Lines – Wyoming Mainline
Top image: A freight pulls into Glenrock. The scenery is very temporary - painted masking tape over foam hills (the foam was "permanent"; the rest was for a photo in my helix building clinic for the NMRA.
The Wyoming Mainline of the CB&Q is the main focus of the layout. Everything on the layout exists to support this line. Unfortunately, I don't have a lot of photos, because I didn't get much of the line built before I had to disassemble it when I was transferred to South Carolina for work. But...
Here's the Wyoming Mainline on the lower level of the layout:
And here's the upper level of the Wyoming Mainline:
Tracing the stations, starting from Orin Junction and moving initially counter-clockwise on the lower level, and comparing them to the Wyoming Map page will help one get a feeling for how the layout arrangement correlates to the real Main through Wyoming.
From Thermopolis to Frannie the line runs through the Big Horn Basin. Between Thermopolis and Lovell, this is along the Big Horn River.
A note about Orin Junction: I would like to have included Torrington, the easternmost CB&Q station on the line on the layout, but the layout is already pretty packed, and there just wasn't room to stuff it in without losing too much elsewhere. Orin Junction seemed like a decent place to stop, since it allows me to combine two junctions at opposite ends of the modeled portions of the line - Orin and Frannie. There are some pretty big operational advantages to this. Still, I can accomplish the same thing as the current design does by renaming Orin to Wendover, the junction between the CB&Q east and the Colorado & Southern south to Cheyenne. This would be a name-only change, but then I would be missing Orin, which would be the only major station / feature on the real railroad that would not be on the layout (minor stations, such as Kirby, where a short branch to Gebo took off, and Basin and Cowley, don't count). But I may be able to treat Orin like I do Shobon, with just a switch off the main leading to staging tracks that would represent the C&NW east to Lusk and Nebraska, and fit it in between Douglas and what is now labeled Orin Junction. If I can find a spot for another hidden staging yard I'll probably do it, but until then, it'll remain Orin Junction / Frannie.
Let's start at Orin Junction and proceed northwest through the state. Selecting the station name in each short paragraph below will take the reader to a more detailed description and sometimes photos of both the station on the layout, and, wherever possible, of the prototype site itself.
Orin Junction. As I mentioned on other pages, this is the southeastern-most modeled portion of the layout, and represents the junction of the C&NW Line from Nebraska with the CB&Q and C&S lines from Torrington and Cheyenne. The Orin Junction page also includes Frannie, since these two locations share layout facilities.
Douglas. This is the first stop on the layout (and in real life) north of Orin Junction; in the case of the layout, literally right around the bend, and nearly so in the real world, as well.
Helix. As you might guess, this isn't a place on the real railroad. It's just how I get from one level to another on the model.
Glenrock. Situated between Douglas and Casper. It contributed much more to the railroads than its small size would lead one to believe.
Casper. The biggest town, and the only real classification yard and engine serviciing facilities, are located here, along with quite a few industries.
Powder River. A tiny little town about 35 miles west of Casper, its only contribution to the layout is shipment of livestock. This page is combined with Shobon.
Shobon. This is the junction where the CNW heads southwest to Riverton (staging), and the CB&Q heads north towards Thermopolis. This page is combined with Powder River.
Wind River Canyon. This isn't a location for train operation - its a real-life location included especially for train watching.
Thermopolis. This medium-sized (for Wyoming) town has always been something of a resort, due to the hot springs in the area.
Worland. Situated along the Big Horn River (the Wind River farther south - see the Worland page), Worland's primary industries are agriculture and sugar.
Basin. This small town sits on the bank of the Big Horn River.
Helix. Here it is again, on the way down.
Greybull. Another little town situated on the Big Horn River, this one includes some bentonite mining.
Lovell. Yet another small town, at least this one isn't right on the river! It boasts a wallboard plant and a bentonite foundry.
Frannie. Finally! The northernmost point on the Wyoming Mainline, as modeled. If you've looked at Orin Junction, you've already seen Frannie, too, but you may want to look again just to finish the trip!