Strasburg Rail Road Visit 3


Our family vacation brought us to Lancaster County, Pennsylvania this year, and our itinerary included some hiking, Amish culture, brewpubs, pretzels and of course a little touch of railroading.  We spent a day around Strasburg, Pennsylvania visiting both the Strasburg Rail Road, as well as the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania – well, part of it anyway.

The third day of our trip to Amish country, Wednesday August 17, 2016, we spent around the Strasburg area and had a full day’s agenda planned.  We’d start out on the Strasburg Rail Road, riding the 11am train, then take the guided shop tour.  After a bite for lunch, we’d then spend most of the afternoon across the street at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, enjoying the indoor part of their exhibits.  In the evening we’d enjoy Miller’s smorgasbord, then wrap up the day shooting the 7pm run heading back to Strasburg, and the crew putting the power away for the evening right around sunset.

Strasburg runs a first-class operation, and I highly recommend visiting and riding their excursion – this was my first time visiting, and I’ll certainly be back.  The ride and scenery was beautiful, and the open car was a great choice to enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of steam railroading in the rural farm landscape.  Also, the shop tour was a great peek into all of the work this road does behind the scenes to keep things rolling, not only for their own operations, but for other railroads across the country.  Our tour guide Mark, who works in the car shop as a carpenter primarily, was knowledgeable and quite personable – as were all of the other employees we encountered during the tour.  Everyone was more that willing to stop what they were doing and answer questions from the group.  The museum across the street is simply immense, and really needs more than a day to enjoy completely.  We made it through most of the indoor exhibits during our visit, but never made it outside.  We’ll explore the rest on our next visit, for sure.

Here’s the full set of photos from our day, hopefully giving you a flavor of our visit – the ride, shop tour, museum and chase.  And a pretty nice moon-rise to boot…

Thanks for looking!
Tom

 Strasburg Rail Road No. 475 approaches the train for the first run of the day

Strasburg Rail Road No. 475 approaches the train for the first run of the day

 

 The first run of the day gets ready with 475 about to tie onto the train in Strasburg, PA

The first run of the day gets ready with 475 about to tie onto the train in Strasburg, PA

 

 Strasburg Rail Road No. 475

Strasburg Rail Road No. 475’s fireman peers out of the cab at the start of the day

 

 Strasburg Rail Road No. 475

Strasburg Rail Road No. 475’s fireman talking with someone on the platform

 

 The crew confers before departure time from Strasburg

The crew confers before departure time from Strasburg

 

 No. 475 pulls the train out of the station past fellow locomotive No. 90, who is off for the day

No. 475 pulls the train out of the station past fellow locomotive No. 90, who is off for the day

 

 Strasburg rail Road No. 475 pulls the train through conrfields

Strasburg rail Road No. 475 pulls the train through conrfields

 

 A different view of Strasburg Rail Road No. 475 pulling the train through the Amish countryside

A different view of Strasburg Rail Road No. 475 pulling the train through the Amish countryside

 

 Strasburg Rail Road pulls an excursion train through the cornfields of Strasburg, Penn.

Strasburg Rail Road pulls an excursion train through the cornfields of Strasburg, Penn.

 

 No. 475s fireman watches his gagues in the cab

No. 475s fireman watches his gagues in the cab

 

 Strasburg Rail Road No. 475 pulls an excursion train into Paradise, Penn.

Strasburg Rail Road No. 475 pulls an excursion train into Paradise, Penn.

 

 Strasburg Rail Road No. 475 pulls an excursion train into Paradise, Penn.

Strasburg Rail Road No. 475 pulls an excursion train into Paradise, Penn.

 

 The conductor rides 475

The conductor rides 475’s footboard up to the switch for the runaround move

 

 The conductor rides 475

The conductor rides 475’s footboard and signals the engineer when to stop, clear of the switch. In the background is a freight waiting to approach.

 

 475s engine crew watches their train as they run around

475s engine crew watches their train as they run around

 

 475s engineer gives passengers a friendly wave

475s engineer gives passengers a friendly wave

 

 475s fireman gives passengers a friendly wave

475s fireman gives passengers a friendly wave

 

 475 nearly heads out of view, heading for the opposite end of the train for the return trip

475 nearly heads out of view, heading for the opposite end of the train for the return trip

 

 The freight follows 475 down the pasisng siding

The freight follows 475 down the pasisng siding

 

 An Amish farm along the tracks

An Amish farm along the tracks

 

 An Amish buggy heads across the grade crossing behind the train.

An Amish buggy heads across the grade crossing behind the train.

 

 After a quick station stop, the train heads back to Strasburg

After a quick station stop, the train heads back to Strasburg

 

 Strasburg station is visible in the distance, as the train passes through a corn field

Strasburg station is visible in the distance, as the train passes through a corn field

 

 An Amish farm along the tracks

An Amish farm along the tracks

 

 An Amish farm along the tracks

An Amish farm along the tracks

 

 475 runs around the train, preparing for the noontime run

475 runs around the train, preparing for the noontime run

 

 Some folks watch 475 run around the train

Some folks watch 475 run around the train

 

 While 475 meets up with its train, the Amish and "English" cultures meet, watching a common subject

While 475 meets up with its train, the Amish and “English” cultures meet, watching a common subject

 

 Main Eastern GP9 No 764 spots loaded lumber cars in the transload area of Strasburg

Main Eastern GP9 No 764 spots loaded lumber cars in the transload area of Strasburg

 

 A fan with a Providence & Worcester t-shirt (and a classic one at that) photographes the Maine Eastern GP9

A fan with a Providence & Worcester t-shirt (and a classic one at that) photographes the Maine Eastern GP9

 Our tour guide Mark fills us in on some of the fabrication work that was going on.

Our tour guide Mark fills us in on some of the fabrication work that was going on.

 

 Mark explaining the wheel lathe

Mark explaining the wheel lathe

 

 Mark explaining the wheel lathe

Mark explaining the wheel lathe

 

 A closeup of some wrenches

A closeup of some wrenches

 

 Some funny remarks...

Some funny remarks…

 

 Detail of a narrow gauge locomotive being rebuilt

Detail of a narrow gauge locomotive being rebuilt

 

 Mark explaining the repairs being done

Mark explaining the repairs being done

 

 Mark explaining how stay bolts work

Mark explaining how stay bolts work

 

 Mark explaining how the cups work with movable stay bolts

Mark explaining how the cups work with movable stay bolts

 

 Mark pointing out some details

Mark pointing out some details

 

 Mark giving an overview of the car restoration being done

Mark giving an overview of the car restoration being done

 

 Inside the car being restored

Inside the car being restored

 

 Oil cans in the shop

Oil cans in the shop

 

 Oil cans in the shop

Oil cans in the shop

 

 Thomas waits for his next assignment

Thomas waits for his next assignment

 

 Shop work

Shop work

 

 Shop work

Shop work

 

 Boiler rebuild

Boiler rebuild

 

 Explaining the rebuilding process

Explaining the rebuilding process

 

 Fabrication

Fabrication

 

 475 runs around the train for another run

475 runs around the train for another run

 

 Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

Inside the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 An Amish buggy passes by the outdoor collection at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

An Amish buggy passes by the outdoor collection at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania

 

 475 rounds the bend at the top of the grade and into view

475 rounds the bend at the top of the grade and into view

 

 475 is about to pass by coworker No. 90

475 is about to pass by coworker No. 90

 

 475 preparing to run around the train near the end of the track at Strasburg

475 preparing to run around the train near the end of the track at Strasburg

 

 475s engineer signals his fireman as he prepares to shove back

475s engineer signals his fireman as he prepares to shove back

 

 475 running around the train

475 running around the train

 

 475 waits at Strasburg to lead the final train of the day from the station

475 waits at Strasburg to lead the final train of the day from the station

 

 475s engineer checks the running gear prior to departure

475s engineer checks the running gear prior to departure

 

 475 pulls through the curve as they head back to the station

475 pulls through the curve as they head back to the station

 

 The 7pm passenger excursion on the Strasburg Rail Road heads back to the station a little before sunset.

The 7pm passenger excursion on the Strasburg Rail Road heads back to the station a little before sunset.

 

 The nearly full moon rises over the farmland

The nearly full moon rises over the farmland

 

 The moon rises over a Pennsylvania hopper

The moon rises over a Pennsylvania hopper

 

 475s fireman throws a switch as they pause next to 90 at the end of the day

475s fireman throws a switch as they pause next to 90 at the end of the day

 

 The moon rises over a Pennsylvania hopper and 475 passing by

The moon rises over a Pennsylvania hopper and 475 passing by

 

 475 heads for the coal ramp, where it will spend the night

475 heads for the coal ramp, where it will spend the night

 

 475s fireman walks back to his locomotive, with 90 in the background sitting quietly

475s fireman walks back to his locomotive, with 90 in the background sitting quietly

 

 475s engineer moves the locomotive to the coal ramp, where it will spend the night

475s engineer moves the locomotive to the coal ramp, where it will spend the night

 

 Walking back to the power

Walking back to the power

 

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3 thoughts on “Strasburg Rail Road Visit

  • Robert Feake

    Interesting. I agree that Strasburg is a world class organization. The fact that they run so many trains per day is pretty amazing. I was actually there the day before on 8/16, but I opted for the air conditioned parlor car. This was my second visit, and I won’t hesitate to go back in the future.