Extra Board

Welcome to Railfan & Railroad Extra Board, a monthly exploration of the passion for trains from many perspectives. Extra Board welcomes your submissions. We’re looking for about 1500 words accompanied by two or three photos. Each photo should be no smaller than 14 inches (or 1024 pixels) across at 72 dpi (no verticals, please). Brief caption information must accompany each photo. Please send your inquiries to the Webmaster for consideration.

Big Boy Returns

June 18, 2019

Big Boy Returns

Union Pacific did the impossible when it pulled Big Boy 4-8-8-4 no. 4014 from a museum display in 2014 and embarked on an ambitious five year rebuild and restoration to return the largest operating steam locomotive in the world.

My Time in Attica

June 3, 2019

My Time in Attica

In June 1989, I made the first of what became yearly pilgrimages to Attica, where Conrail and D&H roamed, where pushers still shoved tonnage up the 1.15 percent hill east of town, and not far from where a quaint little tourist line still chuffed through the countryside with the word “Attica” in its name.

A Visit to Strasburg

May 28, 2019

A Visit to Strasburg

Nestled in the heart of scenic Lancaster County, historic Strasburg, Pa., is home to the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania and the Strasburg Rail Road, one of the stops on our 2019 Fall Heritage Tour.

CSX in the Florida Panhandle

May 16, 2019

CSX in the Florida Panhandle

With the arrival of Precision Scheduled Railroading, CSX has doubled down on efforts to streamline its system, and once again, the fate of CSX’s operations in western Florida is up in the air.

A Boston Memory

April 26, 2019

A Boston Memory

Boston is an old city, with a history that stretches back nearly 400 years to its earliest days as a colonial seaport. Consolidations and closures over the years have matched the ups and downs of the local economy as fewer rail customers dictate shifting traffic patterns.

CSX: Leaving Boston

April 15, 2019

CSX: Leaving Boston

More than 180 years of continuous rail freight service linking Boston with western connections via the Berkshire Mountains have drawn to a close with CSX’s slow retreat from the city over the last few years.

The South Branch Valley Railroad

March 24, 2019

The South Branch Valley Railroad

The South Branch Valley Railroad was launched by the state of West Virginia in 1978 to preserve freight service for agricultural customers on this scenic Baltimore & Ohio branch line.

A Visit to the Wilmington & Western

March 24, 2019

A Visit to the Wilmington & Western

Operating on a former Baltimore & Ohio branch line since 1966, the Wilmington & Western Railroad provides Delaware’s only regularly scheduled steam operations through the scenic Red Clay Valley.

Trona Railway Today

February 13, 2019

Trona Railway Today

Seven days a week, Searles Valley Minerals crews mine the lakebed for valuable mineral compounds that are hauled out by the venerable Trona Railway Company.

Montana Rail Link’s Gas Local

January 18, 2019

Montana Rail Link’s Gas Local

For two decades, Montana Rail Link’s twice-daily Gas Local has moved petroleum products across western Montana between Missoula and Thompson Falls for ConocoPhillips.