Wednesday, June 19, 2013

"Along The Blue" #16 | 4 Comments - Click Here :

    As a modeler who enjoys the historical aspect of my subjects, I relish the research which is involved. One of the reasons for my posting these old newspaper clippings, is that within each one there gleams little bits of information that change allot of the old preconceived notions we all take for granted. Take for instance the "Y" atop Boreas. The article below reminds us that the C&S operated a very long time with no way to turn helpers. If that's the way they operated atop Boreas, it's possible they operated that way over the other passes at times as well. Backing down the hill was normal operating practice.
Also by this time, Como was practically a ghost town, hence the car repairs being done on the other side of the mountain.

Summit County Journal; May 29, 1915
Colorado & Southern Makes Improvements
    H.Heath, car inspector for the Colorado & Southern, is doing repair work on cars in the Breckenridge and Dickey yards. He says that in order to keep from pulling empty cars over the hills to Denver for repairs, the work will be done here so they may be sent east loaded. It is also understood that Superintendent Mitchell has plans for putting in a "Y" at the top of Boreas so engines may turn there instead of backing down the hill.

Inspector Heath at work in the Dickey yard.

Summit County Journal; Oct 14, 1905
Railroad Grade Changed
    The Colorado & Southern railway company will try an experiment on the Atlantic slope of Boreas Pass this winter. For years the expense of snow-shedding that side of the pass has been an enormous annual drain on the treasury. Nearly every summer one or more snow-sheds burned down and had to be rebuilt. As snow-sheds cost about $7 a running foot, the company has hit upon a new plan, and instead of rebuilding the 1,800-foot shed which went up in smoke a few months ago, the location of the track was changed (away from the hill) and the track raised, on the presumption that the snow would blow off of the new roadbed.
    During the past two months a grading force has been on the hill, preparing the new grade, which was completed and railed on last Monday.
    Trains are now running over the new track, which is one-half mile in length, and for the good of all concerned we hope the new one will prove a better system of operating a railroad through a very, very snowy district.
    Snow-sheds are a menace to travel and should be dispensed with except in extreme cases, and if the "high grade" or "fill" proposition will not suffice, the trestle plan should be adopted.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Late Spring Update | 0 Comments - Click Here :

Roper tries to make the best of highway miles.
    Other than the assembly line of BLW boxcar kits sitting on my workbench which I've worked on sporadically, I haven't done anything layout related of late. With rodeo season in full-swing, my weekends are spent on the road, and I have yet to try and bring something along to work on during the idle moments.
    In the meantime, I will update this blog with interesting articles I've come across (that's if y'all want me to continue to do so) until I can post more layout progress. I'm sure Roper will have something to interject at times also.
    Here are a couple of articles for all the prototype operators out there to apply to your pike:
~ Cowboy Up!

Summit County Journal; Apr 7, 1906;
    On last Sunday, a new system of signals and train orders went into effect on the South Park railroad. Hereafter, the semaphore displayed at all telegraph stations must show "red" at all times, save when a train is at station, and no train is allowed to pass a telegraph station unless signalled to proceed.
    Henceforth, when a train approaches the station, the engineer not only sounds the regular "long" whistle, but must, upon coming in sight of the semaphore, which will show "red", sound four "short" blasts. If the station agent has "no orders" and has no occasion to hold the train, he turns his semaphore to "white", which signal the engineer acknowledges with two "short" blasts of the whistle.
    As soon as the train has departed from the station, the semaphore is turned back to "red", and in that position it remains till the next train comes along.
    The recent D.&R.G. wreck* at Adobe is responsible for this new system of signalling and moving trains, which seems to be much safer than the old service.

* The head-on wreck at Adobe occurred because the operator at Swallows fell asleep (while his semaphore displayed "white") and failed to deliver orders to a passing train, thus resulting in the loss of 35 lives.

Summit County Journal; Mar 13, 1915;
A Fair Sample of Our Railroad Service
    Here is a fair sample of the service the Colorado & Southern is giving this section:
  • Tuesday morning a freight left Denver.
  • Tuesday night a car was left at Como, instead of being brought through.
  • Wednesday morning the passenger train for the west picked up the freight car, and ran as a local freight train.
  • At Breckenridge, the freight car was switched on a siding by the passenger engine.
  • Before departing for Leadville, the baggage car was pulled up alongside the boxcar and the train crew, assisted by the depot force and Roadmaster, transferred the freight to the express car.
The train was filled with passengers, paying to ride on a passenger train, but getting local freight train service. Thanks Mr. Railroad.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

"Along The Blue" #15 | 1 Comments - Click Here :

Blue Valley Times; Oct 10, 1914;
Fine Dining
    Because through traffic on the Colorado & Southern railway branch which serves this territory was reopened before the 10th of this month, this Times man had to eat his straw-hat.
    As the straw-hat season was just over anyway, parting with the hat was easy. The exigencies of repeated railroad blockades have accustomed our systems to dishes of straw, sage-roots and pine needles, and our kitchens are presided over by some of the best cooks on earth. Moreover, these concoctions are deliciously flavored with reflections on how the prospect of making us eat them, has inspired the workers on the impaired railroad grade to supreme their efforts.