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Steam in China


by Gernot Gmeinhart



Busy as ever. We saw 5 diesel, but most of the trains were steam. A very nice photospot is an old tower (water tank?) at mine 7, which is perfect for the afternoon passenger train with the skyline of Pindingshan in the backround (my favorite PDS-shot!).
We also saw one QJ 7186 in steam with heavy trains on the "main"line from mine 5, 7 to Tianshuang Yard in the afternoon and to mine 13 in the evening.

According to earlier reports we also can recommend:
- early morning: 7.40-passenger train in Zhongxin station and the curve at mine 7, the busy action in Tianshuang Yard
- late morning: 8.50-passenger train from mine 13 in Qilidian (very nice 1km after the turn-off in Renshiguang) and at the lake
- midday and afternoon: around mine 2
- afternoon: mine 7 with afternoon-passenger train from the tower
- late afternoon: Tianshuang Yard

Xingjang brickworks

Lovely as ever. No problems with staff, security guards etc.


Bad news. Due to a train accident on 12th October the line is closed by the local authorities. The staff told us that they don't believe that the line will be reopend (security problems). Traffic by trucks increased heavyly.

I hope that the CITS-information is correct and the line is reopened now. We stayed in Yinghao on 19th and 20th October and saw no trains. We asked the staff in Xiangyang for the reasons and they told us the closure due to the accident. They couldn't (or wouldn't) give us further details about the accident except the date (12th October). They said that the local authority will decide to continue or to close within 14 days. Fact was that we saw no locos in steam, the track was rusty and rubbish layed on the track.


Staff told us, that opencast is defenitly closed and the railway will now build a new line in the opencast mine (?). We saw 8275 and 8276 working with sand trains. Because of the rain and the fog we could not see what they really did. At 9am and 3pm both locos returned for staff change. In the workshed 8092 was under repair and 8087 cold. 5937, 6215 were dead, SY 1419 also dead.

Dagu Railways

Sad news. 2 brandnew diesel (DF4) arrived in October. We saw one diesel (DF4DD 0052, build 2005) on two days with downhill trains at midday time. Good news from overhauled and fresh painted QJ 7205, which is in use since 23th October (Guyaozi pilot). Other locos: 7195, 7061, 7200, 7194 (all under steam), 7036 (in shed), 1465, 6545, 6832 (oou).

We spent 3 days (21th - 23th October). That is necessary because of the light traffic. We saw only two daylight uphill trains (8.00 and 14.30 from Lingwu) and three downhill trains (10.00, 12.00 and 14.00 from Guyaozi). Best train is the morning 8.00 train. On 21th and 22th October this train was in time, but on 23th October 2 hours delayed. On 22th October we also saw an oil train (9.00 from Guyaozi to Daba). In Guyaozi every train stop here to change the loco with the Guyaozi pilot. After this operation the trains continue to the first coal mine (banked) or to the new coal mine on the new 12 km long line south-eastwards.


24th October until 26th October: C2 41, 43 and 44 working day and night. Latest timetable follows soon.


Very busy system! A good present for the loco staff are foreign coins (old and new ones).
Chengzihe: 0237, 0590, 0733, 1018, 1351, 1437, 1544 working
Donghaikueg: 0639, 1545 working
Hengshan: 0341, 0746, 0804, 1344 (best condition), 1369. On 10am we saw 0746+0341 with empties to Zhongxin and 1344 followed to Zhangxin 10 minutes.
Didao: 0407, 0950, 1205 (best condition), 1446. The most spectacular traffic around Didao Hebei, very busy! Best in the morning after sunrise. Very nice also is Didao CNR before sunset.

Gernot Gmeinhart

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2005, Gernot Gmeinhart: e-mail: g.gmeinhart@ipe.co.at