Evie Mohrfeld: History on the rails

Published 6:05 pm Friday, October 29, 2021

On Oct. 20, we took to the rails for another one-day  outing on a scenic fall foliage train tour.   

As leaf peepers we were looking for another place to view the brilliant colors of fall in Boone County, Iowa.  This train ride seemed to be the right idea.

As we planned this trip we found many had never ridden a train, although this would be perhaps a different but exciting ride — a train ride with lunch served on it.

We also had the chance to learn some history of the locomotive as we visited the Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad | James H. Andrew Railroad Museum, which was built in 2012. We learned that the train was purchased from China for $333,000 in the 1980s. This would be the last steam locomotive ever built.

The  idea was to build the 156-foot Bass Creek High Bridge, which would showcase the Des Moines River and other scenic areas nearby. The black and red engine has the Chinese flag alongside the United States flag as it runs down the tracks and blows its whistle to begin the fun.

There are also two other engines used for various groups and events.

It caught our attention that this month’s edition of the Readers Digest magazine showcased a color photo of this  train crossing the tall bridge with a background of beautiful fall colors. This was another new experience for some and was reminiscent of train rides years ago.

Upcoming

Nov. 17-20: Springfield and Branson, Missouri motorcoach trip. Schedules for those joining us will be coming soon.

Dec. 1: “The Music Man” at the Chanhassen Dinner Theatre. Seats remain. Guests must wear masks for the entire show and can only be removed for dining. All guests must have proof of shots. Reopening shows and events is very important for them so that the show can go on.   

We are fortunate to be able to travel again.

The November newsletter has been sent out. Travel hours remain 9:30 a.m. to noon, Monday and Tuesday.  Our number is 507-438-3946.