The International Steam Pages

Shibanxi Holiday 2009 - Bagou Panoramas

Click here for the main Shibanxi Holiday 2009 page.

The following set of pictures are intended to give those who have not been to Bagou an idea of the total environment of the town. One side effect of the construction of the truck roads has been to open up readily accessible spectacular views - there have always been paths up the hills but by and large they have only offered glimpses of parts of the town through the abundant greenery.

First the view from the south-east side. The railway station is in the middle of the shot. The 'modern' white buildings are the former school and (assumed) teachers quarters, to the left of them is the 'British style settlement' with dormer windows and above that the 'Cottage settlement'. The town centre is the tree covered area to the left of the station.

And if you look closely there's a train leaving the station:

Swinging round a little, this is almost the whole town from the same spot. The open area at the bottom is the site of the original Bagou coal mine. The old Zhongfu street is to the left of the new grey building and the main square is in the tree lined area above it.

This is a 'zoomed in' shot of the left side of the picture above with the train returning. The blue awning in the lower centre covered our holiday terrace:

This is the view of the town from the south-west on a slightly overcast day from a similar position to that used in the Jiayang Company's promotional poster. At the bottom is the (white) hospital and the main square and auditorium are clearly visible: 

Cutting through the slight morning haze, the train is passing the main square:

This was taken from a similar position nearby:

Further up this road a small outcrop can be used to photograph in both directions, here the afternoon train leaves Bagou for Huangcun:

And then returns ten minutes later:

As I write this page, it is raining hard enough for the water to be coming in through our roof, but only for the second time during our 25 day stay. By and large most rain fell at night and I would guess that we had significant amounts of sunshine on at least 10 days. Of course, at this time of year when it shines, the sun is very high for most of the day and only the first and last trains have a chance to run in good light. Necessarily only between Mifeng and Xianrenjiao is it likely to be good for smokebox first trains and since we were on holiday and have more than enough pictures on that section we didn't make the effort.

The extremes of Bagou weather are shown in the pictures above. It had been a great holiday, we had made a lot of interesting discoveries and we can't wait to get back for more of this very special area in China.

Rob Dickinson