Tuesday, September 20, 2016


Great Basin Getaway (GBG) is a biannual model railroad operating event.  I attended the 2016 edition earlier this month, joining the roughly 75 “Boomer” (visiting/traveling) operators.  My experience of the first day on Lee Nicholas’ layout was documented in the previous post:  http://espeecascades.blogspot.com/2016/09/great-basin-getaway-1.html

My second day was spent operating on Rob Spangler’s WP 8th Subdivision layout.  I previously “met” Rob through his posts on the Model Rail Hobbyist Forum.  His most recent thread is at: http://model-railroad-hobbyist.com/node/27524 

Rob’s railroad represents a mythical “8th Subdivision” on the Western Pacific located in Utah and eastern Nevada.  He operates circa 1980—close to the end of WP independence.  I spent a lot of time trackside along the WP in those years, so I knew the equipment and operations well.  I felt at home.  Rob’s layout features some of the best scenery and backdrop work I have ever seen.  It was a real treat to operate on. 

My photos of Rob’s layout and operation suffer from modest light and hand held photography.  He has done a FAR better job in his many MRH Forum posts.  I encourage readers to seek Rob’s posts there (posting as wp8thsub) for more detail.  You will learn much.  I “stole” at least one good idea of his for my car card boxes.

Rob S. looks out upon his empire.

Junction City Yard, the main classification yard on the layout.  This is at the RR-East end of the layout and serves the 25th Street industrial complex of Ogden.  Staging is down below.

The Ogden 25th Street industrial area.  Though scenery (groundcover and ballast) has yet to appear, the scene feels “real” with Mount Ogden looming in the near distance.

Just west of the Junction City yard limits is this large cement complex.  Big industries justify lots of freight cars providing rail service.

John P. works in Milton, near the middle of the layout.

This complex is at the RR-East end of Cedar, another mid-way station.

The other (west) end of Cedar where the Raft River branch takes off.

Switching Cedar.

Another heavy industry near the RR-West end of the WP 8th Sub.  The line to Elko (staging) takes off at the extreme right of this photo.

Bill S. dispatched our session.  The WP 8th Sub uses Timetable and Train Order operation, much like the Northern California Extension did on its way to Bieber.

Once again, I had a great time!  Rob has created a plausible fiction of an 8th Subdivision for the WP.  The operation fits the scenery.  Both are first rate.  “WP Lives!”

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