Railway Preservation News

The Summer of 1972- Logging with steam
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Author:  tom moungovan [ Thu Jul 21, 2022 12:49 am ]
Post subject:  The Summer of 1972- Logging with steam

It should be noted that there was another aspect of the K&HV.

Five days a week, Gus Peterson's Klamath mill was running. It took Redwood logs to keep it fed. This was accomplished through the railroad. Gus had a self-propelled crane and a flat car with no air. He'd head down out of the mill early in the morning, usually ahead of the Heisler and enter into a spur just past the creek and where the grade started over the hill to the highway. Simpson Tbr. Co. would sell him logs which he would load on the flat and then take them to the mill.

We would watch out for each other during the day and never did have an incident. Well, there was this one time...but that's another story.

Anyway, one day towards the middle of summer, the girls and I were bringing the 10 back, light engine, to the shed in the late afternoon.

Gus was standing at the switch to the landing and flagged us down. I thought maybe something had happened to the track. He wanted us to take him back to the mill. He was smiling while saying this so I knew everything was ok.

I'd never been in there before, but had the presence of mind to lay sand while easing over all of the Redwood bark that covered the rails. We got out of there just fine and enjoyed a little work while getting back up the creek to the mill.

I did this a few more times that summer. One particular day was on July 31. Dave Sell was with me and he took slides with my Pentax and also 2 1/4" square black and white negatives with his Yashica. I still have these.

One afternoon in late August, I had Dan's oldest son David for my fireman. He was only 13, but his dad had taught him well. He was a real pistol of a fireman and went right after it when he needed to. We had the 17 that day, the first time that I'd ever run her. She did alright with the train and I had no problems with adhesion on the 8.6%.

Well, Gus stopped us 'cause he wanted to see how 17 would do with the logs. I was really wary while easing into the landing and felt like I'd expended most of our sand while doing so. We got out of there with just a couple of quarter-slips.

These incidents were all part of my work day, No special advertised events, no chartered railfan excursions, just taking Redwood logs to a working mill and getting paid for it. I still have my pay stubs for that summer and they remain among my most cherished keepsakes. All this with a former Pickering Lbr. Corp. geared engine and a former Hammond Lbr. Co. rod engine.

Author:  JDLX [ Sat Jul 23, 2022 1:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Summer of 1972- Logging with steam

Since Tom mentioned the crane, here is an otherwise uncredited picture I picked up of the crane.

PetersonLumberCrane_noinfosmall.jpg [ 209.47 KiB | Viewed 1454 times ]

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV

Author:  Les Beckman [ Mon Jul 25, 2022 1:15 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Summer of 1972- Logging with steam

Thanks for posting that picture Jeff. Love that crane!


Author:  QJdriver [ Wed Jul 27, 2022 8:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Summer of 1972- Logging with steam

And thanks for posting this story, Tom. I trust they paid into Railroad Retirement, too.

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