Ross Johnson photo Workers move refurbished wheels in preparation for this season.

Ross Johnson photo
Workers move refurbished wheels in preparation for this season.

Progress continues steadily during the last week of preparations before the Nevada Northern Railway opens its spring season on April 9. Director Mark Bassett moved through the railyard directing the work.

The plastic man behind the counter at the visitor center received his new arms, and the velocipede waited patiently for its first riders.

Curator Joan Bassett put the finishing touches on the interior of the center, which recently had its original one-hundred-year-old electrical wiring replaced.

Engine 204 easily moved cars around the yard and then parked inside.

“The biggest challenge is finding volunteers who want to do this stuff,” Bassett said.  “We don’t have this kind of industry in this country anymore. No one knows how to use this, but we have an app for everything.”

A flatbed truck arrived from Salt Lake City with Engine 93’s newly refurbished wheels and axles. Bassett watched while his yard foreman used an overhead crane to pluck the one-ton wheels from the truck’s bed and place them onto a hundred-year-old flat car. He is still working on fixing 93’s boiler.

The historical railroad set revenue records last year, and this season promises to attract an even larger tourist crowd.

At 1 p.m. on April 9, Engine 40 will depart with three passenger cars and an open flat car. On April 10 trains will depart at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Book tickets at Options include riding as a passenger, helping the conductor operate the locomotive or lodging in a caboose for an overnight stay.

Use caution in selecting your experience. Bandits have been known to operate in the area, and after a long, cold winter, expect to see them riding in the hills surrounding the tracks. They prefer to visit the  Sunday morning trains.