Monday, June 10, 2013

Ridin' the rails again

Saturday turned out to be a double header for us. Our first stop was a visit to the Middletown and Hummelstown RR. Even though no train excursions were on their schedule for the day, we decided to visit anyway. Were we surprised as we pulled in and found that excursions were running that day to support a local Cancer Care group.  The M&H, or Milk and Honey Route, is a short line freight business that also runs weekend excursion trains manned by volunteers. The passenger coaches for the excursion trains and the passenger station are maintained by volunteers. They also have a colletion of "Interurban" cars that were used in and around Philadelphia and are waiting to be restored. 

Middletown  Hummelstown RR1

For our ride, we were pulled by a restored ALCO S6 in a restored coach for a 5 mile trip along the Schuylkill River. I got to talk to Wendell who is head of track maintenance. I complemented him on how good the road bed looked compared to some we have seen. He told me hurricane Lee had flooded out a portion of the line and was just now being replaced. When completed the M&H will be able to interchange with Norfolk Southern again.

Next was a stroll through their yards. Their other locomotives are General Electric 60 Tonners. These were built as switch engines in the 40's and 50's

Middletown  Hummelstown RR

THey have a nice consist of vintage "Multiple Unit" coaches that have had their motive units removed. Hopefully we will ride with them again in July for a full excursion.

Next stop was the Reading Railroad Musuem in Hamburg run by the Reading Railroad Technical & Historical Society.

Reading RR Museum

Like so many organizations involved in railroad preservation, these folks are trying desperately to save what they have been able to acquire.  Like most of the preservation society's, they depend on donations, grants, but most importantly volunteers. There are no rides here but it sure would have been fun to take a run in that RDC car in the lower middle. The Reading was one of the major lines to use these cars in commuter service in the Philadelphia area. As a kid i remember seeing them on the Reading Seashore Lines in NJ.

i hope you've enjoyed sharing our adventures in railroading. The next station stop will be at the Amtrak Station in Providence  RI on Thursday. So stay tuned.



A Quiet Corner said...

Although I honestly don't remember the last time I was even on a train, the name Reading, of course,reminds me totally of Monopoly!...:)JP

Elaine said...

You lucked out on that train ride! I'll bet there is still a bit grin on your face after seeing all those trains and getting an unexpected ride.

Wsprsweetly Of Cottages said...

I've only been on a train once and I loved it. I was only a child, but it was a memory that will last my lifetime. It was in the 1940's and going from car to car was a rather frightening experience for a small child.
I know a man who has spent his entire life painting trains. His name is Peter Korling. Look him up on the computer. We met a few years ago and his paintings of trains are amazing. Vivid. His basement, as others have done, is completely turned over to his trains. He sent me a video once of him running them....
You should take a peek at his artistry when it comes to trains.
So interesting...and different.

Doris said...

So happy you were able to visit these places in PA! We enjoyed our train ride at Middletown several years ago.

Sandra said...

glad the weather allowed you to visit the trains, and hope you have better luck in RI with the storms.

Eggs In My Pocket said...

I have never been on a train, but would love doing so! This looks and sounded like so much fun!

Anonymous said...

I love trains, both travelling and looking at them :-) Well I do like to start my miniature model railroad too :-)

Have a great day!

Anvilcloud said...

Why am I thinking of my old monopoly board?

Anonymous said...

We did something similar in NC years ago with my parents. I love your photos.

DeniseinVA said...

Great pictures! I thought of you when we stayed the night in Altoona, Pennsylvania a few nights back. Driving around we saw a rail-yard and looking at all the cars, and then found out from a friend that there was also a railway museum. We were on the road by then but maybe we will go back and check it out.

Happy Day to you,
An English Girl Rambles

NCmountainwoman said...

I love trains and wish there were more passenger trains available. I'd spend the extra time to avoid planes.

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