Hi MidEngine, this image is amazing! We're doing a pop-up scare event and would love to use this image. Would this be okay with you? If so please email us at email@example.com and if you're in London when the event is on we'll sort you some free tickets! Hope to hear from you soon. Hannah
Niles Canyon Railway on the Edge of Silicon Valley. Same place where Charlie Chaplin filmed "The Tramp". The line currently runs between the Niles district of the city of Fremont (Where Tesla Motors builds its Model S sedan) to Sunol, but is currently being extended to the city of Pleasanton, CA.
What makes it a mallet (named for it's inventor, Anatole Mallet) is that the rear wheels are attached to the frame and the front wheels are free to pivot, to allow it to go around sharp curves. As well, one set of wheels is driven by high pressure steam cylinders while the other, low pressure cylinders, use the "recycled" steam exhausted from the high pressure cylinders. Great capture
My pleasure. A great book about mallets and other articulateds is "Articulated Steam Locomotives of North America: A Catalogue of Giant Steam" by Robert Le Massena. I had a copy but can't seem to find it right now.
Locos like this were popular with logging lines back in the day. Simpson Timber, Weyerhaeuser Timber Co., and Rayonier (mostly its predecessors), and others all liked this configuration. It was big enough to haul heavy strings of empties up to the landings in the hills, heavy enough to control those strings of loads coming back down towards the mill, all while being flexible enough to handle the rough, lightweight, curvy trackage that logging and timber companies were willing to build for the limited time that profitable timber available and the line would be in use in a particular area.