Season ends for Short Line 101

Lisa Goudy
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More than 2,000 people took a ride on the Short Line 101 this summer.

The scheduled run of the Short Line 101 on Aug. 24, 2014 at the Western Development Museum was cancelled because of the heavy rainfall.

"It was a very good season,” said Jackie Hall, program education officer at the Western Development Museum.

The last run of the train for the 2014 season was scheduled for Sunday, but it was rained out.

“Water makes the tracks slip and so the wheels can’t get traction. We do have a sand belt but there’s a limit to how much sand you want to put on the track. If it’s really wet, it can’t run,” said Hall. “The coasters are pretty open. You can imagine what it’d be like to ride in the rain.”

Sunday wasn’t the first time the 1914 Vulcan steam engine couldn’t run this summer, but she said there weren’t very many times a scheduled run had to be cancelled.

The steam engine, which is the only running steam locomotive in Saskatchewan, usually runs from the long weekend in May to the long weekend in September.

“I’m very thrilled,” she said. “It’s one of our favourite things because people enjoy it so much and it really is a taste of the past. I mean there’s something quite unique about the smell and the sound and the steam.”

The museum is still working towards extending the track to make the ride longer. However, that isn’t likely to happen any time soon because it takes time, money and people.

“All those things have to come together to make it happen,” said Hall. “The maintenance of the one we have takes a bit of labour. It’s like the roads. You can’t just put them there and expect them to survive the weather and all the rest of it.”

Follow Lisa Goudy on Twitter @lisagoudy.

Organizations: Western Development Museum

Geographic location: Saskatchewan

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