The Pacific Northwest Tour, 2003
Idaho Northern - Joseph Branch
this line is about 84 miles, and was built to serve agricultural and timber businesses in the region, starting the the late 1880s' and being completed to Joseph in the early 1920's.
The destination of this trip is a town named after an Indian Chief of the Area, Chief Joseph. This line prompted my memory of the track up to Burra in South Australia, with its small towns and numbers of silos ("elevators"). Like other lines we ran, this trip followd a river valley, in this case that of the Wallowa River.
A state operating company, the Wallowa Union Rail Authority own the line, but contract the INP to run services. These extended from LaGrande to Wallowa only, with the last 24 miles not seeing a train for several years. The Authority are currently running passenger trains on this line.
A highlight of this journey was to stay in a typical lodge at Lake Wallowa, and to visit some of the shops on the Town of Joseph. This town is apparently the home of Bronze casting in the US.We travelled up to Joseph Wednesday June 18, returning Friday June 20, 2003.
Carl Vanderspek, John, George and Irene Hope, Molson, and everyone kindly hosted a "Meet the Aussie Night" during the stopover. This was a great way to meet everyone. My supply of Oz bits vanished faster than the beer.
I did take some pictures in Joseph, but sadly, seem to have misplaced the film.
I made the return Journey with Jim Hasker in his M19 - pity mine didn't fit in the bags, could have kept him company.
Lunch Stop At Rondowa
Lunch Stop at Rondowa
The Spicers car on the Prairie, not far from Joseph.
Locking down at Joseph.
Just a few minutes - from Dark -
To lIght. The Spicers car at Joseph - getting ready to head back to Island City
Just about ready to leave Jospeh.
Jims M19 and an MT14
Teh rest of the cars join up. I recall this at being Wallowa, where rail operations currently end.
Crossing at Rondowa on the way back,
It was good to catch up with Chuck Lee - Here at the set off.
RIP Chuck - who passed away September 2010
Site and contents © Nic Doncaster and John Black, 2003