Mid Winter...that's what the calendar says, it was a nice weekend to try out sunscreen and t-shirt styles for the summer months. There wasn't even much snow to look at on the back side of San Gorgonio on the way home. It was a light turnout but a lot of things were taken care of.
Over the years we have called our weekends out at the tracks "Runs" to attract visitors, naming them "work weekends" shies people away from bringing out their equipment and running the railroad. We only have eight weekends normally during the season to accomplish things around here. We work during most of them, if someone wants to haul buckets of fill up the hill during a meet am I going to say no you can't? Bring it on, making your steam engine or train do more than run in circles is actually fun to do. If folks want to help out laying down fifty more feet of track up the hill, I'll find the track screws and joiners real quick, and a bucket of refreshments too. This place wasn't built over one weekend and it takes a lot to keep it going, and always plenty more to do. Limited time and limited workers; the sweat only spreads so far. So I'd call it a steamapalooza, railfest or what ever it takes to have interested parties roll out here for a day or weekend and see our railroad thru the rocks.
Lots of things over the weekend, from Dad's list we had;
John: while We were gone: Hauled Dirt to end of track. To increase grade,
Leveled Spot by "G" Gauge for Don's Parking. Dug Trench to move water
spout to inside the Upper Ballon (Big Rock).
Emptied fire barrel,
cut a load of wood.
Visited Gary, great visit, he was in great spirits and trotting the attributes of medical alternatives
Hit the Hardware store and picked up supplies for water plug move.
Moved water line and discussed water leak that we had no idea about except second hand,
refilled water line.
Delivered wood for retaining wall at lift, leveled out area before so no one falls in.
Delivered wood for Don's Landing.
Dumped ashes, lifted track at end of track were John had dumped fill.
Fitted in and welded three lift out tracks in Engine House; Brian and Greg.
Blew out sand and leaves out of lift area.
Changed the garden valve by the Bird water.Stopping a leak; Greg,Brian
We started isolating different areas to find leaks; Greg, Brian, Brendon
Dug up shut off by trash can. Valve would not shut off.
Old wood stop ,that holds the Blue Bell together was rotten . We replaced
the stop and push the Blue Bell back together. Went to town to by fittings
to bypass valve that would not shut off.
Refilled both dirt piles for loading up the hill with Brendon's Bob Cat.
Brian and Brendon installed bypass valve we bought Saturday.
More Isolation testing.
We found a wet area by the shut-off valve at the Pullman.
We DID NOT Dig in that area.
Brendon took out thrash barrel Sunday .
Drive in rods to retain RR tie on south side of lift. Fill to be added later.
Cut Rods 48" 42" 30" for retaining wall north side of Station and for RR tie wall already installed in camp space at Horseshoe.
Emptied Fire barrel. Cleaned BBQ out and ready for next time.
Cleaned up around Tie area.
Brian painted flashing around Engine House.
Washed down posts of Lift. BLUE again.
As I write this JOHN G is making multiple loads of girt and rock up the Hill
That's quite a bit of stuff done on a "Run", We did unload the engines, the GE and the American Friday morning as well, ran the GE and picked up and did the Friday stuff by rail. Saturday the welder was delivered by rail. Brendon brought out 3030, and we actually had all three trains running Sunday afternoon. Sunday morning Brendon got an early start and we listened to steam in the early morning. There was time to play too. But, is getting to spend time out in the High Desert and enjoying the great weather really work?
Next month is the Standard Gauge Meet, February 13-16. Bring the skinny wheels out and run the hill. I can bet you the Barter Boys will spend at least a day 'working' loads of fill up the high line. Smiling the whole time. This Winter either hasn't got here or is going to be a mild one. Plan on mild and plan on being out for the Standard Gauge Meet.
Link for pictures down here and any questions give me a rattle at email@example.com .
Snow comes to Joshua Tree
9 years ago