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Originally modeled in HO, the sar didn’t become a viable entity until the switch to N scale was made and Kato released their six axle SD40. Several layouts were built, including the one featured in the Jul/Aug 01 and Mar/Apr 02 issues of N scale Railroading magazine, before I was happy with the complete picture. The newest layout is a double deck point to point design with an emphasis on helper operations. Reverse loop staging yards on each end restage trains between each operating session.

The area I chose to loosely model is from Lethbridge Alberta to Crowsnest, a wide spot in the right of way on the Alberta/British Columbia border. My main yard is located in the town of Fort Macleod. With some artistic license Ft. Macleod is also the base for helper operations required on most westbound trains.


From Lethbridge trains traveling west run on fast track through prairie landscape before crossing the Oldman river on the 1907 foot long Monarch Viaduct. Westbounds soon reach East Macleod and begin to negotiate various control points to get into Fort Macleod proper. Heavy trains get their helpers here for the assault of the 2.2 percent grade heading out of Fort Macleod. The 2.2 percent grade continues for 120 feet before reaching East Cowley.

The line drops into a sag after crossing the Crowsnest River and once again climbs to the highest point on the layout at Summit. If the helpers are operating in midtrain they stay on through the sag and over summit cutting out at Sentinal. From Sentinal trains travel along the shores of Crowsnest Lake and Island Lake at 25 MPH before reaching the western terminus at Crowsnest.

 

Trackplan coming soon