Monday, September 3, 2012

My Two Favorite Maine 2-foot Steam Engines


Let me introduce you to two little girls.

Number 10 is loved at the Wiscasset, Waterville & Farmington (WW&F) Railway Museum located in Alna, Maine.  She runs Saturdays and many Sundays April through December pulling a few passengers cars on a few miles of long abandoned and now rebuilt 2-foot track.  Here she is seen running around her train at Alna Center.  The current-day WW&F runs from Sheepscot Station in the Sheepscot River Valley to past Alna Center Station as shown in red on this map:

The next lady is Maine Narrow Gauge Railway (MNGR) Co. Museum's #4.  She runs on a couple of miles of 2-foot track laid on abandoned standard gauge right-of-way along Portland, Maine's waterfront.  She gives a ride with beautiful views out over the water, but as you will see, I picked a day with little visibility.

Both girls have an 0-4-4 wheel arrangement meaning neither has leading wheels, both have four small drivers, and both have a 4-wheel trailing truck under their coal bin and water tank.  Yep, they are coal burners.

The Perfect 10

Her portraits were taken on the perfect Maine summer day of July 14, 2012.  First she is checked out, oiled around, and watered at the Sheepscot station and shop area.


In the picture above she has run around her train at Alna Center and is pushing it to the end of the line.  Both the conductor at the far end and the engineer mostly out the window are keeping close watch for mainly moose and deer.

Here she is at the Alna Center Station heading back to Sheepscot Station.  The railcar to the right in the siding is the subject of my blog post titled "A Model T With a Built-in Turntable".

Now she is back at the Sheepscot Station.  The buckets are full of cinders from the simple cinder pit below #10's cinder bin visible below her cab.  The cinders will be dumped in the parking lot to "pave" it and buckets will be returned to her side full of coal about the size of large gravel as are amazingly the cinders!

#4 Singing in the Rain

Have you ever gone out to be in the rain?  On an August Sunday morning I did.  If you want to photograph steam engines and you want the maximum amount of steam and smoke to show up in your pictures, when should you do it?  Right, in 100% humidity, i.e., in the rain.  And #4 put on a show for a few hardly train lovers.

Watering in the rain.

I don't think she minded the rain.

 Here she is getting her train moving.

And here she is running along the Portland Shoreline and parallel trail.

And two final attempts to take advantage of the lighting and the humidity.

My two favorite Maine 2-foot steam engines, not that I have met many!

Marty Bernard


  1. Was either one ever a working engine - or were the always for vacationers and tourists?

  2. Both locos were authentic working locos, but only #4 was an original Maine narrow-gauger. #10 was rebuilt from a 30" gauge Louisiana plantation loco, as I recall. But fear not, the WW&F is working on a new boiler for an authentic WW&F/Sandy River 0-4-4T, #9.

  3. I can't wait for MNGR (B&H) #7 to come back to service.
    They also have #8 there, but no plans to restore it yet.
    Chances are at this point WW&F will build their #11 (from SCRATCH!) before #8 sees any work.