China February 2005
by Hsiang Tseng
Ji’an Interntional Train
The international train is usually hauled by a diesel locomotive (type M62); steam hauled occasionally. The staffs told me, on the day steam locomotive hauled, it’s usually delay (3 hours delay is not impossible).
Thank for the customs officer who gave me an international train ticket . This ticket is interesting: all words on the ticket are in Korean, but the price is in RMB. All tickets are issued on board.
There is another railway bridge connecting to DPR Korea. It’s located in QinShi 青石 village, near YunFeng 雲峰 Power Plant, but this railway is no longer operated. All tracts were lift several years ago. The bridge is still there, and open to travelers, but it’s closed in winter season. There is an immigration building near the bridge. During warm season, you can leave or enter the republic from this gate, if you can get a DPR Korea visa. Besides this, you also need some bravery to cross the river, because this bridge seems very danger (no railings). Photo taking is basically forbidden in this area. Of course you can do this when the soldiers are dozing.
Buddha Valley Coal Railway
Buddha Valley is located on CNR Beijing to YuanPing 原平 Line. This coal railway is not very long but beautiful. There are two high bridges on this line. The coal mine and the railway are both belong to ShenBang Group, Hebei 河北神邦集團. There are two SY locomotives on this line, SY0459 and SY0878. However, ShenBang Group gave them another lucky numbers: SY888 and SY666. A staff told me that is superstition; another told me their bosses are crazy. (Oh, I almost forget that we are in “Buddha Valley”!)
There are 2~4 trains running per day. If you want to visit there, you can take the 6:37am passenger train from Beijing YongDingMen 永定門 Station, and go back to Beijing on the afternoon. A Hard Sleeper ticket can be supplied on board. There are very few buses in this area, and they are very slow.
No change. It’s still very good. However, it seems not easy to meet a bus 385 from GuCheng Road (Maximum 45 minutes).
Feb 7th Rolling Stock Works
There are two works named “Feb 7th”:
- Feb 7th Locomotive Works
- Feb 7th Rolling Stock Works
All those SY and JF locomotives seem belong to “Feb 7th Rolling Stock Works”, not “Feb 7th Locomotive Works”. And unfortunately, the JF locomotive is now out of use. Although it remains in the shed, it’s impossible to visit without paying RMB 200.
I saw some words “Serve for People” (by MaoZeDong) on the wall, but I think nowadays Feb 7th Rolling Stock Works only serves for People’s money (RMB).
YJ232 is still there! Other SY locomotives are also in good condition.
Hot steel or iron grounds throwing can be observed in south part of steelworks, just near CNR Baotou West Station. There are no problems to visit anywhere in the works, but be carefully. Bus 3 from QiaTe 恰特 Terminal is the cheapest way to reach there.
Recently TieFa has became an AA degree tourist attraction, so they are very elegant. Visiting fee has became very high (RMB 120), and all souvenirs are overpriced but poor quality.
The KD6 is already there, and they bought a YJ from AnShan. It will arrive soon. A loop line at WangQian is now under construction.
All steam locomotives in TongChuan East Area were moved to the West Area on 1/1/2005. So far there are no any steam locomotives operated in East Area lines, like WangShiWa.
PuBai Railway is good. All locomotives are there, and the staffs are kindly. However, the weather on this day was so bad that I couldn’t get any beautiful photos.
BaoXi 包西 Line (Baotou to Xi’an)
This line was entirely completed in last year. From Baotou to ShenMuBei 神木北, it belongs to ShenHua Group 神華集團 (former BaoShen Railway). From ShenMu to CNR PuCheng Station it’s belong to XiYan Railway Company 西延鐵路公司. From PuCheng to Xi’an it’s CNR. There are no any steam locomotives observed on this line.
SongYi Local Railway
This railway is located in ZhiCheng City (west part of Hubei Province), from CNR ZhiCheng Station to LiuJiaChang. The Local Railway’s station in ZhiCheng City is just near the CNR Long River Bridge. Fortunately, there is a good highway along this railway. Buses from ZhiCheng to SongMuPing (halfway of this railway) are freguent, but few buses continue to LiuJiaChang. You can hire a taxi or 3-wheels in SongMuPing for a reasonable price.
The main line (SongYi 松宜 Line) of this railway is 40km long. There is a zig-zag in SongMuPing.
0km ZhiCheng (CNR) 國鐵枝城站
? ZhiCheng (Local) 地鐵枝城站
20km ChaShan 茶山 **
26km SongMuPing 松木坪
35km DaHeKou 大河口
40km LiuJiaChang 劉家場
**The formal name of ChaShan Station is ChaYuan (茶園), because there is another ChaShan Station on CNR Guangzhou to Shenzhen Line. But all local staffs call it ChaShan.
There is a 20km branch line (DaJian 大尖 Line) from DaHeKou 大河口 to ZhangJiaBang 張家榜.
There are 3~5 trains (or more) per day from ZhiCheng to SongMuPing, but there are very few trains calling to LiuJiaChang. However, their locomotive depot is located in LiuJiaChang, therefore, when these locomotives finish their job, they will return to LiuJiaChang.
They have 6 steam locomotives: SY1324, SY1136, SY0611, SY1111, SY0802(oou), SY0992(oou), plus 1 diesel (DF4).
ZhiCheng Port Railway
The Railway Department of ZhiCheng Port Affair Bureau is located near the CNR Long River Bridge, and the railway yard is just inside. You can enter the yard without problems. There are several SY locomotives operated there.
DaYe Colored Metals Corporation Railway
This railway is linked to CNR system at TieShan Station, on WuHan to JiuJiang Line. From Wuhan ("XinHua Road" or "FuJiaPo" Bus Station), there are some regular buses towards HuangShi. You must leave the bus at XinXiaLu (not TieShan stop), then hire a taxi (RMB 5) to "Transportation Department". The Transportation Department is located in a different place from the corporation building.
On the day I visited, I saw only SY1116 and SY1162 in the depot. During Chinese New Year, however, most staffs are not here, so I couldn't get more information. Basically, they have more than 2 locomotives. And I hadn't found the passenger trains, too. Maybe it exists, but I have no ideas where they are...
Hsiang Tseng email@example.com