The Roundhouse Podcast

037: Western Maryland Scenic Railroad

Western Maryland Scenic Railroad

Western Maryland Scenic Railroad locomotive number 734 pulls a train down the hill from Frostburg, Maryland. Photo by Darkweasel94.

Where steam has reigned for two decades, Gen. Superintendant John Garner shares the details about maintaining and operating locomotive #734, restoring C&O 1309, and how their foundation works to connect people to the industry.

Western Maryland Scenic Railroad

John Garner. Photo by Joe Goodrich.

John Garner. Photo by Joe Goodrich.

John has a career with both mainline and shortline railroads spanning over 28 years.  He discusses what he has enjoyed about the WMSR and how his team has helped to make it a strong tourist railroad operation.  Also, with Western Maryland #734 due to enter the shop for its FRA-mandated inspection, the railroad is working hard to get articulated steam locomotive #1309 ready for the end of the summer.  Since the line from Cumberland to Frostburg is entirely up a steep grade, the railroad becomes a fantastic place for showcasing the strength of steam power.  He also shares details about the recent washout the line faced and how they are still able to carry forward with their excursion season.

The railroad also has a Foundation which provides the public an opportunity with working on railroad equipment, including freight cars and signals.  You can learn more about the WMSR Foundation by clicking here.

This episode was requested by Charles Shipp.  Let us know what you want to hear in an upcoming episode, as we work hard to discuss the topics that you want to hear.

Question of the Day (31:47)

If you’ve been to the WMSR, how was your trip?  If not, what looks most exciting about visiting?  Let me know and I will respond to your comments in our next episode.

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