Train Mountain Railroad

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Central Station

Train Mountain Railroad is a miniature hobbyist railroad near Chiloquin, Oregon, in Klamath County, which is in the south central region of Oregon. It is situated between Klamath Falls, Oregon, approximately 26 miles (42 km) to the south, and Crater Lake National Park to the north.

Geography[edit]

The approximately 2,400-acre (970 ha) property borders Highway 97 on the east side, Highway 62 (Crater Lake Highway) on the west side, and Highway 422 on the north.[1] The track and facilities which are not obscured by trees are clearly visible on public satellite images.

The elevation at Train Mountain varies from 4,200 feet (1,300 m) at South Meadow, 4,293 feet (1,309 m) at Central Station, 4,406 feet (1,343 m) at Ward Passing Track (the highest point accessible by train), to 4,780 feet (1,460 m) at Steiger Butte, the highest point on Train Mountain property.[2]

Longest miniature hobby railroad[edit]

In the 2004 Guinness World Records Train Mountain is recognized as the “Longest Miniature Hobby Railroad”.[3] At the time Train Mountain was recognized by Guinness it was reported to have 69,900 feet (13.24 mi; 21.3 km) of 7 12 in (190.5 mm) gauge mainline track and 133,250 feet (25.237 mi; 40.61 km) of total track, which includes yards, sidings, spurs, and connector tracks. During the following years approximately 10 additional miles (16 km) of new track has been added.[4]

Gauge and scale[edit]

The Train Mountain 7 12 in (190.5 mm) gauge miniature railway track is typically used for 1.5" scale trains (1.5" to 12" or 1/8 scale). Trains of 2.5" scale (2.5" to 12") are also common at Train Mountain. Some of these 2.5" scale steam locomotives can weigh in excess of 3,500 pounds (1,600 kg) for the engine and tender when fully loaded with water and fuel.

Live steam[edit]

Train Mountain is well known to members of the live steam hobby who visit regularly from all over the world.

Live Steam Trains at Train Mountain Railroad and K&W Railroad
Live Steamer at Crisp Yard. 
Live Steamer on K&W track. 

Media coverage[edit]

Train Mountain was featured on Oregon Public Broadcasting 2005 video on Train Mountain and "The Dream."[5] "The Dream" refers to late founder of Train Mountain, Quentin Breen, whose dream was to build the railroad at Train Mountain as explained in the video.

Garden railway[edit]

A Garden railway in G Scale is being constructed at Train Mountain on approximately 4 acres (1.6 ha) in the center of a 7 12 in (190.5 mm) gauge miniature railway track circle known as Midway Circle. Midway Circle is one of several such circles, which are essentially roundabouts.

Train Mountain Railroad Museum[edit]

Train Mountain Railroad Museum[6] also exists on the Train Mountain property, and consists of antique full size railroad rolling stock and artifacts which are on display. One of the most notable is the 100-short-ton (91,000 kg) antique, steam-powered, rotary snow blower or rotary snowplow, SP MW206, built by ALCo (Cooke), 11/1923, #65353,[7] that was used to remove snow from the track between Klamath Falls and Eugene, Oregon. The rotary snow blower was moved to Train Mountain on November 16, 2008.

Antique Railroad Equipment at Train Mountain Railroad Museum
Steam Powered Rotary Snow Blower
SP MW206 Rotary Snow Blower. 
Weyerhaeuser Snow Dozier WX 031. 
SP MW4047 Jordan Spreader. 

Train meets[edit]

The 25th anniversary of the founding of Train Mountain was celebrated during the summer of 2012.[8] The celebration featured an international miniature train meet entitled the "2012 Triennial." The Train Mountain tradition of Triennials began in the year 2000, and has been held every three years thereafter. According to the trainmountaintriennial.org website, as of January, 2012, pre-registrations for the next triennial include participants from Australia, Austria, New Zealand, Canada, Germany, UK, and the US, and many more are expected.[8]

Other train meets for members and those who own, operate, or have an interest in 7 12 in (190.5 mm) gauge railroading are held seven times a year.[9] These events attract participants from all over the US and Canada. The are popular with live steam enthusiasts due to the uniqueness of the layout, and the ability to operate heavy steam powered locomotives that may not be allowed at other railroads.[citation needed]

Klamath & Western Railroad[edit]

Free public train rides are available at Klamath & Western Railroad, a 501(c)3 non-profit public benefit corporation, which is located directly east and adjacent to Train Mountain on South Chiloquin Road. The train ride uses approximately 1.6 miles (2.6 km) of track, and takes about 15 to 20 minutes.[10]

Klamath & Western Railroad existed prior to the founding of Train Mountain under the name of "Over The Hill Live Steamers" which was a result of being referred to as being over the hill from the Medford Live Steamers (Southern Oregon Live Steamers,[11]) since to get there one had to traverse the Oregon Cascade Mountain Range.[12]

Klamath & Western Railroad has several antique railroad items on display, including the antique Train Order Semaphore Signal, originally used at the Southern Pacific Station in Junction City, Oregon.

Klamath & Western RR
Train Order Semaphore. 
Public Train Rides. 

Volunteer members[edit]

Train Mountain is maintained by member volunteers, who also provide special tours of Train Mountain for those who want to see more than that provided by the regular K & W public tour.[10] Such tours can take as long as eight hours, and the group will still not see all of the Train Mountain track. These tours must be arranged in advance through the Train Mountain office.[13]

Technology[edit]

Train Mountain features a Central Train Control or centralized traffic control ("CTC"), a computer controlled switching and signal system. The status of this system can be viewed online at the Friends of Train Mountain website.[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Complete Atlas". Friends of Train Mountain. Retrieved 20 February 2012. 
  2. ^ "The Complete Atlas". Friends of Train Mountain. Retrieved 20 February 2012. 
  3. ^ Guinness Book of World Records, 2004. Guinness. August 27, 2003. ISBN 978-1-892051-20-2. 
  4. ^ "Friends of Train Mountain". Retrieved 25 February 2012. 
  5. ^ http://www.opb.org/programs/ofg/segments/view/1565
  6. ^ "Surviving Equipment of the Southern Pacific Railroad and its subsidiary lines". Retrieved 21 February 2012. 
  7. ^ "Union Pacific Rotary Snowplows". Retrieved 21 February 2012. 
  8. ^ a b "Triennial website". Retrieved 20 February 2012. 
  9. ^ "Train Mountain website". Retrieved 20 February 2012. 
  10. ^ a b "Klamath & Western Railroad website". Retrieved 6 June 2014. 
  11. ^ "Medford Railroad Park website". Retrieved 20 February 2012. 
  12. ^ "Club History". Klamath & Western Railroad. Retrieved 6 June 2014. 
  13. ^ "Train Mountain Railroad". Train Mountain Railroad. Retrieved August 27, 2013. 
  14. ^ "Friends Signaled Track". Retrieved 20 February 2012. 

Coordinates: 42°33′N 121°53′W / 42.55°N 121.89°W / 42.55; -121.89