Waking a Beast, video

Before a steam engine can go out on the rails, there’s plenty of work to be done. As you see in the following video, the crew of Locomotive No. 40 does the job well. (Check it out in 1080 full screen if your internet connection is capable.)

The tools are heavy, the job is dirty, the temperatures alternate from boiling to freezing, but it’s a labor of love keeping steam trains running. Thanks to the good folks like the people you saw in the video, the rest of us get to enjoy the ride and the majesty of these machines. Take your family and see all there is along the rails.

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New Hope & Ivyland (video visit)

The New Hope & Ivyland Railroad operates steam locomotive No. 40 along the tracks between New Hope, PA (USA) and Lahaska. You have your choice to travel in open air cars or a comfortable parlor car. I recently took a ride on this train in the cab of the locomotive, which was very interesting. It’s hot, dirty, and hard work up front. Here’s the video:

Riding in the cab gave me an appreciation for what it was like a hundred years ago. There used to be thousands of locomotives like this working around the country and the people who kept them operating knew what they were doing. If not, well, a steam boiler explosion was a terrible thing. If you have the chance and the inclination, I recommend experiencing this type of living history. If for no other reason, you’ll see what it was like in the “good old days.”