Switching Summit Coal by Train SA-44 (The Coal Peddler)

This page describes how one train services an industry located on
a switchback spur. The photos show step-by-step how this switching gets done.

Summit is the first of 5 towns switched by the coal peddler (train SA-44). Complicating matters is the fact that the Summit Coal Co. is located on a switchback. Here is the track arrangement at the East end of Summit. Summit View
To reach the hopper, a locomotive must enter the Team Track, then "switch back" to the hopper. This is more complex (and more fun to operate) than a simple spur. Showing the Switchback
Here SA-44 has arrived and the locomotive (class L1s 2-8-2 #843) has uncoupled from its train of loaded hoppers and is entering the siding to pick up the hopper. Problem is, a boxcar is spotted on Team Track 1 and is in the way. Boxcar in the Way
The locomotive pulls the boxcar out of the way... Pulling Boxcar
... and spots it on the passing siding for now. Boxcar on Passing Siding
Next, the locomotive proceeds into Team Track 1... Entering Team Track
...and prepares to switch back to the hopper. Note the backup light on the tender is "on." In the Team Track
The locomotive couples to the empty hopper... Coupling to Hopper
...pulls it into the Team Track... Pulling Hopper
and backs it out of the siding. Backing Up
The empty hopper is coupled to the first loaded hopper in the train... Coupling to Load
...pulls it into the siding... Pulling Load
...and prepares to switch back. Note that the tail track of the switchback can only hold the locomotive and 2 cars. Almost Done
The loaded hopper gets spotted. Spotting Loaded Hopper
The locomotive and empty hopper then pull forward... Empty Leaving
...and back out of the siding. Backing Out
Now, the boxcar needs to be replaced on Team Track 1. It's a good thing we spotted it on the passing siding in front of us so we wouldn't forget it! Coupling to Boxcar
The boxcar gets pushed up the siding... Pushing Boxcar
...and spotted back on Team Track 1. The locomotive then backs onto its train, couples up and pumps up the air. Work Completed
Train SA-44 waits on the passing siding for the tower operator to give permission to leave town. The switchback provided a lot of interesting switching moves even though we only picked up and set out one car. SA-44 Ready to Depart