Reading Company Newtown Pa L-5a 4-6-0 589 May 4 1941 Baldwin 1902

As you see in this photo, the engineer’s cab is located on the side of the boiler – the large round portion of every steam locomotive, where the steam is generated to power the driving wheels – rather than behind the boiler, which is the norm for virtually every other type of steam locomotive.

Hence, this design took on the “camelback” name, because the engineer sat astride the boiler. It became a very popular locomotive for pulling short passenger and freight trains on railroads such as the one which I grew up with … the Reading Railroad.

 » Read More

February 12th, 2018

Posted In: Railroads

Tags: , , , ,

Leave a Comment

A more satisfying Amtrak ride by aAmtrak GE Genesis P42 166 at Saratoga Springs

My friend Mike and I – both train lovers – were chatting a couple of days back, talking about how great it would be to see the rail passenger’s “customer satisfaction” level improve in this coming year. In other words, what would it take to create a more satisfying Amtrak ride?

In letting you in on what this likely would require, we thought it best for you to read it from the perspective of an Amtrak P42 diesel locomotive we happen to know.

 » Read More

January 10th, 2018

Posted In: Railroads


I recently found myself in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, an area where I’ve not spent much time in recent years. And, since it’s been decades since I last visited the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, which is located just across the street from one of America’s best-known tourist rail lines, the Strasburg Rail Road, I carved out a couple of hours for a fresh visit. And, I’m glad I did, as so much has been added over the past 25 years.

 » Read More

December 27th, 2017

Posted In: Railroads

Tags: , , ,