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Western Railroad Discussion > Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…


Date: 06/02/23 15:35
Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: PasadenaSub

Two weeks ago, my wife and I rode the White Pass & Yukon out of Skagway, AK on a morning trip to White Pass Summit and return around the balloon loop there (barely in British Columbia, Canada).  I was pleasantly surprised they let passengers out onto the car platforms for photos, so I borrowed my wife's superior iPhone 14 Pro for some videos.  

I was amazed at how fluidly the railroad functions on any given day in the summer tourist season.  Trains pick up passengers either from the downtown station, as well as right from the spurs practically adjacent to docked cruise ships. Trains seemed to run in fleets and pass along the way without needing to stop, thanks to long passing sidings and a modern signaling system.  Our ship, Carnival Miracle, was docked closest to the rocky shore, where recent rockslides had caused problems on the pier.  As a result, we had to take a short bus ride to the end of the pier in order to board our train.

Here are 3 videos and several images from the morning of 5/19 on the WP&Y.  I believe the meet sequence in the first video was at the siding just east of Heney.  The bridge and tunnel sequence was at the 2,715' bore near the old trestle at MP 18.6.  The last video was back at Skagway at the downtown station.  Our train had pulled into the stub-end station for a stop and then would back up to where we had boarded.  It would then be ready for the next departure from the furthest east spur.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 06/02/23 16:32 by PasadenaSub.

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Date: 06/02/23 15:38
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: PasadenaSub

4-5) A few pics out the window of our car, passing the railroad's shops in Skagway.  Visible in the 2nd pic are shovel-noses 91 (84-ton) and 98 (85-ton), along with DL535E 109 in the background.



Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 06/02/23 16:35 by PasadenaSub.






Date: 06/02/23 15:42
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: PasadenaSub

6) A few more from the downtown Skagway station after we detrained.  DL535E 109 spotted another train, and then ran light back to the shops area.  Showing up shortly after, WP&Y 3003 (NRE model E3000CC-DC) then coupled on for the next departure up the pass.

7) A still pic of the same train we rode as in my video, with WP&Y 3006 shoving the train out of the station towards the east dock trackage..

8) Another look at WP&Y 3003 and train ready to depart on the far track.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/02/23 16:36 by PasadenaSub.








Date: 06/02/23 15:44
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: PasadenaSub

9) For Flare Friday - another look at 3003 and train in Skagway.  Very interesting locomotives that NRE built for the railroad.

10-11) A look at the stuffed and mounted 2-6-0 52 , caboose, and snowplow on display near the station area next to Broadway.
 



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/02/23 16:25 by PasadenaSub.








Date: 06/02/23 15:50
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: PasadenaSub

12) A building in downtown Skagway with a nice mural featuring the railroad.

13) Looking south along Broadway, a vintage bus takes another round of passengers on their tour of Skagway.

14) Before leaving our cruise ship, MV Carnival Miracle, that morning - a view forward from our starboard-side balcony on Deck 5.  There were 7 Shovelnose diesels (84,85, and 86 tonners) in very fresh paint seemingly stored on our dock.  I'm hoping they were there just for publicity, but due to their position (near the rockslide netting) - I'm hoping they weren't just placed there as a further barrier against the slides onto the dock.

Thanks for looking.  My first visit to Alaska left me amazed at the natural, remote beauty to be found in the Inside Passage in the SE part of the state.

Rich



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/02/23 16:28 by PasadenaSub.








Date: 06/02/23 17:21
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: TheNavigator

Crisp videos, and interesting images to accompany the report, Rich!  Looks like it was a pleasant trip. (I remember riding the White Pass from Skagway to Whitehorse and return in my kidhood, but sadly the slides my Dad took are no more.)
GK



Date: 06/02/23 17:56
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: WP921

Obviously partnering with the cruise ship industry is a great business model. 

I believe Carnival owns the railroad, or at least a big chunk of it.



Date: 06/02/23 19:04
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: Gonut1

Interesting to see this post. My younger son, his wife and I rode the East Broad Top in Pennsylvania at the very last days of Dec. 2022. They had taken delivery of two of their 4 new coaches built by the same manufacturer that built many of the newer coaches used on the White Pass. I find it such an amazing juxtaposition of seing the same vintage looking coaches pulled by such modern locomotives. I fully understand the cruise ship industry has really pushed the White Pass to new heights requiring longer trains and more power. But while we rode behind a GE center cab it is exciting to see that East Broad Top has been resurrected from the dead and that they have even restored steam which looks so proper even with these new cars. We rode in a vintage caboose but we really need to get back there and ride in one of these new coaches behind steam.
 I'm fairly certain while I believe the EBT will do very well going forward but without a deepwater port and mass amounts of tourists dumped on their Orbisonia station, they will not have their quaint operation grow to the point that they require 6 axle diesels. And that is probably a good thing.
Ironically the EBT was built heavily with a loading gauge sufficient that they could probably support the big diesels.
Thanks for the post!
Gonut



Date: 06/03/23 05:55
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: Jbarton

Thank you for sharing these.  I was beginning to wonder when someone would post the 2023 version of the WP&Y.  I sure hope they don't have a major rock slide in the port this year.  What a great operation and we can't wait to someday go back.

Jim Barton 



Date: 06/03/23 07:57
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: Coalca

Rode it last week 5/27. Great operation, and friendly staff. The conductor let my 1 year-old use his step so he could see out the window.








Date: 06/03/23 12:15
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: ns1000

Interesting post...



Date: 06/04/23 06:59
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: atsf121

What a trip Rich, my wife and I hope to go some day.  Her parents rode the WP&Y a few years ago and enjoyed it.  I'm glad there are still some of the older diesels on the properpty, there sure is a lot of history there.

Nathan



Date: 06/04/23 09:07
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: mcdeo

Thank you for posting and great timing for me. We'll be on the train next weekend! 

Mike ONeill
Parker, CO



Date: 06/04/23 09:27
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: ajax247

Really nice videos, thanks!



Date: 06/04/23 13:00
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: ProAmtrak

From those pics I need to put that on my bucket list very soon!



Date: 06/04/23 15:52
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: trainfn

We might have been on the same train.

We fulfilled a long awaited dream by riding the White Pass and Yukon along with visiting the Inside Passage.

Beautiful video. Thank you,



Date: 06/04/23 19:28
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: randyr

Great videos and pics. Thanks for posting. I visited with my youngest son in 2011 after driving over from Anchorage. The crew was impressed that we came all the way from Arizona to ride their train, they let us ride in the cupola of their former Sumpter Valley combine/caboose. We also rode a train with their #73 steam engine. Your videos brought back a lot of great memories. Pretty interesting seeing the new diesels with the vintage coaches. We are scheduled to visit next year. Almost got my wife convinced about making the drive to Skagway. Thanks again for the great coverage.

Randy in PHX

Posted from iPhone



Date: 06/05/23 17:24
Re: Bridges, Departures, and Meets on the White Pass & Yukon…
Author: rrpreservation

Thanks for all the info!!!



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