Sunday, April 11, 2010

2010- Year of the Iron Horse

Well, here we are barely 4 months into 2010 and already we're only a few weeks away from some heavy-duty iron horses getting out and stretching their legs.

(CP Swami/
On the weekend of May 1st and 2nd, the San Bernardino Railroad Historical Society will be operating their 1927-built Baldwin 4-8-4 on a special train between Los Angeles Union Station and San Diego's Santa Fe Depot. More information about tickets and departure times can be viewed here. The #3751 will also be on hand for San Bernardino's bicentennial the weekend of May 8th, although no excursions are planned.

( Jacksich)

Coinciding with National Train Day, the Grand Canyon Railway will be operating series of short excursions out of Williams, AZ on May 8th using former Chicago Burlington & Quincy Baldwin 2-8- #4960. As reported earlier here, the #4960 has been converted to burn vegetable oil. According to the Grand Canyon Railway's website,the #4960 will be used to power the Cataract Creek Rambler an 8-mile roundtrip excursion out of Williams, AZ. They also announced plans for additional Ramblers on Memorial Day weekend, Independence Day and Labor Day as well as a special all the way to the South Rim on September 18th, 2010.

(Kevin Madore/

Western Maryland Scenic's 1916-built Baldwin 2-8-0 #734 will be making its way to West Virginia's Potomac Eagle excursion to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the completion of the former Baltimore & Ohio railroad line into Petersburg, WV this June. The excursion operates over South Branch Valley's former B&O Green Spring-Petersburg WV line. The 3 day celebration is scheduled to take place june 25-27. The #734 will also be joined by New Hope Valley Railway 0-4-0T #17 and Flagg Coal Co. 0-4-0T #75 for the event.

(Sam Botts/

Another event in June will be the National Railroad Historical Society's Endless Mountain Rails in Scranton, PA between June 21 through 27. Holding an NRHS event in the home of Steamtown seemed like a no-brainer for the organization, but also keep in mind there's only so many times they could do that. Besides Steamtown's resident Canadian National 2-8-2 Mikado #3254 and Canadian Pacific's 4-6-2 Pacific #2317, Reading & Northern's 1928-buit Baldwin 4-6-2 Pacific #425 is expected to operate a Dureya to Port Clinton, PA excursion on June 26th.

Union Pacific has also announced a series of excursions for 2010 in Iowa, Oregon, Missouri and Texas featuring their 4-6-6-4 'Challenger' #3985 and 4-8-4 Northern #844- this is in addition to their regularly scheduled Frontier Days steam specials between Denver, CO and Cheyenne, WY between July 22 and 26th.

Keep in mind this is only a partial list- the Owosso, MI-based Steam Railroading Institute hasn't announced anything regarding their Pere Marquette Lima Berkshire 2-8-4 #1225, nor has anything been finalized regarding Southern Pacific Daylight #4449 or SP&S #700- both based out of Portland, OR.

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