Steam Days on the Espee

Graphics by Bruce Petty

West of Yuma on the Sunset Route, an empty reefer block rolls westward towards Indio. These Southern Pacific 4-10-2 locomotives had a long driver wheelbase, they worked here because of the easy curves along the route.

Steam days at Burbank Junction, as the Owl #57, with a helper engine leeds westward on the Valley line during the early evening. Drifting off the Coast Route is a loaded eastbound reefer block with a 4-10-2 locomotive.

Water stop at Sun Valley. Working on a steam engine in the desert was about 120 degrees inside the locomotive cab. OK, this is also the edge of the layout.

Modeling Notes: The smoke and steam was done with the Adobe Photoshop program. Its not hard to do, just study real photos of steam locomotive smoke and try your hand at this kind of steam art with the airbrush.

The 4-10-2 and the 4-8-2 HO steam locomotives are owned by Dick Hughes, who is a retired Southern Pacific Conductor. He belongs to the Dunsmuir Model Railroad Club and tells really colorful steam railroading stories. So. . . Later on this website will be "Real Railroad Stories" as told by Dick when he was running steam on the Modoc Line out of Alturas, Ca.