The International Steam Pages


Standard Gauge Steam in China

In general I no longer report on steam operation in China owing to the behaviour of various tour groups and individuals who have sprayed money recklessly in the last few years. Hence the page below is now very dated. However there is plenty of of information on Florian Menius's former website which Dave Fielding has taken over, SY Country. Note also I have posted a June 2006 China Steam summary courtesy of Bernd Seiler of FarRail tours. Exceptionally I have added a report of my visit to Jalainur in November 2007.


Since 1999, I have maintained a list of narrow gauge steam lines in China with links to individual reports. I didn't do a standard gauge list because it would have been too long and also, to be honest, my interest is primarily in the narrow gauge. Since then the amount of steam in the country has diminished greatly. This list is not complete, it tries to document those locations where non China Rail steam does more than shunt, primarily it shows where you can expect line working with the addition of places like some steelworks which offer interesting photographic opportunities or places with non standard locomotives (ie not JS and SY) and a few tantalising incomplete reports, all of which have appeared on these web pages. I would welcome corrections and additions and I hope readers will find it helpful in planning their trips. Some locations have had many visits and to keep things under control not all reports are linked. Ideas for further inclusions and places to explore would be greatly appreciated and you should also check Florian Menius's web pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk because he has reports which are not available on my web pages.... Look under 'Steam Lines'. See also Bernd Seiler's site http://www.farrail.com for pictures and trip reports.


With dieselisation, some of the original entries are best described as 'ex-steam' and with this number likely to grow, I have moved such entries to a separate section at the bottom (first entries 19th January 2003). Invariably they will be linked in the list below.


Entries are by province to make it easier to locate the railway you want.

Anshan (October 2002)
Baiyin (October 2004)
Baotou Steel Works (December 2003)
Beitai Iron and Steel (mid-2004)
Benxi (November 2003)
Changzhi (September 2004 )
Chengde (May 2002)
Chongqing Steelworks (December 2002)
Dagu Railway (October 2004)
Dashiqiao (January 2003)
Dengta Industrial Railway (November 2002)
Dongsheng/Shenmu (April 2002)
Fushun Coal Mine (November 2003)
Fushun New Steel Works (November 2003)
Fuxin (October 2004)
Gongchangling (December 2003)
Haicheng (May 2002)
Hami (November 2004)
Handan Steelworks
(September 2004)
Hechi (November 2004)
Hegang (October 2004)
Heibaoshan (- Nenjiang) (October 2003)
Huanan (December 2002)
Huludao Zinc smelter (August 2003)
Jalainur (November 2008)
Jitong (October 2004)
Jixi (October 2004)
Kaiyuan (August 2003)
Laibin (April 2003)
Luanxian (March 2002)
Luocheng (December 2003)
Luohe (October 2003)
Maanshan (September 2004)
Meihekou Mining Bureau (October 2004)
Nanpiao Mining Railway (October 2004)
PeiTun Railway (September 2003)
Pingdingshan (September 2004)
Pingzhuang (September 2004)
Qinhuangdao (December 2002) - added 21st January 2003
Qitaihe (November 2002)
Sancha-Luocheng-Dilai Local Railway (November 2002 - added June 2003)
Shangjie (report added 11th November 2003)
Shaoxing Iron Ore Railway (November 2004) 
Shenyang Local Railway (August 2003)
Shijiazhuang Local Railway (November 2002)
Shuangyashan (March 2002)
Songkhao - Datong - (December 2002)
Taiyangcun Cement Works (December 2002)
Tangshan Coal Mine (September 2004)
Tangshan Steelworks (September 2004)
Tangwangshan-Pailou (November 2002)
Tiefa (September 2004)
Tongchuan East (November 2004)
Tongchuan West (November 2004)
Wansheng (March 2002)
Weitoushan (January 2003)
Xiangtan (November 2002 visit, added 11th November 2003)
Xuanhua (September 2004)
Xuzhou (January 2003)
Yangjiazhangzi - Huludao (Jinxi) Railway (September 2004)
Yao-Jie Coal Railway (November 2004)
Yemao (November 2002)
Yima (September 2004)
Yinta (October 2002)
Yongcheng (September 2004)
Yuanbaoshan (February 2004)
Zhenjiang (September 2004)
Zhungeer (October 2004)


Anhui

Maanshan

In March 2001 Hideki.Sakurai saw steam engines working at Maanshan, which is famous for its steel industry, and at Tongling, See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Peitun

Chinese enthusiasts reported on this 'new' line which is on page 6 (Line 24A of Quail), Datun coal power plant railway .  It starts at Peitun station on the Xupei railway, which is near Xuzhou city. Location is very flat. At least 6 QJs are working. Numbers are: QJ7022, 7031, 7032, 7075, 7077 and 7125. They all have "small" (German type) deflectors. Alexander Rettig visited in in September 2003 and found: "The two new DF4's are situated lonely on a side track, but staff confirmed they will put into service from Oct, 1st. All staff were very kind and friendly. Freely access given to the depot and facilities. Going to this railway is very easy. Need to take a bus from Xuzhou to PeiXian (CNY 13/about 75min ride). There change to local bus number 2 (CNY 1,5/about 20min ride). A stop is pretty near to the freight yard. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Chongqing Province

Chongqing area

There is various industrial activity with SYs, the most notable of which is the continued operation of GJ 0-6-0T at the General Steel Plant. See Robin Gibbon's report from March 1999. Also Bruce Evans's report from April 1999. Derek Jenkins visited Chonqing Steel Works/Dadukou in late 2002.

Songkhao (Datong) Coal Railway

SY operated coal railway. First reported here by Bernd Seiler and visited by me in December 2001. Derek Jenkins found little change in March 2002. Bernd Seiler was here in November 2002. Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002.

Wansheng/Nanchuan

Until relatively recently, this line used JFs. The first report I had of this coal railway was from Robin Gibbons in March 1999.   Bernd Seiler reported on quite busy SY activity in November 2000. These days the JFs are long gone and the SYs tend only to play to the paid gallery. Derek Jenkins found little change in March 2002.

Gansu 

Baiyin:

Warwick Mead reported on this operation which has a number of SYs used inter alia on workers' trains in July 2004. Bernd Seiler notes that the two main operations here are trains to/from the open cast pit north of the city (10km) and serving the large industrial area east of the town. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Jiayuguan:

No proper reports but Trevor Maxted has information on the steel works steam (QJ, JS, SY) reported in December 2001.

Liujiaxia-HekouNan

This a short JS operated line running through a spectacular gorge on the upper parts of the Yellow river. Reported by Florian Menius in September 2004, http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm, John Agnew and Jeremy Wainright were here in November 2004

Yao-Jie Coal Railway

This railway branches off the Lanzhou-Xining CNR line at Haishiwan, owns a 28km long line (in mountainous area) and uses SYs to haul 3 million tons of coal per year.

Guandong

Pingshi Coal Railway:

A 75 km long JS operated coal railway with a daily mixed. Likely to be dieselised SOON. Florian Menius was here in April 2000. See also Bryan Acford's November 2001 report together with my brief visit in December 2001 with the first diesel at work. 

Maba - Shaping

Bernd Seiler was here in October 1999.

Shaoguan (Huanggang-Geding)

This is a JS/diesel operated local railway. Bernd Seiler was here in October 1999. Florian Menius was here in April 2000 and again in October 2000.

Shilong

2 SYs were reported shunting here in July 1999.

Guangxi

Hechi (Jingchengjiang):

Bernd Seiler and Klaus Wesser first reported on this JS operated railway with its magnificent scenery in January 1999. Florian Menius was here in October 2000, Roy Laverick in March 2001 and there is a further extended report from Johs. Damsgaard Hansen dating from April 2001. Jan Willem van Dorp was here in September 2001. It is proving increasingly popular and you should also read Robin Gibbons report from November 2001 - http://www.railwaysofchina.com (link broken 5th April 2019) and Bryan Acford's report also from November 2001. Since when (December 2002) there have been numerous minor items in the Steam_in_China news group which report continued steam activity albeit not always at the right time of day.... Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002, Hugh Ballantyne in April 2003, Michael Rhodes in October 2003 and David Whitfield in December 2003. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information, Bernd Seiler's visit in October 2004. The Steam_in_China yahoo newsgroup reported two new diesels in November 2004 and significant reduction in steam activity.

Laibin - Heshan

Bernd Seiler and Klaus Wesser also first reported on this JS operated railway in January 1999, opinion is generally that the steam activity here is less reliable that at Hechi. There is a further extended report from Johs. Damsgaard Hansen dating from April 2001 and Bryan Acford's November 2001 report. Hugh Ballantyne was here in April 2003

Dongmen (also known as Luocheng)

Bernd Seiler and Klaus Wesser also first reported on this JS operated railway in January 1999. There is a brief report from Johs. Damsgaard Hansen dating from April 2001. Service is sparse and the area may not be completely open to foreigners. Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002 and David Whitfield in December 2003.

Sancha-Luocheng-Dilai Local Railway

CRJ 134 reports that an SY worked side-branch serving a fertiliser complex near Guanglin has been investigated. The line diverges from the Luocheng line at the first (small) station, Louya, situated north of the Dulijia river bridge and some 4km from Sancha. In November 2002, SY 0980 was in action, SY 0371 was dead on shed. Trains are thought to run 'as required' exchanging with the local railway branch line services at Chayan, the second station on the line (9km from Sancha).

Taiyangcun Cement Works

This has at least 2 SYs. Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002.

Yemao (Yemao is situated about half way between Jinchengjiang and Liuzhou)

There is a short branch here, JS worked with a YJ present. See Florian Menius's October 2000 report. Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002.

Hebei

Canzhou-Huanghua

See Continental Railway Journal 113, 118 - QJ operated?

Chengde:

SY and JS worked the steeply graded branch to the steelworks west of the town. There is more steam at work within the steelworks area. Jan Willem van Dorp was here in September 2001 and Derek Jenkins from October 2001. I have now added a few pictures for my own trip in January 2002 so you can see what you are missing if you haven't been here yet. It is generally agreed by correspondents (March 2002) that the main branch operations will be dieselised by the middle of 2002. It was still steam in mid-April but I was told on 10th May 2002 by Bill Alborough that 3 brand new DF4 were present and would start working on May 10th initially between the CNR station and the stabling point 'to cut down noise pollution in the city area'.....

Handan Steelworks

This has the usual set of SYs and is significant because the shed and much of the activity is viewable from a public footbridge. Bruce Evans was here in December 2001. Reported to be operating normally by Roy Bowden in November 2002. David Longman was here in December 2002 and has posted a picture gallery, Adrian Freeman following in January 2003. By February 2003, visitors found access very much restricted compared to the freedom afforded visitors in late 2002  Chris Yapp was here in October 2003, Michael Rhodes also in October 2003 and Derek Jenkins in November 2003. Chris Yapp found plenty of steam here in April 2004 too.

See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

handanmap.gif (29865 bytes)

Jingdian Steelworks

Between Handan and Changzhi near SheXian, no published reports but known to use steam.

Luanxian

This is an oil line north-east of Tangshan (Quail Page 3) with a few QJ and little activity reported Florian Menius in March 2002, (added 31st March 2002).

Lingyuan Steelworks

Near Yebaishou, this uses SYs but I have been told that it has tight security as it makes military grade special steels....

Pinggu Local Railway

A JS worked line near Qinhuangdao only reported once by Bruce Evans in November 1998.

Qinhuangdao Local Railway

A SY worked line only reported once by Bruce Evans in November 1998. SY 0792 was seen working here in late 2002, by a non-enthusiast, there are said to be several steam locos at work....

Shijiazhuang Local Railway

This is a steam operated railway with double headed QJs. See Bruce Evans report from December 2001. Reported to be operating normally by Roy Bowden in November 2002.

Tangshan Steel Works

SY activity reported by Stephan Menius in October 1999 and Frank Engel in February 2000. Bill Alborough was here in October 2002 and again in March 2003 when it remained 100% steam. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Tangshan Coal Mine(s)

SY activity on coal and passenger trains reported by Stephan Menius in October 1999 and Frank Engel in February 2000. Bill Alborough was here in October 2002. Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002. Bill Alborough reports in March 2003 that "No 2 coal mine has received two GK1C BoBo diesels (Builders plates CSR 12/02) in a tasteful shade of Salmon Pink. These were handling all the coal movements. The Dido remained steam hauled by SY and another (0031) was shuttling around the yard with a few wagons collecting scrap metal, including bits of locomotive." David Longman was here in December 2003. See the reports on diseleisation on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Xuanhua

The following report was posted in the Steam_in_China Newsgroup and forward to me by Louis Cerny. "Xuanhua is located 171 km west of Beijing Dong station (via Fengtai) on the mainline to Datong. For many years SYs have been observed from passing passenger trains switching the adjacent steel mill yard at Xuanhua. These locomotives were intriguing as they always looked to be in particularly good external fiddle. On December 30th 2002, a small Rail Study Tours group visited the facility. The people from the steel mill were extremely friendly and welcoming, and a very successful visit was had. They said that they had not had previous western railfan visitors, but some Japanese had been there in the past.

18 steam engines currently on the roster, all SY 2-8-2s: Numbers: 0250*, 0299*, 0323*, 0356, 0552, 0559*, 0782, 0921*, 1104, 1121*, 1177, 1219*, 1541, 1528, 1599*, 1462*, and 1342. We saw 1113*, I think, although reported was engine 1133, I think there may have been a translation mix-up. 15 engines were reported to be in use that day. Locomotives with asterisks were actually seen, others reported by the mill transportation manager. All engines faced in a northwestish direction. All locomotives seen were in beautiful condition, with brass cabside plates and some even had polished brass boiler bands.2-6-2 0269 sitting at engine house, appears to be awaiting scrapping. The steel mill complex has tracks extending about a mile along the CR right of way on the Northwest side of the mill, and a large grade crossing was on the Southeast side of the mill. I think this was the end of the CR interchange, as we saw some CR diesels bring cars down this way." David Longman was here in January 2004 - his report includes three pictures since when Chris Yapp fund steam active in April with the YJ apparently to be shipped abroad for preservation.

There have been many visitors here since it was first reported, the east works may be off limits to foreign visitors but the west works are readily accessible. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Heilongjiang

Hegang: 

North of Jiamusi. A mainly electrified railway with SY steam (including Changchun 1998/9 locos) on passenger and some freights. The first report I saw was from Ted Talbot and Nicholas Pertwee in November 1999 and I was here in January 2001. Roger Blundell rode the trains in May 2001 and Derek Jenkins has sent a brief report from November 2001. Adrian Freeman was here in January 2002, Charles Towler in April 2002, Bill Alborough was here in October 2002 and Adrian Freeman in January 2004. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information. David Thomas was here in October 2004.

This is the passenger timetable courtesy of Bernd Seiler (ca February 2003):

hegangtt.jpg (32812 bytes)

Jixi

Florian Menius was here in March 2000 and Derek Jenkins has sent a report from November 2001. This area was occasionally visited for CNR steam but little has appeared about the JS/SY activity. There are maps of the system and a report on Benrd Seiler's site http://www.farrail.net (October 2002). David Thomas was here in October 2004.

Heibaoshan Coal Railway (Nenjiang-Heibaoshan)

JS still work freight on this local line in the far north. Florian Menius made a visit to Nenjiang in March 2002. Bruce Evans was here at the same time. There is a very full report available from John Agnew (January 2003). David Thomas was here in October 2003..

Qitaihe

Derek Jenkins has sent an initial report of SY/QJ activity from November 2001. Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002.

Shuangyashan:

East of Jiamusi. A coal railway with passenger trains, mainly operated by QJs with some SYs. The first report I saw was from Ted Talbot and Nicholas Pertwee in November 1999. Florian Menius was here in March 2000, Michael Rhodes was here in December 2000 and again in March 2001 while I visited in January 2001. Roger Blundell rode the trains in May 2001 and Derek Jenkins sent a brief report from November 2001. Michael Rhodes was here in December 2001, with DF1 diesels said to be arriving in quantity. Adrian Freeman was here in January 2002 but the diesels were hardly anywhere to be seen, but visitors with a Steam and Safaris tour in March 2002 found very little steam activity. Bernd Seiler tells me that he has heard that line working with steam will finish at the end of March 2002. It is not clear if some of the SYs will remain in use within the collieries.

Xilin Iron & Steel

Visited by Derek Jenkins in March 2001. This is a very small operation with about 4 SY. 

Xinyouyi-Baoqing

See CRJ 122. The line has at least 2 QJs.

Henan

Anyang Steelworks

Bernd Seiler says "Of interest are trains through the suburbs. Heavy polluted air in Anyang!" No other information available.

Luohe-Zhoukou:

QJs in use on this local line in May/June 2000. Peter Odell was here in April 2002 - check out Florian Menius's site - http://www.sy-country.co.uk.Expected to be dieselised during 2003 with only 5 QJs left according to Roy Bowden's November 2002 report and Chris Yapp was here in October 2003

Pingdingshan

Steam in use here on this coal mining system in May/June 2000 but not well detailed. The first major report dates from April 2002 from Peter Odell. Check out Florian Menius's site - http://www.sy-country.co.uk. Duncan Cotterill was here in September 2002. Reported to be operating normally by Roy Bowden in November 2002, see also Bruce Evans report at the same time, Tim Murray was here too in November 2002, Bernd Seiler in November 2002 and Michael Rhodes in the fog in December 2002. David Longman was here in December 2002, Adrian Freeman in January 2003, Greg Howell in March 2003, Chris Yapp in October 2003, Michael Rhodes in October 2003, David Thomas in October 2003, Derek Jenkins in November 2003.and Ameling Algra in December 2003.

There have been many visitors here since it was first reported, the east works may be off limits to foreign visitors but the west works are readily accessible. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Pingdingshan

Shangjie

Continental Railway Journal 135 reports that a line runs south and west form here which is SY operated. It is believed it serves limestone quarries for the cement works in the area. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Tangyin-Puyang

A lightly trafficed QJ line 85km north of Xinxiang. See CRJ 124.

Yima

David Thomas was here in October 2003. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information .

Yongcheng 

The Yongcheng coal railway (joins the Qing-Fu line, Quail map 6, line 15G) is reported to use a number of smart QJs (March 2004). 

See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Yu Zhou

Bernd Seiler says "There is a very short QJ-operated line from here (at the Xuchang ng railway) to the south to Pingdingshan. 3 QJ's, one on linework. It seems to be a separate railway, not part of the Pingdingshan mine administration." I do not think there are any reports on these pages of this line.

Hunan

Lei Yan - Xinshen

Gernot Gmeinhart first visited this line 80km north of Chenzhou with its SY operated passenger train in March 2001.

Xiangtan

Continental Railway Journal 135 reports that the steelworks here has a number of SY including at least two which were built at Tongling.

Inner Mongolia Province

Baotou Steel Works

Uses SYs and if you are lucky YJs. Derek Jenkins in November 2001, Peter Patt in April 2002 and Derek Jenkins in December 2003.

Baotou - Shenmu

This attracted only marginally fewer visitors than the Jitong line in recent years for double and triple headed QJs on long trains. The south end is largely dieselised, the rest should follow by June 2002 at the latest. Alexandre Gillieron and Hans Schaefer have sent some brief notes from October 2001. Recent reports come from Derek Jenkins in November 2001, Mike Tyack in December 2001 and Duncan Cotterill in December 2001. There are plenty more earlier ones if you look in the China section of my Asia pages. Peter Patt adds (22nd April 2002) "Shenmu steam not yet finished: QJ shunting and the odd line service, but not more than 5 engines under steam on the entire network per day. No news about plans to sell QJs to other lines - but 4 engines stored in excellent conditions at Dongsheng."

Jalainur Opencast Mine

A long way from anywhere but in its time the best opencast steam activity in the country with SYs all over the place. Now reported to be rather run down with its future in doubt - certainly it seems to operate like the forestry lines only in the winter. Read Michael Rhodes report from from December 2000 for some information. Simon Colbeck found it declining but still worth a visit in March 2002. Ian Jamieson was here in March 2003, Bill Alborough in October 2003 and David Thomas in October 2003. Bernd Seiler was here in September 2004.  Exceptionally I have added a report of my visit to Jalainur in November 2007, now updated with a November 2008 supplement.

Jitong

The most famous steam railway in the world, the last "main-line steam action" anywhere. Operated by QJs. Numerous reports on these web pages, too many to detail here - check my Asia page under China. If you haven't been here yet, you ought to go and if you have been here more than twice, how many of these other steam railways have you visited????? If you want to enrich a corrupt minority (the Jitong Mafia) then this is the place to head for..... Various estimates have appeared of how long steam will last, one March 2003 report claimed QJ overhauls would be discontinued from 1st May 2003 and steam would be gone by 1st May 2006. Frankly looking elsewhere, I would be surprised if it lasted that long. I visited here for a last look in October 2004, by which time the Jingpeng pass itself was partly dieselised.

Pingzhuang

This is an electrified coal mining system south of Chifeng which also uses JS and SY. There is some residual steam activity here as reported by Bruce Evans in December 2001. Previously Mike LaPlante visited in July 1999.  Simon Colbeck visited it in March 2002. Duncan Cotterill was here in September 2002 and again in December 2002. See also Hans Schaefer's site http://home.c2i.net/schaefer/chifengmines/ (link broken 5th April 2019).  Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002  and Chris Yapp in October 2003. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Qiqihar Steel Works 

Ted Talbot had half a visit in November 1999.

Yuanbaoshan

This is a coal mining system south of Chifeng with JS including a mixed train. Simon Colbeck visited it in March 2002 and Charles Towler in May 2002. Tim Murray was here in November 2002, Derek Jenkins in late 2002, Hugh Ballantyne in April 2003, Chris Yapp in October 2003, David Thomas in October 2003 and Michael Rhodes in February 2004. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Zhungeer (ZhunDong Railway)

The extension of the electrified Datong-Zhungeer line shown on page 5 of the Quail Atlas appeared to be still steam worked in October 2002 according to several Japanese visitors. Trains are single or double headed QJs and at least 14 are said to be here. Stephan Thierfelder visited in November 2003, Derek Jenkins in December 2003, Ameling Algra in December 2003, Michael Rhodes in February 2004 and Roy Laverick in February 2004. Note the poles are already up on most of this line.... David Thomas was here in October 2004.

Jiangsu

Xuzhou Mining Administration

CRJ 134 reports that JS 8346 was spotted hauling a coal train at Xuzhou on 12th January 2003. As far as I know there have been no internet reports of this system.

Zhenjiang Limestone Railway

This is an 8km long line from the limestone crushing plant at Weigang to the Yangtze at Gaozhi. It lies 16 km east of Zhenjiang. The line opened in 1972 and has 3 working JS locomotives. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Jinin

Meihekou Mining Bureau Railway

This 25 km SY-powered system is in Jilin Province just north of the Liaoning border. Louis Cerny has provided information current in May 2002. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information. David Thomas was here in October 2004

Liaoning

Anshan Steel Works

Historically THE steel works to visit with SYs in quantity, and the rarer YJ and even PL2 in use along with electrics. Steam among the blast furnaces and tippping slag was one of the highlights of a China trip. Now the slag tip is reported off-limits (allegedly a Japanese gricer got too close and was fried alive, but I have no confirmed detail), similarly the loco shed. This is very definitely a 'paid-for' activity but the local CITS office is used to handling such arrangements. There are a lot more visits here than there are reports as it is such a well known attraction. Reported by Stephan Menius in October 1999, Adrian Freeman in November 1999. Ulrich Nowak visited in February 2001, he was told there were only twenty two steam locomotives still at work but he saw nineteen including one YJ. There were probably more. Bernd Seiler was here in March 2002 and Bill Alborough found active steam in October 2002.

Benxi Steel Works

Visited by Derek Jenkins in March 2001. He reported the only steam activity was now SY with non-standard types out of use, but Ray Smith found one of the firelesses at work in April 2001. Visited by Michael Rhodes in March 2002. Bill Alborough was here in October 2002, Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002, Ian Jamieson in March 2003, Chris Yapp in October 2003 and Derek Jenkins in November 2003.

Dashiqiao Mineral Railway

This JS-powered line is about 30 km long with a branch about 5 km long. It starts at an interchange on the west side of the Dalian-Shenyang main line just north of the Dashiqiao station. Louis Cerny was here in May 2002. Reported to still have 2 JS active by Roy Bowden in November 2002.  Latest report is from John Agnew in January 2003.

Dengta-Huazi (Dengta Industrial Railway)

This line heads east from the Dalian-Shengyang mainline at Dengta, 28 km south of Shenyang. It has several SY. Louis Cerny was here in May 2002. Reported to be operating normally by Roy Bowden in November 2002.

Dongtonghua Steel Works

Surprisingly rarely visited as there was CNR JS activity on the adjacent main line. Ray Smith provided a list of SYs seen here in in April 2001

Fushun Coal Mine

A mainly electrified open cast system. Some residual SY activity reported by Stephan Menius in October 1999. Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002, Chris Yapp in October 2003 and Derek Jenkins in November 2003.

Fushun Steel Works.

Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002 and in November 2003..

Fuxin

A large open-cast pit worked mainly by electric locomotives, but there are trip workings and regular passenger services which are SY steam hauled. Leslie McAllister sent me a report of his trip to Fuxin, (1st April 1999), Ameling Algra was also here in March 1999 and so was Trevor Heath (27th April 1999). Johs. Damsgaard Hansen and Bo Lindhardtsen were here (19th April 1999), their report is the most comprehensive I have seen as far as this area is concerned. I was here in January 2000. Jan Willem van Dorp was here in September 2001 and Derek Jenkins in October 2001. Note also there are a couple of SY nearby at Qinghemen, Derek Jenkins's report of May 2001 which also covers Fuxin. Visited by Michael Rhodes in March 2002 and Charles Towler in April 2002. Bill Alborough was here in October 2002. Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002, David Longman was here in December 2002, David Thomas in October 2003, David Longman in December 2003 and Ameling Algra in December 2003. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Gongchangling Mining Railway

This JS and electric powered railroad is located at Anping (about 31 km from Luoyang on the Luoyang - Benxi line). Louis Cerny was here in May 2002. Reported to be operating normally by Roy Bowden in November 2002. John Agnew was here in January 2003 and David Longman in December 2003

Huludao Zinc Smelter

The Huludao Zinc smelter, which is located on the northern seacoast of the peninsula east of Huludao (formerly Jinxi), has at least one SY reports Louis Cerny (August 2003)

Nanpiao Mining Railway

This 100% steam powered system, located northwest of Jinzhou in Liaoning province, is a Tiefa-type operation which heads three directions out of Xiamiaozi (where the engine shed and interchange yard with CNR are located) through mountainous territory with steep grades and much curvature. The three lines head generally west to Sanjiazi (22 km), east to Linghe (18 km), and south to Hungjia (4 km), plus there are at least three spurs over one km long. This line was discovered by Louis Cerny in August 2003. A group was made unwelcome here in October 2003, but others notably Heinrich Hubbert and Roger Blundell had no problems in September/October 2003 as did I in December 2003. Duncan Cotterill was here at the same time as me, David Longman also in December 2003,   Ameling Algra in December 2003 and Adrian Freeman in January 2004. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information. David Thomas was here in October 2004

Tiefa

An extensive coal mining area with SY (including Tangshan 1999 locos) hauled passengers and freights. Adrian Freeman was here briefly in November 1999, I was here in January 2000. See also Duncan Cotterill's visit here in March 2000. Derek Jenkins visited in March 2001, Roger Blundell in May 2001, Jan Willem van Dorp in September 2001, Derek Jenkins (again) in October 2001, Michael Rhodes  in December 2001 and Adrian Freeman in January 2002. David Longman says they have their own railway based website (now including a photo gallery) - www.steam-locomotive.com. They are obviously trying to attract tourists! Derek Jenkins visited in late 2002 and Ian Jamieson in March 2003. Expect to see diesels start arriving here in mid-2003 but none reported by David Thomas in October 2003, Adrian Freeman in January 2004, Michael Rhodes in February 2004 and Roy Laverick in February 2004. By March 2004, the first diesels had arrived and reports spoke of an end to steam operation by Autumn 2004. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information, the passenger trains at least are still steam.

Weitoushan Coal Mine

This passenger operation is a short 3-or-4 km shuttle from the Weitoushan China Rail station to the Weitoushan Coal Mine "Company Town" using SY. Louis Cerny was here in May 2002. Florian Menius was here in January 2003.

Yangjiazhangzi - Huludao (Jinxi) Railway

This line operates from inside the city of Huludao (which was previously known as Jinxi) up through rural, hilly countryside into the mountains at Yangjiazhangzi, where its major customer, the Bohai Cement Company, is located. Louis Cerny reports that it has 4 JS and two SY - read his August 2003 report. A group was made welcome here in October 2003. Michael Rhodes was here in February 2004. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Nangxia Province

Dagu Railway

Bernd Seiler visited this QJ operated coal/oil line in November 2002 between Guyaozi and Daba which runs next to the desert and across the upper Yellow River. The roster includes high numbered 7205. Florian Menius was here in January 2003, Bernd was back in April 2003 and Stephan Thierfelder visited in November 2003. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information. David Thomas was here in October 2004.

Shaanxi Province

Tongchuan (East):

The last JF working of any significance is here. I first visited in March 1999, Bernd Seiler has been here twice (January 1999 and October 2000). Duncan Cotterill was here in January 2000 and Florian Menius in April 2000. Still present and in steam reported by Robert Hale in November 2001. Trevor Maxted spent 3 days here in January 2002. Bernd Seiler found three in use in March 2002, but on any day only one would be used for line work. John Middleton found 4 JFs at work in October 2002, Michael Rhodes got them in the sun in December 2002 but for Greg Howells in February 2003 there was the usual grey. Jim Hutler was there in April 2003, Chris Yapp in October 2003 Stephan Thierfelder visited in November 2003. In early January 2004, Alex Gillieron found 4 in use, with regular steam haulage to Wangshiba Mine, Roy Laverick was here in February 2004 and Andrew Fisher (March 2004) and Chris Yapp (April 2004) found them working too. See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information. David Thomas was here in October 2004, John Agnew and Jeremy Wainright were here in November 2004. There are persistent reports of their impending demise....

Tongchuan (West)

The same mining administration operates other systems, including lines to Yaoqu and Chenjiashan (the latter the site of a terrible mining accident in November 2004). John Agnew and Jeremy Wainright were here in November 2004.

Diantou Local Railway

80km north of Tongchuan, Florian Menius was here in April 2000, this line has QJs .... John Agnew and Jeremy Wainright were here in November 2004

Shanxi Province

Changzhi Iron and Steelworks

Bernd Seiler says "The line starts in Changzi Zhangyi, where the depot is. The connection to the CNR is in the north-western suburbs of Changzhi, not easy to find without a map. The line crosses  a river after some km in an attractive S-curve and goes through rural countryside. As far as I could go (the road was icy) the line was not very steep. JS's running chimney first eastwards and coming back tender first. There are two pairs of goods per day and no passenger service. Sundays less traffic. JS 6102 in service, 8356 serviceable, cold, 8121 in service, 6219, serviceable, cold, 5570 dumped, 8416 under repair, JF 116 (yes!) dumped." This report dates from December 2000. Bruce Evans has posted a reported of visits in early 2003.

This line was reported in Continental Railway Journal 135 (visit in December 2002). The same edition also reports on nearby Changcun coal mine (4 QJs of which 2 are active at any time) and Changzhi Bei Power Station where a steam locomotive was seen. At Lucheng, 11km east of Changzhi is a fertiliser plant reported to have SYs at work.

See the reports on Florian Menius's pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk/qjc/trips.htm for more information.

Linfen Steel Works

This a small steel works with several SY.  I was here in January 1998 and Bernd Seiler in November 2000.

Lishi

The main report I have seen of this new local railway with QJs is from Bernd Seiler in November 2000. Check out www.sy-country.co.uk.

Qinxian

The only report I have seen of this under construction local railway with QJs is from Bernd Seiler in November 2000.

Shuozhou - Shenchi Nan

Florian Menius was here in September 2000 on this relatively new line with double-headed QJs. Electrified largely and tender first uphill... 

Wuxiang

The only report I have seen of this this under construction local railway with QJs is from Bernd Seiler in November 2000.

Yinta-Hequ Local Line 

This has QJs which visitors see in steam but no one has yet found the time and energy to check this out properly. See Florian Menius's web pages for his report from October 2001. Bernd Seiler adds (May 2002) "They have only two QJ's in service. During the summer only one to two trains per month, in the winter season about two to four trains a week are common. The region is situated in a closed area for military reasons and you should have a permit. The ATP is obtainable from CITS Taiyuan, but the other necessary permit from the military police is not easy to get. Till now I couldn't find a way to get this permit."

Sichuan Province (see also Chongqing Province)

Chengdu Seamless Pipe Mill

Has a number of SYs. See Robin Gibbon's report from March 1999.

Hanwang

Bruce Evans found the previously reported grimy JF4040 here in April 1999.

Longchang to Luzhou local railway

This operates some QJs. Bernd Seiler reported on this in November 2000

Steelworks at Jiangyou and Daxian

Bruce Evans suggested (April 1999) these may be worth investigating, with possible further GJ activity. 

Tianjin Special Area 

Tianjin Local Railway

A QJ worked line reported by Laurie Ball in May 2000.

Xinjiang

Hami/Sandaoling Coal Mine

Reports within the Steam_in_China newsgroup of steam activity here are certainly true, with a Jalainur type big pit. A report of a July 2004 visit is now available on Florian Menius's web pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk. John Agnew and Jeremy Wainright were here in November 2004

To which can be added this comment by old China hand Zhang Xin Sheng:

Hami/Sandaoling: Northwest, 85K; 
Hotel: Sandaoling Hotel;
Coal Yard to Liushuquan station: 13K where the CNR is connected with!
Busy line with 24 JSs + 4 SYs!
Yes, most of the trains working with tender first between Coal Pit and Coal yard!
ONLY on the line from Coal Yard / Liushuquan Station / Coal Yard with NORMAL runnings!

Holidays: Normally the company has only 1 holiday in a year! It depends on the temperature, as July and August are 2 of the hottest months locally, in 2004, they chose July for 20 days of Holidays! They returned to work on August 01, 2004!

Shankou - Yamusan Mineral Railway 

There is a JS operated 35 km long line some 91km south-east of Hami. John Agnew and Jeremy Wainright were here in November 2004

Yunnan

Panzihua & Kunming Steelworks

Check out www.sy-country.co.uk.

Zhejiang

Shaoxing Iron Ore Railway

I visited this 13km long SY operation in November 2004.


The following is a list of former steam lines which will, of course, grow rapidly in the future.

Heilongjiang

Huanan

Reported by Bernd Seiler. "Huanan (Mudanjiang - Jiamusi-line) to Xiangyang, 31 km long and absolute outstanding. Two pairs of trains daily, allocation two QJs, I didn't hear a QJ so hard working since Nancha was dieselised. This limestone railway starts in the railway station at Huanan and leave it southwards." Reported dieselised at the end of December 2002, see Florian Menius's web pages http://www.sy-country.co.uk.

Liaoning

Beitai Steel Mill

On the Liaoyang-Benxi line at km 55. Local information is that 19 SYs are active here. Louis Cerny was here in May 2002. Bill Alborough was here in October 2002. Reported to be operating normally by Roy Bowden in November 2002. David Longman was here in December 2002 and I followed in February 2003. Reported (incorrectly) all diesel by mid-2004.

Haicheng (south of Anshan)

The line to Xiyuan was believed to be SY operated. Louis Cerny's report makes it clear it is now (May 2002) diesel operated.

Kaiyuan

Laurie Ball's report on the local line to Xifen/Anmintun is the only one I have from May 2000. I have been told informally that this may have been dieselised in October 2001.

CRJ 118 reported that at Qinghe, 12km east of Kaiyuan there is a large power station with 4SY and 2QJ, the latter being used to haul trains to and from Kaiyuan. Louis Cerny tells me (June 2002) that his local information is that it is 'still steam', but by August 2003 it was reported dieselised.

Shenyang Local Railway (Hushitai - Xintaizi)

I went here in December 1995 (pre-internet pages), there have been reports that this coal/passenger local line had closed but in passing Laurie Ball saw SYs at each end in May 2000... Bruce Evans saw 2 SYs at work here in March 2002, one of which was on a single coach passenger train. Louis Cerny reports it all diesel in August 2003.

Tangwangshan-Pailou Local Railway

This SY-powered line is about 20 km long and heads east from the Dalian-Shenyang line at Tangwangshan (8 km south of Haicheng), going via Bali into the mountains to reach Pailou, where the shed is located. Louis Cerny was here in May 2002. Reported to be dieselised by Roy Bowden in November 2002.


Rob Dickinson

Email: webmaster@internationalsteam.co.uk