Steam fans were out in force to see this great Berkshire in steam hauling an excursion train from Buffalo to Corning in New York State.
It seems that these appearances are becoming rarer, although a few locos like the Union Pacific Big Boy and 8444 are currently being restored.
As steam locos age further, the cost of restoration rises due to lack of facilities to manufacture vital parts.
Let’s hope that we are able to see these magnificent beasts do their thing well into the future. It would be such a shame for future generations to not be able to witness steam power at its best.
At the end of the story there is a great video of this train in action just this month.
Derrick Ek/The LeaderThe Nickel Plate Road 765, one of the few steam locomotives still operating in the U.S., chugs along the Norfolk Southern tracks on Corning’s Northside. It was on a passenger excursion between Buffalo and Corning.
Posted Aug. 1, 2015 at 6:52 PM
CORNING | A historic steam locomotive, the Nickel Plate Road 765, made a stop in Corning on Saturday afternoon.
Carrying 800 passengers on a sight-seeing trip from Buffalo to Corning on Norfolk Southern railroad lines, the train stopped along the tracks on the city’s Northside. The passengers unloaded there and were shuttled by bus to the Corning Museum of Glass, then brought back a few hours later to board again and head back to Buffalo.
The 765 pulled freight and passenger trains on the Nickel Plate Road – a major rail line connecting Buffalo and Chicago – between 1944 and 1958, said engineer Gary Bensman.
The 765 was restored in 1979 and is now operated by the non-profit Fort Wayne (Ind.) Railroad Historical Society, and is one of only a handful of steam locomotives still operating in the U.S.
The Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society is running passenger excursions on regional Norfolk Southern lines this summer. This weekend, it’s running on the former Erie Railroad between Buffalo and Corning.
The train will make another trip today, dropping off passengers on the Northside tracks along 1 p.m. and picking them up again about 3 p.m., Bensman said.
“It takes 40 tons of coal to get from Buffalo to Corning and back,” Bensman said. “We had it delivered from a coal mine in West Virginia. It also takes about 25,000 gallons of water for the trip.”
The 4,000-horsepower steam engine pulls 22 cars, he added.
Jim and Lynn Asmus, a couple from Akron, N.Y. who have gone for rides on many historic trains, were among the passengers.
“The highlight for me was going over the gorge in Letchworth State Park,” Lynn Asmus said. “They also brought lunch to us in Hornell while the train was slowly moving. That was pretty cool – lunch delivery to a moving train.”
She said railroad buffs were snapping photos of the 765 at many places along the way.