Tourist train at Smigiel on 3 May 2012. Photo Pawel Jakuboszczak.
(Click to see the original photo and several others on www.750mm.pl)
The operating length of the Smigiel narrow gauge railway has been extended by 3km to Nowa Wies. The first public train will run over the reopened section this Sunday 11 November at 12:00. Together with the 5km from Stare Bojanowo to Smigiel this brings the total length in use to 8km of the 24km long line. There are also plans to reopen the 4km section between Nowa Wies and Bielawy.
The full plan for Sunday’s event is:
- 10:00 Smigiel – Stare Bojanowo – Smigiel with photo stops.
- 12:00 Smigiel – Nowa Wies – Smigiel with photo stops.
- 13:00 Smigiel – Stare Bojanowo – Smigiel (no photo stops).
- 14:00 Smigiel – Nowa Wies – Smigiel (no photo stops).
Diesel locomotive Lxd2-241 will haul the Stare Bojanowo trains, diesel railcar MBxd2-226 the Nowa Wies trains. Fares are 10zl for the trains with photo stops and 5zl for those without.
Details of Sunday’s event were published on the website www.kolejka.smigiel.pl on Wednesday 7 November, unfortunately giving prospective visitors just four days notice!
The first year of the tourist operation has been a mixed experience for the new local council operators. While some events proved very popular, especially the early season school specials which carried around 600 children, and the public trains on 3 May which carried a total of 300 passengers, numbers dropped to around 100 for the ‘Smigiel days’ event on 26 May, and several planned trains were cancelled, on 23 June, 12 and 15-19 August. Rail enthusiasts were also dismayed by the sale for scrap of most of the transporter wagons previously used to carry standard gauge freight wagons on the narrow gauge line, the abandonment of the lines running into the PKP passenger station and freight interchange, as well as by the sale of two of the line’s Lxd2 locomotives.