ExactRail is pleased to have attended the Western Prototype Modelers (WPM) meet in San Bernardino, CA. Our genuine compliments to WPM for having organized such a great event! The list of presenters was exceptional, and we are so pleased to have been included among them.
We would like to offer a special thanks to the hospitality of Dave Hussey of Cannon & Company, Jay Styron, Don Delay, Tim Costello of the La Mesa Railroad Club, Joe D'Elia of Proto Power West, Brian Rutherford, and Elizabeth Allen. Also, we would like to offer our compliments to the presenters, Bob Zenk, Scott Chatfield, Butch Eyler and Bill Schaumburg--their presentations were indeed excellent!
In addition to WPM, we visited various railroad locales on Union Pacific's LA&SL route. In the picture below, a westbound double stack passes the Kelso Club after having descended 17.3 miles of 2.2% grade from the Cima summit. Cima is one of the more formidable obstacles in Western railroading. When compared to Cajon's North Track, Tehachapi, and Donner, Cima climbs higher in the same distance.
Given my personal modeling interests, I've long wanted to visit Kelso. The Kelso Club itself is a fatuous eccentricity in the massive expanse of the Mojave Desert. Built in 1923, the depot is both the paradigm of LA&SL mission-style architecture, and at the same time, an absolute oddity. In over 2,000 square miles, there is nothing which would portend the presence of this beautiful structure. Yet, if your desert sojourn should have you traveling on Kelbaker road, it is as though it rises up out of the sand and bites you. And then, unless you've slowed for the crossing, it's gone at 65 miles per hour.
Click on a photo to see it full-size
Blaine at ExactRail's display
Blaine presenting on tooling
and model production
Kelso Club, Mojave