The Spokane, Portland and Seattle had 3 4-8-4’s modeled after parent company Northern Pacific steamers – #700 is the only survivor. SP&S 700 was rebuilt in Portland and this trip in October of 1990 was its first major outing. The event was Washington Steamfest in Yakima on the Washington Central. This run included Portland to Pasco on former SP&S trackage, and then onto former Northern Pacific trackage to Prosser, Yakima, Ellensburg, and Cle Elum. The scenic Columbia Gorge and Yakima River Canyons form superb backgrounds for this lovely 4-8-4. There were three of these engines built to the NP 4-8-4 design and 700 is the sole survivor. In addition to the 700 we will also see Great Western 2-8-0 Number 51 running short trips and even meeting 700 at one location. 700 operated on short trips, dinner trains, and one-way trips that eventually took it back to Portland after the Steamfest was concluded. No diesel helpers on these trips, just 700 doing all the work. When this program was released on VHS it was 60 minutes. It has been re-edited and is now 90 minutes.
SP&S 700 at the Washington Steamfest
The Spokane, Portland and Seattle had 3 4-8-4’s modeled after parent company Northern Pacific steamers – #700 is the only survivor.
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