Southern Pacific #18 – October 2021

#18 put on a memorable show for its final trip to Silverton, however it wasn’t without some adventure. October 1st and 2nd #18 was scheduled to pull a special photo train in conjunction with Rio Grande Southern galloping goose #5. Heading out of Durango and up Hermosa hill, #18 was struggling to keep up steam and water. After limping into Rockwood, and eventually as far as Tank Creek, we opened up the smokebox door to find the entire blast nozzle and blower ring had come apart.

To keep going we had to do some field repairs. A welder was brought in and thanks to Forrest Newman and Doug and Grant Mull some creative repairs were made and we were off again, albeit three hours late.

With a steady drizzle falling in the late afternoon, #18 arrived in Silverton just about dusk.

Day two proved much nicer, both weather wise, and mechanically. Lots of great photos were taken in the crisp fall air. #18 made it back to Durango the evening of the 2nd and was put to bed, its summer adventure at the D&SNG having come to an end. A big thank you to everyone on the trip that came out from the Owens Valley!

Many thanks to Randy Riter for allow us to post the following photos from October 2nd……