Lyon Valley Northern

This site is designed to promote the hobby of ferroequinology. It also provides an opportunity to show the development of the "Lyon Valley Northern": an HO railroad featuring CN and BNSF action in the West. Please feel free to contact me if you have questions or comments at

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Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Visit to the Vermont and Essex

The Vermont and Essex is located in Montreal. This layout is club in the basement of a Hobby Shop. The members have a keen interest in Modelling an exact replica of Vermont in the 1950s. They love to complete structures and scenes to either replicate the prototype or selectively compress to give the full impression of the area.

This first shot is in Bellows Falls. Many people recognize the trackwork and station.

Right behind the station is this interesting stone freight house.

As in the real town. Across the canal there is a main street with many of the town's structures. See the fire hall.

Here is the main street and canal.

Of course the river is damed for hydro and this is an excellent replica of the power facility.

Here is a the marble works. They did a great job on this little industry. I like the small flat cars with the slabs.

This Shay heads a small work train into the industry

Here is the quary where the marble is mined.

A couple of shots of this GE unit on a bridge in the mountains

This picture is of downtown St Albans

Above is the famous landmark of White River Junction. Lela and I visit there when we can and on many occasions we have seen the Vermonter and local freights.

Picture of the backside of the station. Love the tower with the locomotive on top.

Higher angle shows the platforms and busy sign of passengers waiting for their trains

This industry is in St Albans. I am sure Stirling was a big employer in the good ol' days

The St Albans Roundhouse

The coaling tower really gives you a sense of that era.

The action was just great as the RS3 is being brought out for the next run

It wouldn't be Vermont without a farm

Nice to see the interior complete with cattle and stalls.

The St Albans Freight House. This in reality is a big structure. Even when compressed it is huge

This shot shows its location relative to the Train Station.

It would not be Vermont without waterfalls made by dams to service mills.

Yes this mill is indeed a good reproduction. What a scene.

Here is the St Albans Station with its train shed. The station is still there today though the train shed has been torn down

More shots of the marble works

Looks like a great pool to go fly fishing

Gotta love steam in Green and Gold

Essex Junction Depot

A broad shot of Essex Junction with the town and crossing

Walking further down the track the scene is breathtaking. The watertower and over cast sky make it a fine work of art.

St Albans. Kept coming back.

The weathering is just great

It would not be Vermont without a covered bridge

Being fall the farmers are taking in the hives for the winter

Nice farm house with windmill

The attention to detail is amazing. A wonderful bridge with lights and a great old New England Home on the hill.

A wooden bridge with the B&M F unit hauling on a super-elevated curve.

Here are some company houses.

Another shot of the mill. The water was done really well on this layout. The colour and effects were fantastic

This grave yard does exist behind the train shed at Essex Junction

This angle really highlights the church up the road on the hill top

Now how about a canoe ride. I hope you enjoyed this visit as much as we did. we definitely will be back next November.

Nice scene as the train crosses the river

St Albans yard with a departure from the station

Finally a North Bound Freight approaching White River Junction.

Monday, December 14, 2009


Eleventh of December brought the first heavy snow to Ottawa. The gang was out in full force to visit the LVN and put it through it's paces.

The CN M636 was heading up a new consist for the operation...A Tank train which would service Husky Oil, Newby Chemicals, Glycol Plant, Alberta Methanol, Dempsters Bakery and the news paper manufacturer.
This CN locomotive is a great runner and was a post 2000 release from Overland Models.

Across the tracks there is CN8000 waiting for it's evening crew. Local 403 will be hard at work handling the cement plant, several truck transfer facilities, lumber distribution and the GE plant.

Over near the Glycol Plant there is a spur where CN power is stored. You can see the crews out on the locomotives getting them ready in case they are needed. The farm in the background sets the scene as Rob Newby's scratch built Silo makes a familiar land mark to this area.
Looking back into the staging yard you can see BN 4011 at the head of a coal drag. Train 900 will be based on switching the loads out of the port and starboard open pit coal mines.

Train 101.. A hot shot container train is ready in track 3. This will serve as a bonus train for those who finish their run early.

Start Time is approaching and all we need is the crew. The call board shows that Ron, Dave, Fred, Monique, Bob, Jim, Joel and myself will work in two person teams: engineers and Brakeman.

Here is Jim (sitting) and Dave waiting for their assignments.

Jim and Fred were assigned to the local mixed freight (CN 8000) Looks like they are watching carefully as the locomotive runs around the consist in the yard. Lots of action there and you have to make sure you are moving on a free and open track.

Fred and Jim look like they are waiting for Joel and Bob to finish their work at the Grain Terminal. Monique is pushing the coal empties into the port mine. This maneuver covers about 35 ft of running.

I asked Bob to give me one of his crazy looks. He is having way too much fun.

Monique and Bob are laughing about something. Hope it is not a head on collision they have planned????

Ron and Dave have taken their mainline power (M636) to the Richmond Locomotive Servicing track and have acquired the local RS18 switcher. As you can see in the picture they are deep in a puzzle with facing and trailing sidings and a small two car run around track. You also can see that there are a number of industries here where they must move 9 tank cars from four sidings.

The Starboard coal Mine has been worked and Monique has her train heading for staging on the outside main past the port coal mine. Jim was watching the action and I think I lensed him by surprise.

Here are Dave and Ron. Looks like half the job has been completed as the empty tank cars have been removed from the industrial sidings. Now they have to bring in the loads .

Here is Joel after the Grain Run. He is now watching the departure of the container hotshot. later they will be bringing the cars into the terminal right in front of him. transfers will be made and the train will carry on to Shelby Montana.

Fred and Jim are bringing the bulkhead flats into the lumber distribution industry. You can see they had to spot three tank cars from Newby Chemicals in the classification yard track 1 to get at that siding.

Ron and Dave have finished their work at Richmond Yard. They are just leaving the classification yard lead onto the inside main. They will have to drive the main two times before they reach the staging yard where they will switch the glycol plant and Newby Chemicals.

Jim is smiling. Train 401 has just finished it's last job at the GE plant. They have travelled the main back into the classification yard. They will terminate in track 1 in front of the station.

Ron is just taking the green and blue Procor tank cars out of the glycol plant. He turns with throttle in hand. He looks quite pleased with the progress.

The port coal mine is a busy place. Looks like the Procor loads are ready.

Here is a shot of earlier action. BN 4011 is hauling coal away from the Starboard coal mine. Monique is at the throttle.

A shot of BN4011 with train 901 passing through the staging yard.

Here is a shot of Jim and Fred's locomotive CN8000. It is removing the chemical cars from Newby Chemicals so they can access the switchback to the lumber distribution facility.

The classification yard is full at this time. You can see CN 401, CN403 and CN 101

Here is a meet on the outside main. Bob and Joel in train 101 are crossing in front of the waiting train 403 which occupies the outside main. A nice clean maneuver they will be able to cross over again at the starboard coal mine. Looks like a nice day and the golfers are teeing off on the 13th hole.

Train 901 headed by a leased CEFX 123 (SD90 Mac) is approaching the tower on the yard lead. A VIA rail passenger train is doing a run with a CN Alco M630. This power is need as my F40PH is still on order from Overland. Maybe I will see it in a few years.

The arrival of CN101 on track two. Its work is done.

RS18 on the lead, cleaning up strays in the yard.

Joel is puzzled about something and I am sticking my tongue out at Monique who is snapping this shot.

Nice shot of Fred in his Red Friday Shirt. He is holding his train orders for the local.

All in all it was a very successful operating session. It was a great evening with friends. Next stop will be Tommy Hoods for an evening of Steam on the Canadian Northern.