The International Steam Pages

Steam in China, October 1999

Li Weishu (Fax: 0086-431-8587783) reports on a recent tour where he acted as guide for a group from Dorridge Travel Service Ltd.

Here are the details:


Meet the first part of the group at Beijing airport and checked into Beijing International Hotel. We hired two taxis driving to the limestone railway at Dahichang. It took about 1 hour to reach there. Few people are doing cleaning job along the track.. Railway employee said that the engine will work after 15:00. At 15:10, the first light engine showed up, then few minutes later, the next train came. After that, from 15:10 till 17:17 before we left, 7 trains passed in working condition. Light and traffic are both satisfied. On our way back, we met traffic jam, it took longer time to drive back. Stay in International Hotel.


Went to airport to meet the major group, had lunch in the restaurant, visited the Forbidden City in the afternoon, then we headed to Beijing West Station. Took train 177 to Baotou at 16:47. 2 SY engines were seen in the station area. Diner in the restaurant car, meal is great.


Train was delayed, we arrive in Baotou at 6:15, A QJ ? seen in Baotou East Station at 6:07 and a JS in Wanshuiquan Station. Transfer to Baotou Hotel to have breakfast, then we drove to Singing Sand. Because of road construction, it took longer time for us to reach the Singing Sand, On the way we saw the passenger 851 in front of us, both of our drivers did good job, we just got off the bus when the train was shown already at 9:05. We didn’t have enough time to set up and find location, just point and shoot.. Because the construction works in the tunnel, the QJ hauled passenger train almost stopped when he was approaching to the Tunnel.

9:33 QJ? Down hill freight train passed the viaduct toward Baotou

11:30 QJ? The newly running passenger train from Hohhot to Dongsheng approaching to the tunnel

12:35 QJ? Uphill train passed through the Singing Sand viaduct

Since the cable car is running now, so we took them to the other side of the river, which cost 31 yuan for a return trip.

14:05 QJ? Uphill train from Baotou to Dongsheng passed through while we are on the other side of the river.

15:20 QJ downhill train from Dongsheng to Baotou passed

15:46 QJ? Passenger train returns from Dongsheng, heading to Baotou and Hohhot.

16:35 QJ? Uphill train got through

17:15 QJ? 852 passenger train came back from Shenmu

Sun set at 17:30, we drove to Dongsheng, arrived in at 19:40 because of road construction near Dongsheng. Stay in Dongsheng Hotel.


Sun got out at 7:30, it took 45 minutes to Aobaogou Station.

8:31 QJ 6710 6348 with banker 6247 North bound at Aobaogou Station

9:05 QJ7044 1891 with banker 6193 North bound at South of curved viaduct

10:51 QJ2670 passenger south bound at South of curved viaduct

11:00 QJ 6247 light engine south bound at big viaduct at south

11:51 QJ 3086 1685 with banker 6247 north bound at embankment near the little temple at south of Aobaogou Station

12:01 QJ6348 6711 south bound at curved viaduct

13:31 QJ7044 6289 south bound at Aobaogou Station.

14:37 QJ1611 6194 south bound at Aobaogou Station.

Our whole group rode on the passenger train 852 to Dongsheng, then we visited the Dongsheng Depot. I bought a factory plate which made in Datong in 1968

QJ6248 6287 were being repaired in the workshop.

QJ6014,6240,688? Dumped. The number of the dumped engine seems reduced greatly compared with my previous visits.

QJ 2938,2977 coaling.

Stay in Dongsheng Hotel, supper at hotel restaurant.


Left Dongsheng at 7:52, arrived in Aobaogou at 8:38

10:13 QJ6194 passenger south bound at big viaduct at far south end.

11:18 QJ 6247 south bound at above location

11:50 QJ2586 1891 with banker 6247 north bound at above location

13:21 QJ6193 light engine south bound at Aobaogou station

14:20 QJ? ? north bound was not seen because I left early than the group. But sure one.

Once again, the whole group took train 852 to Baotou instead of bus drive. Met them in Baotou station and stay in Baotou Hotel


Left hotel at 7:10, arrived in Houba at 8:38

9:45 JS 8280 passenger south bound at east of Houba Station

no more train show up till 14:00, we decided to visit Baotou steel works

stopped at Ajila Depot, visit the museum

QJ 6836,7059,1235,1237,7054,70586518,6827,6759

JS 8267,8282,8006,8317,8319,8326,8007,8316,

FD 1653 DK2-114 JF6836 were seen in the yard

After that, we waiting for slag tipping in the steel work, unfortunately, the only train came too late to photographed for still photographer, but it did looks beautiful in the dark.

Back to Baotou hotel

The new line leading from Shenmu to south will be finished in July 2000 according to official announcement, it could be indicate the traffic will be lighter after that. The good news is there are two pare of passenger train running on this line now, of course, in steam. Since majority of the total 750 tun coal should be transport on this line in later of the year, so the traffic begun to pick up from June till December, then declined from January gradually according to the employees there.

Weather is great except it was a bit of too warm for steam, but it dropped down on the night of 27th .Oct.

Oct 28th

Left for train 240 for Jiningnan at 8:00, arrived at 12:46, lunch at restaurant, then took Train 711 to Galadesitai at 15:03 hard sleeper on board 5 people were arranged ride on footage on QJ6655

QJ6655 attached to our train after we left Benhong, and QJ6153 till Haoluku, then QJ? To Galadesitai at 5:42. Times table changed after Oct.10th, but no big difference. Now it got 4 minutes stop in Galadesitai.

Oct 29th

Transfer to post office hotel. Have breakfast in hotel, then headed for Summit station

There are more trains running east bound during our visit,

East bound trains

6:45 QJ? QJ? Passed Reshui town

8:58 QJ6247, 6356 West of Summit station

10:15 QJ6687,6878 Not see it personally

11:40 QJ6638,6735 west of summit station

13:03 QJ7041,7040 Brick work bridge

15:30 QJ6577 6375 West of summit station

West bound trains

9:45 QJ7137,6517 East side of the summit tunnel

11:30 QJ6389 6996 two light engines not see personally

13:32 QJ6639,6876 West side of brick work

14:32 QJ6135 light engine with two wagon attached close to curved viaduct

17:13 QJ6351,6760 Summit tunnel

Oct 30th

East Bound trains

9:56 QJ6760, 6579 at first level of South hill in front of Hotel

10:50 QJ6356,6247 not seen personally, recorded number from others

12:10 QJ6878,6735 curved viaduct

14:20 QJ6687,7940 West side of brick work

16:11 QJ6996,7143 East of curved viaduct

West bound trains

9:21 QJ6639, 6996 South hill in front of hotel

10:55 QJ7143,6876 light engines

13:05 QJ6763,6925 not seen personally, recorded from others

14:00 QJ6351,6135 light engines

15:17 QJ 6110 light engine curved viaduct

17:17 QJ6760,6580 Reshui in front of hotel

Oct 31st

East bound trains

8:? QJ6735,6878 viaduct on the east side of Jingpeng

9:05 QJ6274,6356 viaduct on the east side of Jingpeng

13:59 QJ7040,6687 curved viaduct

15:05 QJ7041,6577 not see it personally recorded number from others

17:10 QJ6996,7143 same with above

West bound trains

7:00 QJ6996,7143 recorded times and number from others

10:04 QJ? Curved viaduct

11:48 QJ6925,6351 in front of hotel

14:36 QJ6517,7012 light engines at curved viaduct

21:40 QJ6998 passenger train at Reshui


East bound trains

7:06 QJ?QJ? in front of hotel

8:40 QJ6687,7041 out of tunnel 1

11:22 QJ7143,6996 east side of curved viaduct

13:00 QJ?QJ? Summit station

14:45 QJ6356,6274 viaduct at west side of Jingpeng

West bound trains

6:45 QJ?QJ? light engines in front of hotel

10:23 QJ6925,6375 east side of curved viaduct short train with 7 wagon attached

11:53 QJ?QJ? West side of summit station

13:53 QJ?QJ? summit tunnel

15:41 QJ?QJ? light engines viaduct at west side of Jingpeng

17:03 QJ6687,6110 light engines at summit station waiting


East bound trains

8:01 QJ?QJ? close to summit tunnel

12:54 QJ?QJ? summit tunnel

13:30 QJ6135,6878 curved viaduct

West bound trains

6:57 QJ?QJ? in front of hotel

8:59 QJ6135,6878 West bank close to Jingpeng station

10:09 QJ?QJ? light engines East side of curved viaduct

We left Reshui at 14:45, before that, we say a east bound train waiting at Xiakongzi Station

Arrive in Chifeng at 19:00, we have dinner at railway restaurant, then take train 208 to Fuxin at 21:15, first class sleepers on board. QJ6345 in Yebaishou station

Nov.3 rd

Arrived at Fuxin at 5:32, transfer to hotel, wash and breakfast at hotel. Then visited the Haizhou open pit. It’s so foggy that we couldn’t see the working pit until 12:00. At 9:28 the first SY went down to the pit. 9:50 1395 working in the pit. Two SYs seen there 3 SYs could be seen there. The pit is 4KM long and 2KM by width. The bottom is 200m deep.

At coaling tower, 2-6-2 YJ403 and SY0541 were dumped there.

On the way to Minzhu SY1302 at 12:50 west bound passed behind the power plant, followed by SY0540 light engine.

SY0391 hauled passenger train to Wangying at 14:51 and SY0076 hauled passenger train to Dongliang at 15:10 at Minzhu we spent the rest of time to visit the depot which has a round house in it.

Train 517 17:42 to Shenyang, arrive in at 20;53, transfer to Gloria Hotel

QJ6708 in Xinqiu station. QJ? At Xinlitun


Visit the Sujiatun locomotive museum, some of the locomotives being moved and painted, soon they will be moved to the new museum which located on the east side of the city. It’s dangerous for them to dig a pitch covered with water, which caused one of us falling into it, and got all wet. Few steam engines work in the yard.

Since not many activities in Shenyang, we drove to Fushun, stay in the junction area from 14:00 till 16:30 JS6473? Working for CNR. SY1400, SY1492,SY0869, SY0153 working for colliery line

Stay in Global hotel


Visit the Anshan steel complex . We got the permit only at furnace area. It is quite busy there.  SY0436, 0090, 1561, 0306,1037, 0571, 0115, 0433, 1035,0440, 1555, 0836, 1031 were working there plus YJ289,290. According to the engine driver’s word, two YJ will be dumped soon after they got two small diesels.

Just before we finished the visit, two of us were caught by security for photographing their building and facilities but our guys say. So our local guide was kept for about half hours by the security people. Making a lot of phone calls to explain what we are doing here.

It seems to be very important to follow their requirements if we don’t want to get into trouble.

The worst thing now to visit the Complex are, not able to photograph slag-tipping and their repair shop, also the dumped engines outside the repair shop.

Took bus to Shengyang, back to the luxury hotel again.


Early departure from Shenyang airport at 8:00, arrive in Beijing new terminal at 9:10, transfer to International hotel, then head to the lime stone railway. The weather was not good, but I heard that our group had a lot of fun there. Riding on the narrow gauge engine, of course, it’s fun.

Finished all the steam activities for the trip and returned to hotel


See off our people at Beijing airport then took train to Changchun in the evening.


Arrived in Changchun. Don’t forget 2 QJs in Steam in the shed and 1 is not in steam, but in good condition.

It’s always been a great trip to travel in China for those who love steam engine so much. Don’t wait too late to miss them, QJs won’t wait you too long. Anyhow, welcome you to the paradise of steam world.

To contact with me as following address:

Li Weishu Jilin Steam Locomotive Tour

Fax: 0086-431-8587783

Rob Dickinson