The International Steam Pages
Steam in China, May 2000
Peter-H Patt reports briefly on the latest Intra-Express China tour.
Has received a batch of DF4 (6 in total) which has eliminated all steam haulage of passenger trains to/from Da'an (except the daily mixed to Taiyangshen). The tourist train Y268/7 is now DFH3 + DFH3 hauled throughout. The Da'an depot hosts 33 QJs at the moment with an expected delivery of more DF4 at the end of September. A new diesel repair shop has been erected beside the steam maintenance area to cover the new duties. The line to Changchun/Qianguo is mostly diesel on freights now as well; we saw only 20 % of all freight trains QJ hauled. On the line to Rangholu most freights are still QJ, the traffic level was high with 16 trains during daylight (04:00 - 19:00), out of which 3 were DF4.
No changes here, although only a reduced number of coal trains were hauled, the traffic level is still high with 8-13 trains during daylight.
Busy as usual. The current 5-year-plan does not foresee any change in steam operations. The photospot at the Chengde prison is spoiled now by new, massive poles which have been erected very close to the track.
Still all steam although a DFH3 was found at Zhoukou depot. The only passenger train (06.36 departing Luohe, returning 20.30) is QJ hauled (with a loco change at Zhoukou). Currently, the turntable at Zhoukou does not work, thus all locos face chimney westward and 50 % of the trains are tender first.
The mining system is very busy and nearly all steam. A few diesel shunters have been seen but no movement could be recorded. Shift changes at 08.00, 16.00 and 00.00 which are good times to visit the shed because all crews will change here. The passenger trains still run with JS or SY.