, this weekend was the big trip aboard the R&N, from Nesquehoning north to Pittson after a southeast swing into the bottom of the Lehigh Gorge, and then northwest out of Pittston to Tunkhannock, traversing almost the entirety of the Lehigh Division.

We got to Nesquehoning Campus around 7:30am, and the #2102 was there and waiting, attached to a consist of freshly-painted cars (they repainted all the faded old open-window coaches at Nesquehoning this spring). No dome cars in the consist though, oddly. I wonder if there were tunnel clearance issues at Rockport Tunnel or White Haven Tunnel. Also, no King Coal round-end observation car. We saw that later in the day on the tail end of PIJT, and our train was using Glen Onoko Club, an old DL&W Subscription Club Car MU trailer that Reading & Northern converted to an open-platform observation car.

The #2102, sitting at NQ, all shined up. My father had never seen the #2102 in person (he's seen and ridden behind the #425) and was pretty impressed. I don't love how the T-1s look, but they are an impressive machine when they're running. 

Further adding to people's disappointment was the fact that the #2102 had been moved up in the middle of the day on Friday from Port Clinton and then stashed down at Jim Thorpe Yard, further eliminating another aspect of the chase from Port Clinton to Nesquehoning.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 9:17 a.m.

As a reminder, this was a combination 65th birthday/retirement/Father's Day gift for my father. A helpful railfan took this photo of us together in front of the #2102

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 10:17 a.m.

We got aboard the very first open-window coach behind the generator car. I wanted to hear the #2102 working the grade, and I knew that it's a steady hill from basically Jim Thorpe Junction to Penobscot. The grade from Pittston to Penobscot on the return trip was even steeper but they were turning the engine at Pittston, not the whole train, and all the Crown Class cars were at the other end, so you really couldn't get close to the front of the train, even if you moved to the rearmost Standard Class car on the return trip.

Swinging around Hetchel's Curve in the Lehigh Gorge. I wanted to take video of this segment, but the people in the two window kept popping out in front of my camera, and so I just settled for a couple pics instead.

Even with 17 cars, all fully loaded, and a steady grade with lots of curves, the #2102 never lost her footing or seemed to have any trouble. Reading really cranked out a fine machine when they were building the T-1s.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 10:33 a.m.

It was a humid, 94 degree day, and those open-window cars do not have air-conditioning. It wasn't bad in the Gorge, since the close proximity of the river and the heavy shade meant that it was a solid 10-15 degrees cooler. It was rather uncomfortable though when we had to close the windows to go through Rockport Tunnel and White Haven Tunnel. With the engine working as hard as it was, they didn't want the windows down and filling the car with exhaust and cinders, although we still were pretty covered with cinders even when they weren't in the tunnels.

This line is pretty interesting because the Lehigh Valley and the CNJ basically had parallel lines from Allentown all the way up through the Lehigh Gorge. When CNJ ended their lease of the line in '72, the ICC ordered Lehigh Valley to take over the lines and customers, since they pretty much operated the same area. Lehigh Valley then took the two lines and combined the best parts of the two. So you're on the CNJ from Nesquehoning south to Jim Thorpe Junction, then cross the river on all-new R&N trackage, then hop on the Lehigh Valley just across the river at CP COAL, then run on the LV all the way to White Haven, with the old CNJ line right next to you as the bike trail, then it swaps over to CNJ trackage from White Haven up thorugh Penobscot/Mountain Top to Laurel Run, then it's back on Lehigh Valley tracks into Pittston, and then the line from Pittston to Tunkhannock is the old LV Freight Cutoff. LV had two separate main lines at Pittston; the freight main and a passenger main. Our car host, Ken Miller, was an old Conrail hand who had worked this line, and so he had all sorts of great info. Really fascinating guy to talk to.

We stopped south of the signal bridge and yard office at Penobscot (for the record, the actual town ins Mountain Top, but LV and CNJ called the spot on their line Penobscot, after Penobscot Mountain, which is the mountain that you're at the top of) to take on water and to couple up the SD50s, and that 15-20 minute wait there was mighty hot and unpleasant. Also, I'm sure that railfans were peeved that they were deprived of a shot of the #2102 passing under the signal bridge. I'm guessing they handled this south of the yard, rather than right in the yard, so that railfans weren't traipsing all over the yard.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 10:46 a.m.

It was a steep drop down into Pittston, and I was surprised at how many railfans were still out set up to photograph, considering the SD50s were on the front and the train was mostly coasting. Maybe they didn't realize there would be the SD50s leading this segment. At Pittston they were cut off, although they would follow us, at a distance, all the way into Tunkhannock. Then we crept through Duryea Yard (once known as Pittston Yard), which actually has two separate yards; Riverside where you enter from the south, and then Coxton Yard on the other side of the Lackawanna River. Coxton was the big LV yard and had a roundhouse and a coaling tower. Both are actually still there, and the roundhouse once was used by Robert M Delevan Industries for locomotive dismantling, rebuilding and leasing into the 2000s, despite the elephant-sized holes in the roof. They were on the other side of the train though, and the yard was crammed full of frack sand cars, so I couldn't get a photo of them.

With the #2102 back in the lead, and long stretches of road paralleling the railroad as we followed the Susquehanna River, the railfans were back in force and trying to pace the train which led to some, ahem, eye-opening driving. We also had a guy pacing us in a paramotor over the Susquehanna River who followed us for a long way on that contraption. We were all half-expecting to see a grisly incident involving him and a tree or power line, because he was following low and fast the whole way to Tunkhannock.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 10:55 a.m.

At Tunkhannock, the SD50s hooked onto the train and towed it back out of town to water it at a siding and then run the #2102 around the train. The SD50s shoved the train back into Tunkhannock then headed off to Duryea Yard, while the #2102 waited down on the siding.

We had a two hour layover at Tunkhannock to partake in the Tunkhannock Founder's Days, so we went and got homemade pierogies and haluski at the church, made by kindly old Polish ladies, all while trying to stay cool and nervously eyeing the skies, which looked ominous the whole time.

At around 3:30 the skies cleared up and we went over to watch them bring the #2102 down in to hook up to the train. A bunch of us were set up to get photos of the #2102, and then this guy and his daughter walked out in front of everyone. A lot of "Hey, would you mind stepping back here?" failed to cajole them out of the way (I remember them being on the RDC trip this spring and the girl frequently waltzing out in front everyone at every photo stop) so I got the photo I could. It still shows how excited people were to see a living breathing steam locomotive in Tunkhannock. And "living breathing" is true. My father and I stood there and watched them tinker with it, and the steady sizzle of steam, whine of the generator, pant of the air compressors, roar of the injectors and growl of the stoker auger imply a machine that is very much alive.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 11:25 a.m.

Then it was back south. We ran tender-first along from Tunkhannock to Pittston, and then waited, and roasted, at Pittston while they turned the #2102 on the wye in Riverside Yard. Someone amusingly noticed that on the other side of the cut of frack sand cars to our right, there was a bunch of cars derailed and on the ground. Seems someone at R&N had shoved that cut of frack sand cars in between the running track and that yard track to try and cover things up. Then it was up the mountain to Mountain Top, and even though we were in the second-to-last car now, we could still hear the #2102 pounding away at the very head end of the train. I couldn't imagine what it would have been like if we were still on the head end. We stopped again at Penobscot for them to water the #2102 and then we dropped down into Lehigh Gorge, where again the temperature was 10-15 degrees lower, with the #2102 coasting along. There are a couple of big curves in the Gorge, and with us at the very end of a 17-car train, it was very wild to look out the right window and see the locomotive behind us traveling in completely the opposite direction. Then it was a short climb from Jim Thorpe Junction to Nesquehoning, and we detrained at Nesquehoning Campus. Originally we were going to walk up and get photos of the head end, but it was way beyond the facilities and we weren't sure we could access it. The F-units and a GP38-2 were present and moved over onto our track, maybe to drag the cars down to Jim Thorpe Yard or to take the whole thing over the wye. Not sure, we waited around for 15-20 minutes and they never moved, even though they were reunning and the lights were on. Apparently they didn't deadhead the #2102 back to Port Clinton until midnight, so we decided to leave.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 12:01 p.m.

We woke up the next morning and ate breakfast and my father asked what the plan was. I assumed he just wanted to go straight home that morning, but he said he had no plans. Since we were staying in Hazelton and Scranton wasn't that far away and on the way home, I decided to head up to Scranton and see if there were any signs of life up at Steamtown.

Arriving in the parking lot, we've got the #2102's sister, Reading #2124 on display. She is one of the late build T-1s, which used even less of the donor I-10sa Consolidation in the rebuild and had roller bearings on the drive axles. The #2124 was the first engine used on the original Iron Horse Rambles, and ran until 1962 when the flue time expired. From what I understand, they really ran the #2124 hard, and then after retirement parts were swapped off of the other two T-1s, #2100 and #2102, when they took over for her. Add decades of outdoors storage, and the #2124 has been deemed to need too much work to restore by Steamtown. I also believe it's possibly too big to fit their turntable.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 12:20 p.m.

Rahway Valley 2-8-0 #15 sits on the right, displayed with a short train. This was Nelson Blount's second locomotive that he acquired, after CN 4-6-4T #47 was knocked out of service for lack of maintenance paperwork from CN (who had given it away to a railfan as a souvenir, as was recently learned). Blount bought it in '59 and it ran at Steamtown USA/Steamtown, Monadnock & Northern/Green Mountain Railway until 1972, being retired when it ruptured a flue and scalded an engineer. There's always been talk about restoring it, since it was relatively local to the area, was once overhauled at the DL&W's Scranton shops, and has historical significance for the collection but there's never been any action.

To the left is Delaware-Lackawanna M630 #3007, which is an interesting machine. In the '80s, GE launched their Super-7 rebuild program, where they took old GE U-boats and rebuilt them with microprocessor controls and wheelslip systems from a Dash-7 with the cab and nose of a Dash-8 unit, as a way of extending the lives of older units. The primary ones were U23Bs rebuilt into basically B23-7s and U23Bs rebuilt to B30-7As (B30-7 with a 12-cylinder engine instead of a regular 16-cylinder). Realizing that the same concept could be applied to other locomotives using GE electrical gear, GE took a retired BCRail M630 and applied the same electrical upgrades to it. No further interest developed in M630 "Super-7s" or M636 "Super-7s" and so GECX #5000 was the sole product. From what I've heard, GE tried sticking this in their leaser fleet, it got sent out to BNSF as a lease unit, BNSF took one look at the #5000 and realized what it was and went "Yeah, not a chance" and sent it back. D-L ended up with it and renumbered it to #3007 (3000hp, original BCRail number was #707) but it still wears the GECX livery.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 12:28 p.m.

Steam at Steamtown? Wow, that's a rarity. Over 18-20 years, I've been to Steamtown about 7 or 8 times and only seen an active steam locomotive at Steamtown. I was honestly surprised they were running since a day or two before they had announced on Facebook that some brake issue had developed on all their coaches and they were out of service. So, they were running the yard shuttle with just a CNJ combine and a DL&W caboose.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 12:36 p.m.

Rolling out of the ready track and out into the yard. The #26 was built by Baldwin as their shop switcher at their Eddystone facility and wore this olive green and silver paint during it's years working at Eddystone. Following the end of World War II, the locomotive was purchased by the Jackson Iron & Steel Company of Jackson, OH. It's career there is relatively unknown, but it reportedly suffered a pretty bad hit at some point that left the frame humped up in the center, and it ran there relatively late. It was sold to a scrap dealer and then rescued in 1979 by J. Jerry Jacobson, who then later traded it to Steamtown for CN 4-6-0 #1551. It was returned to service in 1990, ran until 1999, then went out of service for FRA-mandated overhaul, and didn't return to operation until 2015. It is a little alarming that it took them 16 years to overhaul an 0-6-0, and they've now burned through over half it's 15 years of certification time (and I don't know how how many of the 1472 days it's used) and they don't have another engine ready.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 12:40 p.m.

Brooks-Scanlon Co. 2-6-2 #1, a bit more representative of Steamtown's collection. From the overhead walkway, you can see an entire two sidings of cars and locomotives from the top down, and it's pretty disturbing. There's a wooden caboose and a wooden combine that are pretty much falling in on themselves, the Norwood & St. Lawrence 2-6-0 and CPR 4-4-4 are in absolutely horrid shape, and there's so many coaches that they are obviously never going to do anything with. They really need to purge a lot of this stuff, find it a home where it may have a chance to be restored, cosmetically and operationally, and focus their money on key pieces. Every once in a while, they'll do a nice cosmetic restoration on the Big Boy or the #2124 and everyone will applaud it, but it's the same three or four pieces that receive any love, while pieces like Brooks-Scanlon #1 or Canadian National #47 or Canadian Pacific #2929 have fallen into this condition.

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 12:44 p.m.

The #26 sits at the north end of the yard, while the switch is thrown.

And then heads back through the yard.

 

NickD
NickD MegaDork
6/25/24 12:47 p.m.

CPR G-3-c #2317 sitting outside the roundhouse. The American flags in the flag holders are a little incongruous. This was one of two big engines that Steamtown operated, and they did a bunch of running gear work to it shortly before it's 1472 ran out. Really, the smart move would have been to do the 1472 and get her up and running so that they still had an active steam locomotive. Instead, they parked it to focus efforts on Boston & Maine 4-6-2 #3713, which they've been working on since 1998 and has never run, and permanently parked the #2317, and then had a huge drop in ridership and attendance because they lacked a large steam locomotive to run trips to the Delaware Water Gap.

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