Ride the

August, 2007

by Flo Deems

Introduction:- The New Hope & Ivyland Railroad runs freight during the week in the off-tourist season. But on weekends and during the summer weekdays, its steam engine pulls tourists in old restored passenger cars. The little engine, Baldwin #40, is a 2-8-0 authentic steam engine. It's 8 drive wheels are about 40 inches in diameter. It pulls 2 to 5 passenger cars through the Bucks County countryside from New Hope to Lahaska and back. When #40 needs maintenance, a diesel engine, an Alco RS 1, #2198, is put into service. I think the diesel also pulls freight during the off season.

This page shows scenes around the train station as tourists wait for the steam engine to take on more water and hook up to the first class dining car for the 2 p.m. run. The engine pulls the several passenger cars forward when it leaves the station. When it gets to its destination, the brakeman and engineer uncouple it and switch tracks so the engine can then hook up to the last car. So on the run back to the station, the little engine has to back up all the way. There is no roundhouse for turning it around.

Back at the station, again they uncouple the engine. It switches onto a side track and chugs up to the water station, where it takes on a new load of water into its boiler via a tube that sticks up in the coal carrier. If coal is needed, it also gets a new load of that.

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1. The restored New Hope & Ivyland RR's New Hope station. A small museum is housed in this end. Further around the left side, facing the tracks, is the ticket office.

2. The large sign standing outside the station.

3. Baldwin Number 40: The railroad's pride and joy.

4. One of the engineers in the cab.

1. Prior to hauling tourists, the engine gets some service. You can see the coal in the hopper car and the shovel.

2. Switching onto a side track to go to the water station, where it takes on a new load of water into its boiler via a tube that sticks up in the coal hopper.

3. Approaching the watering station. To the left of the engine you can see part of the boom that swings over the hopper car.

4. At the watering station. The end of the station platform doesn't extend far enough to photograph the tank itself when the engine is blocking the view.

1. You can see the watering spout behind the engineer.

2. Full of water, the engine comes forward along the side track so it can get ahead of the waiting passenger cars to switch onto their track.

3. Part of the top of the engine.

4. Showing 3 of the engine's 4 drive wheels on this side.

1. As the engineer backs Number 40 up to the dining car to couple with it, the brakeman stands watch.

2. After the engine has coupled with the car, the brakeman must hook up the hoses and lines.

3. Reflected in the dining car windows, the tourists await the signal to climb aboard.

4. A peek inside the first class dining car. First class in this case means 8 dollars more per ticket. First class passengers sit at the plain wooden tables, covered with a cloth. They can order both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, but no meals. The fancy lace at the windows notwithstanding, this is not a very elegant car.

For a fancy price, one can take a dinner ride on certain dates. The food, supplied by The Triumph Brewery Restaurant in New Hope, did not get a good review in The Times (newspaper, Trenton, NJ), July, 2008. Also, one can spend more money to get to ride with the engineer in the cab of Number 40!

"Toot-toot-toot!" And faithful Baldwin Number 40 steams out of the station for yet another journey.

Train Yard

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