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Steam & Excursion > Waiting At Whitehorse - 2 Late Built Steam Lokies WP&Y!


Date: 11/16/13 05:43
Waiting At Whitehorse - 2 Late Built Steam Lokies WP&Y!
Author: LoggerHogger

The year is 1955 and basking in the sunshine at Whitehorse in the then Yukon Territory are 2 of the last narrow gauge steam locomotives built by Baldwin for a U.S. railroad.

After WWII the production of steam locomotives nearly dried up as the U.S. railroads were rapidly turning to new diesel power. Narrow gauge railroads themselves were normally not ordering any power as their lines were rapidly shrinking in size or being abandoned all together.

An exception to this was the 3'gauge White Pass & Yukon Ry of Alaska. They actually ordered their last 2 steam locomotives in May of 1947 in the form of 2-8-2 #72 and #73, the second of which is shown here. This new steam power was deemed necessary because the diesel locomotive manufacturers had yet to come out with a design for narrow gauge diesel power that could meet the demands of the WP&Y.

By the time this photo was taken in 1955, change was in the air. In June of the year before, GE had shipped 2 1,400HP diesel electric units to the WP&Y in the form of #90 and #91. These units would start the slow conversion to diesel power that would not be complete until 1963 when the last of the WP&Y steam locomotives were finally retired.

Fortunately, both of the engines shown here survive and operate today. #70 is at Dollywood in operation there as their #70 "Cinderella". #73 was retained by the WP&Y and has been restored to operation there on the same rails she was first built to serve on in 1947.


Martin



Edited 6 time(s). Last edit at 11/16/13 12:13 by LoggerHogger.




Date: 11/16/13 06:26
Re: Waiting At Whitehorse - 2 Late Built Steam Lokies W
Author: 4-12-2

Nice, Martin, and thanks for the info.

John Bush
Omaha



Date: 11/16/13 10:09
Re: Waiting At Whitehorse - 2 Late Built Steam Lokies W
Author: Labby

That is a cool shot! Last time I was there that engine house was still in use, but the boat was long gone. Believe today they don't run into town this far. Thanks for sharing the picture.



Date: 11/16/13 13:09
Re: Waiting At Whitehorse - 2 Late Built Steam Lokies W
Author: randyr

Martin:

Thank you for all of your posts,I have really enjoyed them. Especially the recent one of D&RGW K-37 499, and this post of the WP&Y 2-8-2s. Here are a couple shots of WP&Y 73 at the Skagway White Pass depot in June of 2011.

Randy in PHX



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/16/13 16:26 by randyr.






Date: 11/16/13 13:31
Re: Waiting At Whitehorse - 2 Late Built Steam Lokies W
Author: LoggerHogger

Randy,

I am glad you like the posts. I really love your photos of #73. That is one steam operation that I want to get to one of these days.

Martin



Date: 11/17/13 07:55
Re: Waiting At Whitehorse - 2 Late Built Steam Lokies W
Author: YG

Sure nice to see two locomotives of this era surviving…and operating!

Steve Mitchell
http://www.yardgoatimages.com



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