Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Heber Valley Railroad, Heber City, Utah

 

The Heber Valley Railroad runs from Heber City, Utah to Vivian Park in the Provo Canyon. Here is a description of the railroad from Wikipedia: Heber Valley Railroad.

The Heber Valley Railroad (HVRX) is a heritage railroad based in Heber City, Utah. It operates passenger excursion trains along a line between Heber City and Vivian Park, which is located in Provo Canyon. The HVRX carries over 110,000 passengers a year.

The railroad line is approximately 16 miles (26 km) long. A typical round trip ride on the train takes about 3 hours. There are a total of four passing sidings outside of the Heber yard limit. Notable landmarks seen from the train include Mount Timpanogos, Cascade Mountain, Deer Creek Dam and Reservoir, Provo River, Sundance Ski Resort, Tate Barn, and Soldier Hollow. A variety of wildlife including deer, eagles, fox, moose, turkeys, hawks, mountain lions (cougars), and beavers, have all been seen from the train as well.

We spent a very pleasant day trip driving to Heber City and taking a ride on the Railroad. It was a beautiful trip. 

Monday, October 26, 2020

Heber Valley Railroad Engine 300, Utah

 

This is Engine 300, a rare 0-6-0 type steam locomotive, now owned by the Heber Valley Railroad located in Heber City, Utah. Here is some background about this rare steam locomotive from SteamLocomotive.info.

No.300 spent all its working life as a switcher at the Columbia Steel Corporation's iron smelting plant at Ironton, Utah. The Ironton Works, as it was known, was one of the largest pig iron plants in the west, and was built beginning in 1922 by Columbia Steel on a 385-acre site near Springville. To move slag cars between the coking plant and blast furnaces, Columbia ordered a single 0-6-0 from Baldwin that was delivered in 1923 and numbered 200. By the next year the plant was in full production, and the first pig iron was produced. Coal (to be converted to coke for use in the by-product ovens) was mined locally and delivered to the plant by Columbia's own short line, the Carbon County Railway.

Columbia returned to Baldwin shortly after the plant opened for an additional 0-6-0, No.300, which was built and delivered in May 1925. Modern in design, the 300 features piston valves, power reverse and a Westinghouse cross-compound air compressor. By comparison, sister 200 was a bit older in design, having just one single-stage compressor. A slope-back tender was necessary for visibility while switching.

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Mount Timpanogos from Deer Creek Reservoir, Utah

 

I have a number of photos of Mount Timpanogos from the western side facing Utah Valley but this time I am at Deer Creek Reservoir in the Heber Valley and looking at the eastern side of the mountain. It was a beautiful clear day especially after all the days of smoke from the fires this summer. You can see the effects of a very long drought here in Utah and throughout the Southwest from the drop in the water level. 

Friday, October 23, 2020

Fall in Heber Valley, Utah

 

This was the last day of warm Fall weather. A cold front was moving into Utah with wind and much colder temperatures. The Fall leaves were not at their most colorful but there were still some very striking trees. This is the Provo River Delta as it enters Deer Creek Reservoir. We had a beautiful day in a high mountain valley just a short distance from our home. 

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Mushrooms in the Front Yard

 

We seem to have a number of different kinds of mushrooms growing around our house from time to time but this was very unusual. I have never seen such a solid mass of mushrooms before. The weather has been cool and very dry but this part of the yard gets water from a sprinkler. 

Monday, October 19, 2020

Wild Turkeys in Your Front Yard

 


Although technically we live in a city, we live right next to the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest. Although the actual forest boundary is about a half-a-mile away, the land between our home and the forest is owned mostly by Provo City and is undeveloped. We have a herd of deer living in our front yard because the heavily forested hill is about ten feet from the side of our house. We see and hear cougars, weasels, bighorn sheep, rats, squirrels, a variety of birds including flocks of quail, and many other animals. This is the first time we have seen a flock of turkeys in our neighborhood.  This is not our yard, but it could be. 

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Provo Canyon Range Fire on Mount Timpanogos, Utah


 I have taken a lot of photos of Mount Timpanogos from my front yard but this is the first major fire photo. The fire is called the "Range" fire because it started in a rifle range in Provo Canyon. Utah is mostly classified as in an extreme drought with significant parts of the state in an exceptional drought. There are two major fires burning at the time this photo was taken. For a while, we thought the fire might be coming our direction but it has stayed in the canyon and on the mountain. Here is a screenshot of the Drought Monitor. 

https://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/CurrentMap/StateDroughtMonitor.aspx?UT