• Conway Scenic Railroad (CSRX) discussion thread

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New England
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New England

Moderators: MEC407, NHN503

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  by b&m 1566
 
Has anyone heard any news if MBRRE, will be resuming "Steam In the Snow" in January 2020? I thought we would have heard something by now and nothing is showing on the Conway Scenic schedule.
In other news (I may have mentioned this already but to lazy to go back and look), I've heard rumblings that they are looking into using their dining cars as stationary restaurants during the off season. My personal opinion is: why not give it a shot, if they're serving up good food and can make some money, go for it. More importantly though, if it helps retain your current employees in what is otherwise a very difficult field to find coverage for (restaurant industry that is), then give it a shot. Now that the Conway Scenic is providing their own food service for the Hattie Evans and Rhonda Lee the headache of trying to find a chef, cooks, waitresses and a bartenders every spring can be minimalized if you are able to provide a job for them year round whether the train moves or not.
  by NHV 669
 
1751 led a work train back to the spring washout site by Ammonusuc lake yesterday, with the "Shrek" excavator on the lowboy, and the old GT flat.

Cotton Valley Speeders ran all the way to Hazens, I spotted one of them while looking for the work train, and caught them on a return through the area, just as the group had reached the Hazens crossing and were pulling the first speeder off.
  by Dick H
 
Torrential downpours predicted tonight in the north country. CSRX better have the patrols out in the AM.
Also, the foliage is expected to take a beating.
  by NHV 669
 
The excavator should be somewhere near Crawfords still, unless the Conway crew took it back today or yesterday with 1751. I can't confirm either beyond 1751 returning to at least Hazens from a final 2019 run up the NHCR to Groveton yesterday, but it's been raining pretty good the last few hours, lots of thunder and lightning.
  by b&m 1566
 
It's clear to me that ownership had a very tight budget this year, when it came to operating 7470 (unless there is some other unknown reason). I suppose they could have done what Russ did in the later years of his ownership and just operated the engine daily for 4 weeks in the fall and call it a day but instead, they spread it out over the summer schedule and gave people over a much broader spectrum, a chance to experience a coal fired, steam powered train ride.
So, assuming it is operational cost, how much is it costing them (ballpark) to operate 7470 per trip to Conway and back? I know some of you must have a pretty good idea of what that is.
Last edited by b&m 1566 on Thu Oct 03, 2019 1:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by John Smythe
 
Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the current amount of monies that are required to be set aside for operation & maintenance of your average size steam locomotive are something like $40.00 - $50.00 per mile. This would include wages, insurance, fuel, water & maintenance. This is just for the steam locomotive #7470 per one R/T to Conway & back which is about 11 miles total.

On another note.... My Mom recently celebrated her 99TH Birthday, it was for her & my ( late ) Dad that I put so much time & effort into trying to get MEC #501 running again back some 20 years ago, to make both of them so proud of me. So it was not to be I guess, Mom will not live another 10 years to see her run if that's the current timetable. So at this point, I don't believe I really care anymore. Sad but true.
  by b&m 1566
 
Well, that adds up quickly. It basically, explains for itself why they limit the operation of steam. 3 trips a day 7 days a week and they would be looking at $10,000 a week, give or take a grand or two.
  by #7470
 
b&m 1566 wrote: Wed Oct 02, 2019 10:21 pm It's clear to me that ownership had a very tight budget this year, when it came to operating 7470 (unless there is some other unknown reason). I suppose they could have done what Russ did in the later years of his ownership and just operated the engine daily for 4 weeks in the fall and call it a day but instead, they spread it out over the summer schedule and gave people over a much broader spectrum, a chance to experience a coal fired, steam powered train ride.
So, assuming it is operational cost, how much is it costing them (ballpark) to operate 7470 per trip to Conway and back? I know some of you must have a pretty good idea of what that is.
Lack of crew is what is currently preventing 7470 from running a full schedule. Right now the steam crew consists of 3 guys, 2 are fireman and one engineer. That’s it. And one of the firemen is only there a few days per week.

I also did an entire business report on Conway Scenic when I was in college and did my internship there. When everything is taken into consideration meaning costs for fire up, coal, oil, water, crew and a bunch of small misc. costs AND factoring in the money needed for the 1472, the number to run steam per day comes in at around $2000. That was the cost and breakdown I was given from guys at the Valley Railroad and also confirmed it with Paul during my internship.

Steam is definitely not cheap but from what I understand at this point, it is lack of certified steam crew that is preventing 7470 from running a full schedule.
  by b&m 1566
 
Thank you for that info. So, it works out to be about $60 per mile to operate the steam engine. As for personnel, that too makes perfect sense, so I'm not surprised that you said that and it did cross my mind but it was after I submitted the post. The Conway Scenic certainly hasn't been immune to the struggles of finding help, that seems to be the reoccurring theme among every sector or business you can think of.
  by #7470
 
There’s been people retiring and new people coming in. Once the older guys left there wasn’t much left for certified fireman and engineers. That’s one of the reasons why 7470s rebuild was done by an outside contractor and not by in house personnel. Once all the new guys get trained and certified, we’ll start seeing a full schedule for 7470.
  by b&m 1566
 
So maybe next year will get to see the old schedule (pre 2008), when it operated all summer and again for the foliage season. I wonder if we will see it again this season for a weekend or two during Christmas. I'm not holding my breath for a Steam in The Snow Special this season, if they are that tight on certified personal to operate it.
  by NHV 669
 
Notch train was 10 cars yesterday, they finally hit double digits.
  by Pat Fahey
 
Hi All
The first post of this thread, B&M 1566 asked if the Mass Bay RRE is going to run the STEAM IN THE SNOW TRIPS.
Well, I have some good news The Mass Bay RRE is going to resume the Steam In the Snow trips starting next year.
I just rode the South Coast Explorer, today, and it was announced on the train, that after 5-year absence The Steam in Snow trips will begin.
The trip will be posted on the Mass Bay RRE website sometime within the next few weeks by the Mass Bay RRE. So this should answer your question. Steam in the Snow will be back. Pat.
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