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Photo Freight Charter with SOO Line 2-8-2 1003 ~ October 20th, 2007

by Elizabeth Guenzler

Historic Transport Preservation, dba Steam Specials, sent out an e-mail announcement about a two-day photo freight charter on the Wisconsin and Southern Railroad with SOO Line 2-8-2 1003. They had done other such charters with 1003 previously and the group had operated several photo charters with other steam engines throughout the United States and Canada in years past. However, this was the first time I had ever thought about participating in an event of this type. Bob had been part of the late Dave Goodheart's charter with that steam engine in 2004 and his photographs greatly interested me. So we both signed up for the event and made the flight and hotel plans. As the time neared, e-mail updates were sent which included the carpool list since we were not riding the train.

Bob and I flew into Chicago on October 19th, rented a car and drove to Brandon where we checked in and received a map and schedule.

Night photo session with SOO Line 2-8-2 1003. We knew we had an early start the next day so we drove to Beaver Dam for our stay there.

The steam engine in the early morning at Fairwater. Note the pumpkin with '1003' carved into it.

SOO Line 1003 being serviced prior to the day's activities.

The sun rising on 1003.

Reversing by the Fairwater sign.

The crew conferring in the early morning light.

Putting the final touches during servicing.

The photo line waiting for the departure.

Brilliant sun but very cool temperatures this morning.

Plumes of steam herald the beginning of the photo freight charter.

SOO Line 1003 rounds the curve at Fairwater on the first photo runby of the day.

Departing the yard area at Fairwater.

SOO Line 1003 passing the photo line. Our next stop was Fairwater Pond.

The photo runby at Fairwater Pond on a glorious sunny morning.

Fairwater Pond.

The rear of the steam train reflected in Fairwater Pond.

SOO Line 1003 crossing Church Street in Fariwater.

We set up at Church and West Streets for the next photo runby at the Fairwater Feed and Supply.

Local residents come out to see the steam engine at the grain silo and compound. Everyone relocated to Brandon Road in Metomen.

Clearing the brush from the side of the tracks.

Photo runby at Brandon Road in Metomen, Wisconsin.

The second runby at Metomen. Brandon Community Park was the next stop on the charter.

SOO Line 2-8-2 1003 leads its period freight cars through the park at Brandon. This was also the site of a servicing stop.

The 1003 crew working on the steam engine during the stopover.

SOO Line 1003 and its train at MP 161 of the Wisconsin and Southern, Brandon Depot Park.

Railway equipment on display at Depot Park.

SOO Line 1003 at the swtich at MP 161.

One of the hallmarks of Historic Transport Preservation is the inclusion of historic vehicles and people in period dress. To wit, this scene of a track inspector with a velocipede at Brandon.

While here, I took a picture of the builder's plate.

The next photo runby location was at Red Cedar Road crossing near Atwater.

Two runbys were done at Brown Road in Waupun.

A stop at Burnett to take on coal, in a most unique way.

Myself in front of 1003.

SOO Line 2-8-2 1003 blasting through Waupun, approaching Liner Road.

The water tower and scenery along the tracks near Liner Road.

A runby along Highway 49 in the Town of Alto.

A vintage car is added to the scene at Main Street crossing in Burnett.

Photo runby at Prospect Road in Beaver Dam.

Photo runby at McKinley Beach Road in Beaver Dam. The final location for the day was from a private residence on Beaver Dam Lake and remains a favourite of mine.

A late afternoon view of Beaver Dam Lake.

SOO Line 1003 reversing across the causeway across Beaver Dam Lake.

The garden looking out to the causeway.

A wide angle view of the steam train on the causeway.

The penultimate and last runbys of the day, at Beaver Dam Lake. With that, we returned to the hotel, had dinner and relaxed for the night. Tomorrow would bring more photo runbys and glorious autumn weather and colours.

Click Here For Part 2 of the Travelogue