My friend Brent is an engineer for BNSF Railway, so he’s no stranger to locomotives. But even he was impressed by the 17 foot tall, 5000 horse power, steam belching SP&S 700 Saturday in Vancouver.
In the 1950s three steam locomotives were donated to the city of Portland by railroad companies that serviced the city:
(Visit the website of the Oregon Rail Heritage Foundation for more information about all of these behemoths and the foundation’s efforts to build a permanent home for these historical locomotives and other rolling stock.)
Saturday Heather and I had the opportunity to join Brent and some of his friends and family at a showing of the Spokane, Portland & Seattle #700 at the BNSF yard in Vancouver, Washington.
The train arrived just as we approached the yard. Crowds were already lined up for a chance to sit in the SP&S 700’s cab. A separate line formed to check out the modern engine parked in tandem. But the longest line lead to the refreshments tent. There was no snow yet, but the temperature was dropping and the wind was picking up and I wished I’d brought a thermos of hot coffee or cocoa.
The SP&S 700 is the third largest operating locomotive in North America. The driving wheels are 6 foot 5 inches tall.
Mile73.com has more, and supplied the photos you see in this post.
Ugh, I always miss these events. I would have lurved to have seen these giants – especially that they were running. Great shots!
dieselboi – I think this particular showing of the SPS 700 was primarily intended for BNSF employees’ friends and family. Heather from Mile73.com took all the photos – with her Blackberry!
Nice info. Linked. Voted. Enjoyed.
Steam looks great…