Dave made a comment at the last operating session. Dave really likes running trains through dramatic scenery, and what about three loops so we can go loop to loop. Doug agreed.
The ops sessions are not all about what I want to do, if I can enable both the operator and the player in us all have a go, that cant be bad can it?
So I thought about it for a while, updating my Port Pirie plan, http://barcoola.blogspot.com.au/2016/02/proposed-new-layout-concept-port-pirie.html
A wiggly peninsula with a reverse curve could lend itself so well to mountain railroading.
Could I do something similar around Everett and Skykomish?
The inspiration is the picture below. low clouds deep ravines and high mountains, air horns bouncing off the valley walls. Things that are less OZ more acceptable in the USA.
I managed to squeeze in three loops, however I would need enough work so the shunter in us all does not get thumb twiddles.
So I added a Sounder service to Marysville, Marysville is the first loop north of Everett, my thoughts is it could be an extended Sounder service from Everett. Marysville has a few low swing bridges on the approach, really photogenic (see below) Additionally there is plenty of forestry type of industries around. Bayside yard used to have a shingles factory, so something that could take acid tankers and wood chips would be good.
Other additions would be a food distributors at Marysville, just because I can, I picked this from a location in Tacoma,
Again this sort of low water area would be a real challenge in HO.
Between this location I would like to have a big deep bridge, and then straight into a tunnel bore, again there is a great prototype for it at Stevens pass.
On to Skykomish, this place is very historic, and the photos below will give you an idea.
A forestry branch near Skykomish, if you google earth it, you will see a short branch facing Skykomish, I would like to see a more substantual branch, good for wood chips and other forestry products.
The wagons would have to be left in a siding near Everett so a shunt movement to and from marysville would be required.
Just south of Marysville is this swing bridge..
Very photogenic, already looks like a Walthers kit.
Skykomish is a spectacular place even in the rain.
Further down the pass a near a summer camp is this great peak a boo shot. This is sort of what I see as the essence of this part of the pass. With the new Walthers bridge kits this should not be too hard.
I guess this type of layout would get me out of my comfort zone, lots of trees and rocks, thus very learn by doing type of approach. It might make me a better modeler scenery wise. I still figure this is my Achilles heel.
Rolling stock wise I have enough for at least three trains and two sounder sets. None of it weathered at the moment, Time will l tell if its a priority.
I think there is nothing like a flight of fancy as they say, mid size layouts are a challenge not to put too much in.
When its all said and done, modelling USA railroads is kinda easy, lots of research material is available, fine inexpensive models are available and with sound! Having said that I have not seen any manufacture produce a a proper GP38-2 in BNSF swoosh!
So I guess I will plan this for a possibility, if not, for me to learn.
I had looked at a similar design with AN in mind, I am still playing with that, but its not a good reality, too much of a buy in required for it to look real.
Anyway, its a thought and figured I would share it.