Thank You

At the conclusion of a successful and historic steam excursion, Montana By Steam, the PRPA would like to thank the following for their parts in making it work.

  • Ticket purchasers. - You folks truly provided the "fuel" for this endeavor. A steam excursion is one of those few instances in life when watching your dollars go up in smoke really is the right thing to do and we thank you for having done it.

  • Concessions purchasers. - Both on the train purchasing MRRT concessions and on the ground purchasing PRPA concessions, you folks provided essential revenue for which we are grateful. Remember to stay tuned for the videos in a few months. The Skyfire camera crews were elated each day with their results and you will be pleased as well.

  • Montana Rockies Rail Tours. - While the SP&S 700 was the star or the "draw" of the show, this was MRRT's excursion and we were simply under contract to provide motive power. While standing on the ground to watch a run-by at Paradise, MT, some of us were speaking with Warren McGee (a well-known railroad historian and photographer), who stated emphatically that that this was "the best railfan trip he had ever been on". While some of his pleasure could naturally be attributed to seeing the first steam over that section of NP track since the retirement of NP steam 45 years ago, Warren made it clear that he was talking about the entire experience, such as service in the cars, the food, and yes, even the weather.

    Montana Rockies Rail Tours runs great railfan trips even when not being pulled by the SP&S 700. The surest way to bring about a repeat of this trip is to support MRRT by riding their normal diesel excursions in the meantime. While we can't guarantee a repeat of the weather, you will experience the same great scenery and service.

  • Ken Keeler of MRRT - Ken was our point of contact with MRRT and was a pleasure to work with. Also, every good group effort has a person who was the original champion of the idea and who then sells enough other people on the idea to make it happen. Ken was that person.

  • Montana Rail Link - We thank MRL, and particularly Bill Brodsky and Bob Bateman, for their warm Montana hospitality while on their track, which is where the excursion took place. We felt truly welcome.

  • Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad - In the days just prior to departure from Brooklyn, news of the impending end to the dock strike was frankly unwelcome news as we visualized having to sit on sidings endlessly watching containers go whizzing by during our two ferry moves on BNSF track between Vancouver and Spokane. BNSF probably could have justifiably let it happen that way, but they didn't and we thank them for two surprisingly expeditious ferry moves.

  • Union Pacific Railroad - The track between Brooklyn Yard and Union Station is a very busy section and we thank UP for once again getting us in and out.

  • Jim Schwinkendorf and Jeff Schmid - Jim is a retired BNSF employee now consulting as "Hot Rail Services" on mainline steam excursions and Jeff is a BNSF employee who has about 15 years of steam excursion experience as an engineer on the Frisco 1522 and SLSTA board member. Smoothing the way on BNSF track is just one of the many things they did for us.

  • Doyle McCormack - Once again, Doyle painted the 700 for us shortly before the big trip. Other members of his crew also pitched in and helped us get out the door. Finally, we thank Doyle for his continuing generosity in allowing us usage of his tools and equipment in and around the roundhouse.

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