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European Railroad Discussion > The Snowdonian Weekend


Date: 04/10/17 06:50
The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: 86235

One advantage of our move to South Wales is that the drive from home to Porthmadog has been reduced from 260 miles to 120, and the journey is much nicer.

1: I left home on Friday after breakfast with the intention of getting to Beddgelert in time to shoot the 10:45 Porthmadog to Caernarfon on the Cwm Cloch Isaf reverse curves above Beddgelert on the 2% climb to Pitts Head summit. I made it with about 5 minutes to spare. NGG 16 Beyer-Garratt 87 is the motive power

2: Back to Porthmadog for the 13:35 Ffestiniog departure to Blaenau Ffestiniog, with 1992 built Double Fairlie David Lloyd George.

3: And then back to the Welsh Highland, and a climb up the western slope of the Aberglaslyn Pass for this shot of the 14:15 from Porthmadog to Caernarfon behind Garratt no.143








Date: 04/10/17 07:09
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: 86235

4: Back at Porthmadog at the coaling stage the difference in size between the two types of articulated steam loco - Garratt and Fairlie - is pretty obvious

5: 87 on its return from Caernarfon leaving Beddgelert

6: And crossing Britannia Bridge in Porthmadog prior to entering Harbour Station

I posted some pictures taken with my phone of the works tour so I won't repeat, next will be some pictures from the Snowdonian itself








Date: 04/10/17 07:14
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: 86235

To avoid fatigue I'll just post three shots from each leg of the journey starting with Porthmadog to Blaenau Ffestiniog

1.1: Single Fairlie Taliesin was the train engine, piloted by 0-4-0STTs Prince and Palmerston, a triple header

1.2: The trio getting into their stride round the curve in front of Boston Lodge, it's (almost) all up hill from here

1.3: Journey's end is in site, the former slate capital of the world, Blaenau Ffestiniog as we round the curve past Oakeley Square



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 04/10/17 13:46 by 86235.








Date: 04/10/17 07:22
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: 86235

Blaenau back to Porthmadog

2.1: The two 0-4-0STT Prince and Palmerston are watered first and then run out of the way to allow Taliesin out. They will pilot Taliesin on the way down, as they did on the way up

2.2: The waterfall at Tanygrisiau

2.3: The engine change outside Boston Lodge; Double Fairlies Merddin Emrys and David Lloyd George replace Palmerston, Prince and Taliesin. In total the railway had 10 engines in steam on Saturday, five for the Snowdonian, two for the Welsh Highland service trains, one for the Ffestiniog service trains and two more, Linda and Hugh Napier just because they can!








Date: 04/10/17 07:27
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: 86235

So off we go to the lunch stop at Beddgelert

3.1 En-route we stopped at Pont Croesor to cross the morning train from Caernarfon, Garratt 143 is the motive power (through the steam)

3.2 At Beddgelert a surprise awaited us, ex-Penrhyn Quarry Hunslet 2-4-0STT with a well wagon carrying a flail

3.3 The two Fairlies simmer whilst the participants retired to the Royal Goat Hotel for lunch








Date: 04/10/17 07:34
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: 86235

From Beddgelert to Caernarfon involves some of the stiffest climbing, on 2% gradients up to the summit at Pitts Head

4.1 But before the passengers board there's a 'false start' for photographers as the two Fairlies lift their train out of the station and round the first reverse curve

4.2 Then its all aboard and off we go, the Ffridd Isaf curve beyound Rhyd Ddu is an almost perfect horsehoe. You can see the summit of Snowdon. This time last year it was snow covered!

4.3 and so to Caernarfon, with the castle as the backdrop. the huge space in front of the run round is the site of the new station, one of the projects trains like the Snowdonian raise funds for.

From Caernarfon we retraced our footsteps to Porthmadog via a prolonged coaling stop at Dinas Junction, eventually arriving some 20 minutes late at about 18:40, 10 hours after we set out. What a brilliant day!

More pictures https://nick86235.smugmug.com/Trains/2017/The-Snowdonian-weekend-2017/i-FCbwcRq



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/10/17 10:13 by 86235.








Date: 04/10/17 08:44
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: africansteam

Excellent post with wonderful photos!

Cheers,
Jack



Date: 04/10/17 10:25
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: 86235

Thanks, glad you like them. It's always a good show on the FR / WHR, and on Friday & Saturday the weather played ball too.



Date: 04/10/17 11:05
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: spflow

86235 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
>on Friday & Saturday the
> weather played ball too.

It certainly did! I see you had the classic North Welsh weather experience - did you pack your oilskins and wellies to ensure the result?  Usually works,  or rather the other way round. Thanks for the pics again.



Date: 04/10/17 13:45
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: 86235

spflow Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> did you pack your
> oilskins and wellies to ensure the result? 
> Usually works,  or rather the other way round.
> Thanks for the pics again.

For once it wasn't necessary, from mid-week here in Wales the forecasters were predicting good weather all weekend. But on Saturday morning I had to scrape ice off the car windscreen before setting off to pick up the Snowdonian.



Date: 04/11/17 10:10
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: CPRR

Fantastic Nick! Never seen a Fairlie locomotive before. Why two boilers? Two sets of controls?



Date: 04/11/17 13:47
Re: The Snowdonian Weekend
Author: 86235

Fairlies do have two regulators, although originally the Ffestiniog examples had a combination gear as it was thought that enginemen couldn't cope with two. In fact two regulators gives better control over slipping.



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