Working on the Railroad

Now that most of the preliminary work is finished, here's how the plans compare with the "as built."

The railroad's area is wedge shaped about 60 feet long, and 5 or 6 feet at the narrow (upper) end, 25 feet at the wide end. The narrow part of the wedge is about 3 feet higher than the low end, and the entire thing slopes gently side-to-side, meaning that the basic drill is to dig, move dirt, buy fill, move more dirt, etc.

I think I added about 12 yards of dirt, and as you can see by some of the fills, I need about another 3 yards. The creek bed is in rough alignment, but awaits more dirt to make a final grade. Next update for this page sometime in spring of '05, after the thaw but before the ground gets too soft to work. Also need the time to see where the bulbs are that I missed uprooting -- probably a few in the middle of the track!

Note:  The railroad runs counter-clockwise only. Uphill is on the right side of the photos. In addition to removal of the S curve, the 2015 operating season saw replacement of "Bridge #1". The roadbed was lowered by an inch+ at this location, and the grade lengthened by about four feet. This let me run slightly longer trains with less wheel spinning!

In Theory (March '04)


As Built (October '04)

Looking toward narrow end. Red is track, blue is water. Note footer for wall. March 2004.

The S curve across the creek--top of right photo--proved impractical and alignment was changed.

Lower or wide part of wedge. 
Pre-formed pond in place. Temporary trestle was used for a season until the real one was fabricated and installed.
And they say this is supposed to be fun. Saturday dawns bright and inviting for a couple of hours of work on the garden railroad