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West Highlander Steam Express 19-21st September

Discussion in 'What's Going On' started by JohnMc, Aug 25, 2014.

  1. LMarsh1987

    LMarsh1987 Part of the furniture

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    Hope you enjoyed your trip, John. I have managed to catch some great scenes, from the tour. The weather was superb on the Saturday & Sunday, and I hope to have a video up by Wednesday evening, which should be a nice reminder of your Highland tour ! Regards, Liam
     
  2. RalphW

    RalphW Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Administrator Friend

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    Thanks for keeping us updated John hope the trip was up to your expectations.
     
  3. KentYeti

    KentYeti Guest

    Very nice indeed.

    But, this Scotland you went to with clear blue skies. Is it on planet earth, and if so, where abouts please?
     
    steam_mad and EltonRoad like this.
  4. JohnMc

    JohnMc Member

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    Thanks Liam, a great trip all round.
    I knew you would get some good video, as the conditions could not have been better.
    Look forward to seeing it.
     
  5. JohnMc

    JohnMc Member

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    Thanks Ralph, a great trip all round.
    Glad to be able to share it.
     
  6. phil.sez

    phil.sez New Member

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  7. phil.sez

    phil.sez New Member

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    Nice shot Shep, i was just around the corner.
     
  8. garstangpost

    garstangpost New Member

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    26D_M, KentYeti and 46223 like this.
  9. 61994

    61994 Member

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  10. LMarsh1987

    LMarsh1987 Part of the furniture

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    I dedicate this video, to all the crew at WCR & the effort put in by RTC.

     
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  11. sgthompson

    sgthompson Part of the furniture

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    Great footage Liam and Dad , well worth the miles covered to captured such super shots in stunning scenery . Hope Grandad enjoyed himself . Steve
     
  12. JohnMc

    JohnMc Member

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    Thanks Liam, some really memorable footage.
    You captured some typical West Highlands steam locomotive performance.
    Made me wish I was back in my seat on the train!

    John
     
  13. Shoddy127

    Shoddy127 Member

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    Brilliant stuff Liam, looks as though you had a cracking few days!
     
  14. JohnMc

    JohnMc Member

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    Thought I would take a few moments to personally sum up the West Highlander tour.

    Firstly, and importantly, the weather was excellent, all round, warm, with blue skies, strong sun, and patches of haze. The views, colours, were brilliant.

    Operationally, it generally went as planned, to the timetable, with just a few minutes variation either way against is scheduled arrival time.

    There was obviously a risk using a maximum 60mph steam hauled train over 192 miles of the 125mph West Coast main line section, even with booked loops, and the WTT had planned “operational” stops just in case it lost time.

    Praise has to be given to the WCRC engine crews, support crew and other staff for managing the operation very successfully.

    In particular, how they quickly arranged a diesel substitute, after TGM failed, for the Glasgow to Crainlarich leg, and the Riley Black 5’s for the first leg to Fort William, and back to Glasgow on the Sunday, with thanks to Ian Riley

    As we travelled, you began to realise how many WCRC staff were involved in just our trains alone, not forgetting the Riley crews. I was also very impressed with the number of young people employed as part of the engine crews and support staff.

    There were also the WCRC crews on the Jacobite; which produced two steam trains at Mallaig at the same time on the Sunday, and the Royal Scotsman train which passed us at Rannoch station.

    We were regularly kept up to date on any changes, and apologies for a couple of the long stops, due to NR planning, by the RTC Train Manager and Stewards.

    As an aside, a couple of other observations or comments from me.

    The level of bushes and tree branches brushing the carriages was very evident, and must be classified as a health and safety hazard, for the engine crews alone. As well as marking the locomotive and rolling stock paint work! NR needs to take action on this point – as well as improving the general views.

    The train staff cleaning the carriage windows, following the smears and marks by the same overhanging trackside growth, to improve our views!

    The look on the sleeping, relaxing, passenger faces, on The Royal Scotsman de-luxe train, as it pulled into Rannoch station waiting for the token, as they were looked upon by a 100 plus trainload of other passenger, in such a remote location!

    Last, but not least, thanks to the seven catering staff from Gravy Train Catering, who provided three freshly cooked meals a day, plus drinks, with excellent service, for 120 plus passengers, who had taken the premier option.

    Final comment, for premier “full board and lodging”, over four days, worked out as 744 miles of steam haulage, plus 60 diesel, for the sum of £1.36 per mile.

    Pretty good value in my personal opinion, and a thoroughly enjoyable adventure.
     
    AndyP, Shoddy127, 61994 and 2 others like this.

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