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Price : 5 Y
Price : 8Y
Price : 10Y
Reason must be - no doubt - the increasing number of fast highways and
express buses. The recently opened "JingShen Expressway" (Beijing-Shenyang)
for example enables buses to cover the 700kms in just over 7 hours which is
even faster than the fastest CNR Superexpress ("Tekuai") train.
Currently, the "JingCheng Expressway" (Beijing-Chengde) is under construction. It will be completed by 2004 and cut the travel time between Chengde and Beijing to 2 hours only! With a travel time of 4.5 to 5.5 hours, rail service between Chengde and Beijing will be threatened seriously ...
|Dec 28th||01, 03|
|Jan 10th, Jan 27th||01, 04|
Locos seen a Beijing Iron∧Steel :
Dec 28th, train 2559 : Beijing Nan 21:33 - Chifeng 07:15 (YW)
|JS||6066(dumped), 6246(ld), 6544(ld), 8216(ld), 8218(ld, repair), 8246(hd), 8249(ld), 8250(ld), 8418(ld, oou)|
Stayed at the railway hotel some 150 along the main road on the left side : 60Y for 3 persons, hot shower available on floor.
JiTong seems to have some troubles with their railcar sets. Around
NewYear the Huhehaote-Daban/Xilinhaote service was cancelled several times
at short notice. Furthermore, the Daban bound railcar used to be a couple
of hours late.
On CNR track between Jining Nan and Huhehaote, the railcar did not operate at scheduled speed (100km/h or 120km/h). Top speed was some 60km/h thus creating 1 hour delay between JiningNan and Huhe.
At Tianshan/Chabuga, a new passenger train was announced : Tongliao-Daban-JiningNan-Baotou !
Accomodation: The settlement around Baiqi station offers the following accomodation :
Jan 1st, caboose of freight train : Baiqi 16:15-Haoluku 20:20
Jan 20th, train 6052 : Chabuga 16:24-Daban 20:03
Hotels : I recommand to avoid the railway hotel near Daban station now! Staff
has become abstrusive and the prices demanded were beyond imagination ! They wanted 200Y
for a 3-bed room even though the shower did not have warm water.
I recommand to take one hotel in town (e.g. near the bus station). There we paid 90Y for 3 persons, had warm shower and very friendly staff!
Getting to the station is no problem as urban bus No.1 operates frequently (every 5min or so) between 07:00 and 18:00. Flat fare is 1Y. A taxi should cost 5Y. So, it is still very much cheaper to stay in town!
Another alternative may be the 3 lüdians/ binguans just east of Daban station square. The large building in front of the station houses a bathhouse, too.
|QJ||6214(dumped), 6304, 6579(nd, dumped, decorated), 6633(B, passenger), 6636(H), 6849(H), 6850(H), 6854(H), 6987(B), 6997(H), 7043(H), 7052(B), 7114(nd, Baiqi pilot), 7136(H), 7138(H), 7139(H), 7140(B)|
|QJ||6110(H), 6230(H), 6301(C), 6517(H), 6577(H), 6630(H), 6631(C), 6638(H), 6639(H, later nd, Daban pilot), 6763(H), 6778(C), 6828(H), 6840(H, passenger), 6851(H), 6876(H), 6878(H), 6882(H), 6891(C), 6911(C, passenger), 6925(C), 6978(C), 6981(H), 6986(H), 6992(H, passenger), 7007(H), 7009(H,C), 7010(C), 7012(H), 7037(C), 7040(H), 7081(C), 7112(H), 7119(C), 7137(H)|
|QJ||6729, 6773, 6853, 6988, 7038(passenger), 7104(passenger), 7163, 7164|
|DF5||1436(Tongliao), 1519(Tongliao), 1694(Tongliao)|
Jan 23rd, bus : Daban 14:00 - Chifeng 16:50 (25Y, modern and confortable bus)
Jan 24th : Yuanbaoshan again
Jan 24th, train K650 : Chifeng 18:40 - Shenyang 05:18 (YW)
In my opinion, ZhunDong tielu is the best new discovery since 1996 when JingPeng was discovered ! Landscape is great, hard working trains and gradients in both directions almost guarantee great shots if you are lucky enough to have suitable trains.
|Dongsheng||07:00, 07:50, 08:30, 09:00..(60min)..12:00, 12:30, 13:00, 13:25, 14:00, 15:00, 16:00, 16:40, 17:20|
|Baotou||08:00, 08:30, 09:30, 10:30, 14:30, 15:00|
(terminus of ZhunDong railway)
Additionally, there is a passenger train along the electrified Zhungeer-Datong line between Zhoujiawan and Datong. It consist of 4 YZ+1 XL only, is hauled by a non-CNR DF4B (I saw DF4 3863) and almost empty! If you want to cover the track Fengzhen-Zhoujiawan, do not wait too long! The train must be hot candidate for cancellation ! The timetable in April 2001 was as shown below. Expect some retiming +/- 20 minutes as I saw the train arriving at Zhoujiawan not before 20:05 (Acknowledgment to Robin Gibbons for translating into Pinyin).
(Zhungeer DaZhun Station)
(Yellow River Bridge)
According to an advertisement, "Yanzhuang" belongs to "Datong City" but I have no idea, where its
excact loction is... Probably it is a suburb or district of Datong city.
It may be easier to board the train at Danzhouying which must be quite close to Fengzhen CNR station.
|Zhungeer Map (© by Bernd Seiler)|
|Zhungeer Map (Chinese Version)|
Do not try to reach tunnel 2 (T2) from the Dongsheng road! You won`t find the railway line! A taxi to Haizita station costs 50-60Y and it takes some 45minutes to get there whereas a train needs only 20 minutes (so, forget any chasing !). At its closest point (near Hazita), the railway is some 1.5km away from the Dongsheng road ...
Pattern of operation is quite easy : A train of empties from Datong arrives at Zhoujiawan(ZhunDong) station, hauled by a SS3 electric of "DaZhun Tielu". As electric trains usually have more than 60 wagons, the empty train has to be split into 2 parts. The two parts depart in close sequence and go to the coal mine at Xiyingzi (each train QJ-double headed). Depending on the number of empty coal wagons, additional QJs are sent to Xiyingzi as light engine workings and follow the empty trains.
As soon as all wagons are loaded at Xiyingzi, a "procession of loaded trains" starts: 2 QJs and 24-26 fulls make up one part of the train. A loaded train which has got less than 24 wagons or is single headed only indicates the end of the "procession". The first part of a loaded train is back at Zhoujiawan some 16-20 hours after the departure of the first part of the empty train. At Zhoujiawan, the parts of the loaded train (usually 3 parts) are combined to one long train again and depart behind SS3 towards Datong.
The dispatcher at Zhoujiawan(ZhunDong) knows the timings of loaded trains some hours in advance. But he does not know
when empty trains will run because he does not know when the next electric train from "DaZhun Tielu" is to arrive ...
Usually, there are only 1 or 2 electric trainswithin 24 hours. So, some 3-4 empty and 3-5 loaded trains along ZhunDong appear within 24 hours.
Due to the pattern of operation, you need some luck to get trains in daylight.
|ZhunDong Tielu||QJ||6563, 6565, 6573, 6613, 6907, 6946, 7054, 7058, 7067|
|QJ (dumped)||6555, 6827, 6944, 6995|
|DaZhun Tielu||SS 3||0673|
I did not see the 14th QJ (QJ 6759) of ZhunDong Tielu.
I was very lucky. On Jan 3rd at 12:30, I arrived at Zhoujiawan bus terminal with a bus from Huhehaote. I went
to ZhunDong Tielu station by moutche ("5Y"). There, I was welcomed by 13 QJs : 9 under steam and 4 dumped ones. 6 out of the
9 steamed ones were preparing to depart soon. 68 empty coal wagons waited for their QJs, too. So, two double headed trains for Xiyingzi
of empties (44 and 23 wagons respectively) departed at 13:50 and 14:45. So, within 2.5 hours after my arrival, I had had my first 2 uphill trains...
... Later, 2 additional QJs folowed the trains light engine (departing at 16:30).
Next morning, I inquired about trains at Zhoujiawan ZhunDong: 3 loaded trains were scheduled to arrive until noon : two double headed ones with 25 and 26 wagons each and a single headed one with 9 wagons. So, I immediately took a taxi and went to Haizita. The third train was back at Zhoujiwan by 12:20. At 14.20, a 60 wagon freight left Zhoujiawan hauled by SS3 0673. No more emties were on the system with 12QJ out of the 13 QJs seen being on shed again (1 QJ was still out on the line with a permanent way train). No more train movement were forcast until sunset as no empty wagons were available and no electric train scheduled to arrive. So, I took the 15:55 bus back to Huhehaote
Jan 4th, train 4607 : Huhehaote 21:30-WuhaiXi 07:02
Line work between WuhaiXi-Jilantai is still 100% QJ. Unfortunately, there were no trains at all other than the daily mixed train. So I had only 1 (downhill) train during daylight only per day. Because of this reason, I did not go to Benjing and Jilantai as planned initially. The mixed had the same QJ every day (QJ 7056) and operated on time.
|QJ||7053, 7056, 7057|
By the way : Wuhai City is one of the "racist towns" where foreigners are forced to go the expensive "Wuhai Binguan" some 2 km from the station. After having been refused by 2 hotels close to the station, I was invited by an muslim family from Xinjiang province to stay with them. 5Y and honest people instead of 200Y for an anonymus hotel room. "The author beats the system ..."
For the other night, I had the hotel next to WuhaiXi station ("Renhe Binguan"), which turned out to be the best cared for and cleanest hotel I ever had in China. The "suite" costs 200Y but was bargained down to 150Y - it is worth every single 1Y spent !
Jan 7th, train K43 : Wuhai 05:45 - Qingtongxia 09:15
|CNR, Yinchuan Depot||SS3||0413, 4210, 4283, 4313, 4319|
Here, wagons are exchanged between CNR and DaGu Tielu. There is always
at least one QJ under steam at Daba as it serves as pilot for both CNR
and DaGu station. Furthermore, it hauls the wagons between Daba Station and the Power Station Exchange Yard.
A servicing point for steam locos is situated at the northern end of Daba station, a wye exists near the power station exchange yard.
The DaGu line leaves Daba northwards, climbs onto a dam and crosses over
the Qingtonxia-Yinchuan CNR line about 1 km north of Daba station. For the next 45 km, the line never reaches
ground level again. It is always onto a high dam and crosses through boring, flat landscape. Given its potential for taking photos
the section Daba-Lingwu is one of the worst lines, I have seen so far !
"Highlight" is the Yellow River bridge at km 30 but not very great, too. Forget this railway between Daba and Lingwu !
Jan 7th, train 2587 : Daba 16:37 - Qingtongxia 16:55
The section offers steep grades climbing with 14%o towards Guyaozi.
Around km 60 a kind of highland is reached. The road comes in sight again and is crossed near a nice viaduct some 6 km short of Guyaozi. Some areas with sand dunes are passed again. Another bridge is situated just 1 km short of Guyaozi.
Guyaozi has got a medium sized yard with some 7 or 8 tracks. The large
depot area is just next to the yard.
From Guyaozi, the branch to the the coal mine extends eastwards for some 3km. Unfortunately, this steeply graded section is lined by barbed wire fences on both sides of the tracks. So, it is almost unaccesible and not very photgenic, too!
Railway staff was extremely friendly and very keen to see the third "waiguoren" being interessted in their railway (the other 2 visited Guyaozi in November : Bernd Seiler & Alexander Wesserer).
Lingwu : Has got several hotels, too.
Very strange are taxi drivers in this area! Both times I took a taxi, the first price
quoted by the driver was lower than what I had expected to be a fair price! I have not
experienced similar negotiations during all my travels in China! For example:
a) "Motuche" (3-wheel taxi) from Qingtongxia station to Daba station, road distance some 20km. Usual fare would have been some 20-25Y, the driver wanted 15Y only. Finally, we found an agreement that 20Y are ok.
b) "Xiali Taxi" (Tianjin 7100) for full day Qingtongxia-Guyaozi and return, some 200km in total. Fare quoted by driver : 150Y only!
Very, very unusual behaviour for Chinese taxi drivers but not unwelcome at all !
In addition to locos mentioned by Bernd, I saw QJ 7194 and QJ 7200, too. As Bruce Evans already said, QJ 7061, 7194, 7195 and 7205 have been aquired from Tianjin Local Railway in autuum 2002. According to notes on their tenders, they were overhauled at Tianjin between Sept and October 2002.
DaGu railway is quite interessting railway concerning their locos, as you can see both very new and quite old QJs there.
Locos (under steam, unless indicated, locos seen in bold letters):
|DaGu Tielu||QJ||1465, 2690, 2869, 6545, 7036, 7061(cold), 7194(cold), 7195(cold), 7200, 7205|
This makes 10 QJs. So, one engine of DaGu Tielu is still unknown ...
Pride of the railway is QJ 7205 with brass boiler rings and decorations around the smokebox
door. QJ 7205 is in immaculate condition.
I was advised at least three times by different railway employees that I should take a photo of 7205! At Guyaozi depot, I met a DaGu Railway official who invited me to have a closer look at the locomotives ! He (I had not asked for it !) suggested that I should go inside the shed where QJ 7205 was under repair !
It was the first in China I heared the word "piaoliang" (=beautiful) in connection with locomotives by railway staff. Usually, this word is exclusively used for "human beauty", e.g. nice girls etc.
3 years ago, I remember to have been laughed at by railway staff at Da`an Bei, when I said QJ 6809 ("Olympia loco") would be "piaoliang"... They only accepted "haokan" (="beautiful" in a rather general meaning) for 6809.
QJ 7061 : This loco used to work into Baotou but I think it was actually a Hohhot depot loco - until the end of mainline steam there around 1996. It then seems to have gone to the Tianjin Local Railway and following dieselisation of this system has returned west to the GuDa Local Railway.
Jan 8th, train 2004 : Qingtongxia 19:27 - Baotou Dong 04:59
Jan 9th, train 7465 : Baotou Dong 06:53 - Baotou Xi 07:38
Jan 9th, train 4608 : Baotou 13:53 - Salaqi 14:56
|Baotou Steelworks||SY||1521, 1676|
|DF4||4219, 4241, 4243, 4251, 4274, 4327, 4328, 4339, 4340, 5126|
|DF5||1568, 1569, 1805, 1806, 1857, 1929|
|DF4||1407, 1422, 3383, 3644, 7055, 7056, 7289, 7293, 7294, 7300, 7305|
|DF4D||3104, 3106, 3156, 3157, 3168, 3171(2002-built)|
Jan 9th, train 2003 : Salaqi 15:57-Baotou Dong 16:26
Jan 9th, train K264 : Baotou Dong 20:27-Beijing 10:20 (still hauled by NY7 diesels between Kangzhuang and Beijing).
Jan 10th : Dahuichang again, where I met Ameling and Hans.
Jan 11th, train T47 : Beijing 16:00 - Harbin 04:29
Jan 12th, train K265 : Harbin 05:49 - Yabuli 09:09
Weihe 2002 was better than 2000 or 2001 - even without the passenger train!
Log traffic levels were incredible with numerous loaded trains during daylight. Out
of the 7 days we spent at Weihe, 3 days offered no less than 5 loaded trains during
daylight, one day even 6 loaded trains! Additionally, there were
between 3 and 5 empty trains during daylight.
Further improvements :
The additional log traffic more than compensated the lack of passenger trains!
If you haven`t been to Weihe, buy your air ticket tomorrow! Such great forestry railway operation will never come back. Nowhere in the world !
|Weihe Forestry Railway||C2||030, 033, 034, 035, 053, 054, 055|
|C2 (oou)||032 (yes! 032 is locked in the shed at Weihe!)|
|CNR||DF 4||1259(Yi), 1516(Yi), 1925(Yi), 1973(Yi), 1975(Yi), 1979(Yi), 5142(Harbin), 7108(Yi), 7109(Yi)|
|DF 4 D||3095(Sankeshu)|
|DF 8||0046, 0098 (all Mudanjiang)|
Jan 18th, train 2018 : Weihe 23:01 - Tieling 08:50
As reported previously, some passenger trains have been cancelled. Complete timetable of remaining passenger trains is as shown in the tables below.
Locomotives seen in Shenyang/Benxi area
|Tiefa Coal Railway||SY||0435, 0665, 0860, 1255, 1683, 1749, 1751|
|CNR||SS4||0558(Su), 0566(Su), 0568(Su), 0604(Su), 0608(Su), 6062(Su), 6063, 6089, 7003, 7038|
|DFH3||0026, 0031, 0047, 0050 (all Benxi)|
|DFH5||0057, 0105, 0312 (all Benxi)|
|DF4||1037(Benxi), 1040(Benxi), 1041 (Benxi), 1043(Benxi), 1046(Benxi), 1051(Benxi), 1052(Benxi), 1067(Benxi), 1432(Benxi), 1530(Sh.Xi), 1673(Benxi), 1771, 2348(Benxi), 2433(Zhengjiatun), 4315(Su), 4361(Jinzhou), 6200(Sh.Xi)7170(Su)|
|DF5||1028(Benxi), 1423(Benxi, orange), 5005(Benxi, orange), 5006(Benxi, orange)|
|DF7||5156(Su), 5342(Siping), 5483(Siping)|
Jan 19th, train 2219 : Tieling 20:47 - Zhengjiatun 00:06, lüdian at Zhengjiatun (10Y/person)
Jan 20th, train K698 : Zhengjiatun 05:30 - Tongliao 07:20
Jan 20th, bus : Tongliao 08:30 - Tianshan 12:00 (fare 24Y), see above
Back at Shenyang on Jan 25th, 05:18
Jan 25th, train 6649 : Shenyang 06:19 - Waitoushan 07:32
SY 1012 operates a passenger shuttle service with 6 return trips per day between
Waitoushan CNR station and "KuangWaiKeCheXian" (literally : passenger
track outside mine) near the coal mine and close to the city of
Waitoushan. Trains to "KuangWaiKeCheXian" are funnel first. Length of the line : appr. 3 km.
The train consists of 6 old style coaches with longitudinal seats inside : each two example of hard-seat coach types YZ21, YZ30 and YZ95 - a fine sight !
Fare is 0.5Y, pay on the train.
The complete timetable of the passenger shuttle is:
The whole system is electrified - except for the platform
track at Waitoushan CNR. This explains the use of the SY. The rest of the system is worked by electrics.
LEW (Henningsdorf) built electrics of both EL1 (4axle) and
EL2 type (4axle+4axle) are used. The depot for both the electrics and SY1012 is situated just next to Kuangwaikechexian station.
A steep electric line climbs onto a nearby mountain with at least 2 reversals (see map). EL2s tend to serve the "mountain line" with the smaller EL1s working the flater sections.
Most coal gondolas used on the system are lettered "Waitoushan-Benxi-Nanfen". So, coal probably goes both to Benxi steelworks and to another industry located at Nanfen (which is quite likely to have some SYs, too...).
A motuche taxi from the city/coal mine to the CNR station costs some 5Y.
|SY||1012 (Tangshan 6/73)|
|EL 1 (LEW)||11(1975 built), 20, 21|
Conclusion : Waitoushan is well worth a short side trip when being around Benxi or Beitai.
Jan 25th, train 6637 : Waitoushan 10:16 - Shiqiaozi 10:25
Jan 25th, train 4280 : Benxi 13:00 - Beitai 13:22 (DFH3 0050)
As said before, numerous engines are in superb condition.
|SY||0322, 0792, 0864, 1005, 1054, 1077, 1131, 1514, 1567, 1577, 2019|
At Liaoyang, I stayed at the railway hotel just north of the station (80Y).
Weather forecast for the next 2 days was snowfall. Indeed, next morning, there was heavy snowfall! So, I cancelled my trip
to Dengta, Dashiqiao etc. and had a lie in. Around 09:00, I went to the ticket office and asked for a ticket to Beijing :
unavailable, as Chinese New Year was only 6 days ahead !
By accident, I saw a girl in front of the station advertising an express bus to Beijing (130Y). It departed at 10:00, was very empty (loading level less than 30%) and confortable. So, I travelled back to Beijing by bus : some 700km in 8 hours using the new ShenJing Expressway.
Once in Beijing, it had clear and cloudless sky again.
|DFH5||0036(Nankou, oou), 0051(Nankou), 0368(Beijing)|
|DF4||0451, 0640(Nankou), 0645(Nankou), 0646(Nankou), 0651(Chengde), 0675(Nankou), 0676(Chengde), 0678(Chengde), 0707(Chengde), 1030(Chengde), 1033(Chengde), 1659(Nankou), 1662(Nankou), 1937(Chengde), 2601(Tianjin), 2645(Tianjin), 4015(Fengtai), 6097(Nankou), 9008(Chengde), 9217(Chengde), 9283(decorated)|
|DF4D||0034(Tianjin), 3114(Tianjin), 3115(Tianjin), 3150(Tianjin)|
|DF11||0015, 0023, 0024, 0061, 0062, 0113, 0126, 0142, 0143, 0145, 0316|
|BJ||3055, 3063, 3086, 3088, 3105, 3123, 3128, 3145, 3241 (all Chengde)|
Dresden, Feb 8th 2002
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