CIGRS at the EJ&K RR

Sunday, October 29

The Central Iowa Garden Railroad Society meeting for this month had been postponed twice, but in the end it worked out well.  We had a sunny and fairly warm afternoon for a visit to a "ride on" sized layout northwest of Ames.  The EJ&K is managed by Bob Bourne and operates regularly with guests welcome.  You can see their schedule along with other information at a web site featuring large scale setups.

We arrived around 12:30 to find one steam-powered train already running and another being prepared  for operation later in the day.  I got a shot of the yard and car barn before turning my attention to a steam engine and train with a couple of CIGRS members already aboard and enjoying a ride.  While this train pulled a 1.75% grade, I took pictures of some of the equipment near the "depot", a Monon F unit, a boxcab electric loco, and another train with a gas-powered switcher.  The C&GW steam engine was pulling a very nicely-modeled passenger train.

After wandering around the tracks taking pictures for a while, Susan and I were invited to board for a ride.  Here are some images from our ride:
Riding 1
Riding 2
Riding 3
Riding 4
Riding 5
Riding 6
Riding 7
Our ride around the mainline took just short of 10 minutes.  By the time we returned, several other trains were circling with us.  Some engines were gas powered and others carried batteries.  The SP Pacific that was being fired when we arrived was now moving onto the turntable and was then moved out onto the mainline to pull its own train.  The CIGRS crowd watched from the "depot" as trains circulated.  In front of this building was a yard where trains could be parked and pass one another.  The trackwork here included slip switches.  This area also provided for locomotive service.

At 2:20 or so we assembled for a meeting and had a briefing from Bob Bourne on the workings of the outdoor rail line.  After almost another hour of train operation, it was time to drop the fires on the steamers and start putting things away.  The EJ&K provides a transfer table - elevator device that operators can use to load their trains into pickups and trailers.  We watched while the C&GW outfit was put into a pickup, itself equipped with an elevator so that rolling stock could ride on two levels.  The engineer released steam pressure from the loco's boiler before rolling it into the pickup.

That's It!