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


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Final Afternoon at the Convention: Railfanning Anyone

The Asheville to Salisbury is an old Southern Railroad Route ( S Line) through the Appalachian Mountains.  There are amazing loops at the south end near Old Fort .  Lela and I decided to seek out this bit of Railfan paradise on our final day.  During the 3 hours we were there we were lucky enough to find an excellent photo location thanks to a local old timer who was out for a hike.  We followed this gravel road up the mountain side until we reached a crossing.  Parked the car and were overwhelmed by the beauty of this location.  You can see the complete route by going to this site.

It is also worth googling the map of Old Fort and look North of town near Mill Creak Road.  The loops are impressive.
The upper curve shown hear is a fill that extends out from the side of the mountain.  It used to be a trestle.
 The curves are super-elevated and the radius is tight making for lots of squealing flanges.  This train was heading downgrade (eastbound) with empty wood chip cars and you could hear it coming from all directions in this great pass.
 After the train passed us it disappeared into another loop and reappeared below us.  It had descended about 200 feet.  The grades are really something.
 A different perspective of the same shot.  I like to crop my photos to create length in train shots and focus on the subject

The Next Westbound mixed freight must have been in the passing siding at Old Fort.  Thundering upgrade this train was interesting with a UP on the front end.

 Here it is emerging from the cut at the crossing.  There is a tunnel inside this curve but I did not go near it as the clearance from track to the cut walls was narrow.  Not to mention I do not do railroad trespassing. 

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

2011 Convention: Part 2

Monday, September 26, 2011

Model Pictures from 2001 Narrow Guage Convention: Part 1

Friday, September 23, 2011


The Muskrat Ramble Modular On30 layout is very unique.  It features life in the Louisiana swamp lands with Muskrat gator hunting, fishing and cotton plantation.  The railroad goes down main street which features building constructed from photos of the era.  Your imagination runs wild as you look at the unique scenery techniques that capture the feel for this area.  The model railroad was created in Australia and has moved recently to the museum in Florida.  It was just great that the layout was brought out to the Hickory Narrow Gauge Convention.. 

Sundance Central: Narrow Gauge Convention 2011

Well OK.  Finally here is a video of the Sundance Central.  This is a large scale craftsman quality modular layout from Florida.  This layout was one of the big motivations to attend the narrow gauge Convention in Hickory North Carolina.  The video was taken using the movie clip feature on my Canon Powershot Pro1.  The quality is a little iffy but it does show off the amazing detail of this wonderful layout.  Enjoy.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Spencer and Salisbury NC

On one of the afternoon outings, Lela and I went to Spencer to see the North Carolina Museum of transportation.  It is located in the old Southern railroad locomotive shops.  We went to the station to buy our tickets and this engineer road up with a small passenger consist pulled by a Norfolk Western GP 9.  He asked us if we would like a ride up to the roundhouse.  We said yes of course.
 Here is the GP in its wine red colour.
 He invited us to ride in the cab.  Here is Lela in the brakeman seat.
 The roundhouse and turntable is operational and  is the largest surviving in the USA.
 It was sure nice to ride in the Geep.
 They did all their major shop work and the local railroad society volunteers to run the place.
 They have lots of vintage vehicles at the museum.
 How about the colours on this E unit.
 Here is the classic southern railroad passenger scheme
 Now this was a nice little 0-4-0
 The museum had an N Scale replica of the whole Southern railroad complex.
 Sure would have been great to get a tour of this facility when it was fully operational
 It was nice modelling as well.
 The shop building was magnificent.
 Nice to see a US Navy switcher.
 I love the paved track area.
 You could ride the turntable for $1.00
 Also there was an opportunity to drive the locomotive for 1 hour.  For a price of course.
 Classic locomotives look so traditional in black and white.
 The tracks run between the shops.
 This little GE unit was on display near the parking lot.
 In Salisbury we stopped at the AMTRAK station which is on the NS main.  This town would have been a trip in it self as there were lots of trains going by...of course....while we were at the museum.  Also the vintage buildings and signage was a plus.
 Drink Cheer Wine
 Coke for 5 cents.  Relieves fatigue:)
We stopped at a crossing on the way back to Hickory as the lights were flashing on the cross-bucks.  I jumped out of the car, with camera ready, just in time to catch this eastbound with high nose Geep 50's leading the way.  My next post will be of some of the action on the convention floor.  Stay tuned.