Tuesday, April 8, 2014


As I move into the next stages of construction, I also am planning for the eventual signal and switch control system.  Supporting that effort has been the creation of track plan schematic drawings for each of the stations on the layout.  Previous efforts documented Oakridge, Springfield and the Eugene Depot and Classification Yard.  Those schematics have been posted on the Track Schematics tab for this blog.  Schematics for the rest of the railroad have now been created and posted on that same page tab.  The new station schematics also are presented and discussed below.

Crescent Lake

Crescent Lake is the upper level staging for the layout with a twelve-track reverse loop yard planned.  The schematic shown below shows the yard ladders at both ends of the reverse loop.  The basic formulation is two six-track ladders at each end.  A “switcher spur” will be included within the loop to store a switcher that will assist layout restaging between operating sessions.  This might also be used to store snow removal equipment (plow, spreader, flanger) during operating sessions.  Crescent Lake is the RR-West end of the layout.

Cascade Summit

Cascade Summit will be at the same level as Crescent Lake and, as the name implies, will be the summit of the mountain climb that begins at Oakridge.  Cascade Summit has a mainline straddled by two sidings: the “Mountain Siding” for RR-Westbound trains and the “Lake” siding, closest to the aisle and the imagined Odell Lake, for RR-Eastbound trains.  Cascade Summit also includes a wye for turning helpers and snow equipment.  A set of crossovers provide access for the turned helpers to the “Lake” siding and a small extra siding (the “Beattie Spur”) used to hold helpers for their opportunity to return downhill to Oakridge.  A railroad maintenance spur should be located at the RR-West end of the complex, but may end up at the other end due to space considerations.


During layout design, I chose mountain sidings to model based on operational significance.  I ended up selecting about every other actual siding, but the ones selected had some significance.  In all cases, my sidings had train order offices before the installation of Centralized Traffic Control (CTC) in 1955.  With all the structures needed for one of these full “railroad villages” available as kits from AL&W Lines, I could not resist this choice. http://alwlines.com/

Cruzatte was a required wheel cooling stop for descending (RR-Eastbound) trains in the days before dynamic brakes.  Water was available at both ends of the siding to handle both the road (lead) locomotive and helpers.  Beyond that, Cruzatte was a “basic mountain siding” with main, siding and a company spur (house track or M.O.W. spur).  I skipped Abernethy between Cascade Summit and Cruzatte.


Skipping Frazier and Fields, the next siding or station will be Wicopee.  Wicopee also was a train order station.  In the days of steam, it was the habitual up-hill watering stop.  One of the steam era water plugs still exists  at Wicopee today, used for fire fighting and other maintenance tasks.  Wicopee is another “basic mountain siding.”

McCredie Springs

McCredie Springs will be the lowest of my mountain sidings, skipping Heather (RR-West) and Pryor (RR-East).  A resort once stood near this siding.  I will add a rock quarry and bunker for “operational interest.”  There were a number of quarries in the area, but none were rail served.  Consider this a modeler’s choice.

Oakridge is the next station RR-East on my layout.  Oakridge was the helper station at the base of the mountain climb.  It had engine facilities and a turning wye.  Oakridge has been discussed in several prior blog posts:

The schematic is shown here again, just for completeness.

The schematic shows the yet-to-be-built Pope and Talbot mill spurs at the RR-West end of town.  Travelling through a short tunnel at the RR-East end of Oakridge brings us to Westfir.  Westfir is represented by another pair of mill spurs for Western Lumber Company.   No schematic is provided for Westfir at this time.


Springfield is the next station on the layout.  It was the first track laid on the layout.  Springfield includes tracks and spurs along the mainline and a bit of a branch, my “Marcola Branch” off the RR-West end of the siding complex.  Sufficient railroad business exists in both areas to require two separate local switching jobs.


Eugene Depot and Classification Yard

Just across the Willamette River from Springfield is the Eugene Depot complex.  This includes the depot mainline, “WP Siding,” a pair of “City Yard” tracks, and industry spurs.  Parallel to the depot complex is my eight-track classification yard.  The classification yard is placed here simply because there was space for it—space that did not exist in the “back room” where the Arrival/Departure Yard (staging tracks) are located.  Industry spurs at the RR-East end of the depot complex are still under development.

http://espeecascades.blogspot.com /2013/07/track-laid-in-eugene.htm

Eugene Arrival/Departure Yard

The RR-East end of the layout is in the Eugene Arrival/Departure Yard, another twelve-track reverse loop yard.  Contained within the reverse loop will be engine service facilities for both steam and diesel.  Outside of the reverse loop will be an industry spur/branch that will terminate at a paper mill.  (I moved Millersburg from north of Albany to north of Eugene.)  The other side of the reverse loop will have the caboose track and the Oregon Electric (SP&S, BN) Interchange.

The track throat complex between the depot and classification yard and the reverse loop yard is sufficiently complex that a tower operator position will be developed.  The complex is somewhat like Santa Clara, California, where I used to take railfan pictures.  Once again, AL&W Lines has produced a wonderful structure kit for that tower.  Since Santa Clara, Oregon, is on the north side of  Eugene (very near the SP yard), I will call this tower Santa Clara, as well!

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