Sunday, December 10, 2023


After my initial success with the forest at Cruzatte, I extended that forest into the corner beyond that scene—Noisy Creek.  I used much the same set of scenery techniques I pioneered at Cruzatte with some modifications.  The Noisy Creek scene needed to be barer, as the December 1964 slide that took out part of the trestle remains a gash in the landscape to this day.


SP X8302W crosses Noisy Creek Trestle.  The Noisy Creek scene is now ringed by forest.


My developing scenery technique for my mountain scenes begins with an initial ground/earth cover using sanded grout.  Pictures of Noisy Creek show a distinct gray cast, so my grout mix began with a gray and then added a sand color.

I noted the area of the 1964 slide does not have significant rock outcroppings, so I did not need to have rock castings within this scene.  


Noisy Creek scene with sanded grout ground cover.  Note I transitioned from a browner grout mixture intended for forest floor on the left above the rock shed to the gray covering in the Noisy Creek slide area.


Looking at the original simple backdrop for this scene and reflecting on my efforts and experience behind Cruzatte (to the left of this scene), I decided to add more prominent trees painted on the backdrop.  I sized the painted trees to match to the six-inch trees I would use in front of the backdrop.  I then added a fringe of forest growth covering against the backdrop.  The “forest growth” is made of small bits of the coconut mat “branches” material trimmed from the fir trees.



Painted individual trees on the backdrop plus adding the “forest floor” to the joint between backdrop and three-dimensional terrain.


I then added six-inch trees to ring the area above the slide.  These trees use the smallest trunk offered by Coastman’s Scenic Products and represent second growth as would appear around the area of the slide.  My developing scenery technique for relatively narrow forest scenes uses half trees against the backdrop and then full trees in front of that.  It creates the appearance of a denser forest.  The use of half trees was inspired by useful comments from my operating crew when viewing my first efforts at Cruzatte.


Half trees for use directly against the backdrop.  The need for these half trees can be seen in the scene directly above where another row of trees is needed to fill in behind the front row of trees.


Completing the difficult-to-reach tree-line behind the Noisy Creek slide, I then filled in the areas to either side of this area with taller “old growth” trees that transition to even larger trees beyond the tunnel/rock shed entrances that bracket the trestle/viaduct over Noisy Creek.  The photo at the top of this blog-post shows the finished result.  My forest is growing!

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