Little Prince - Prince George, BC
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member T0SHEA
N 53° 54.297 W 122° 44.089
10U E 517422 N 5972979
Quick Description: Over a century old, an authentic little steam engine pulls trainloads of people around one of Prince George's busiest parks every summer. According to the Prince George Citizen, this is the last narrow gauge engine still running in Canada.
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Date Posted: 7/30/2019 2:38:02 PM
Waymark Code: WM111PJ
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Mark1962
Views: 1

Long Description:
In truth, when they make this claim we believe they are actually making the claim that this is the only 2 Foot gauge (actually 1 ft. 11 5/8 in.) narrow gauge engine operational in Canada. There are still a few other "Narrow Gauge" engines running in Canada, but they run on the larger 3' 6" gauge track. This, though, is the only narrow gauge engine which remains of the dozens the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway used to build its railroad across the country. When the railway was complete, they were cast aside as unwanted, burdensome junk.

You really don’t have to look far to find our history. In the summer you can ride the train in Fort George Park pulled by the ‘Little Prince’ steam engine, which turned 100 in 2012. In his book The Grand Trunk Pacific and other Fort George stuff, local historian Trelle Morrow describes how the six-ton engine was rescued from a scrap heap and used to be on display on First Avenue by the old train station. It was among dozens of ‘dinky’ engines that ran on narrow gauge rail and were used to construct the Grand Truck Pacific Railway.
From the Prince George Free Press
Affectionately known as the Little Prince Steam Engine, it has made its rounds nearly every year since 1978, when the Fort George Railway was first opened to the public. Were it not for a four year layoff caused by a gasket leak, the railroad would have entered its 41st season of chugging around the park in 2019. A little 0-4-0, wood burning engine, it runs on a 2 foot gauge track. The 1912 steam engine was originally built to construct the Grand Trunk Pacific railway and now carries visitors around Lheidli T'enneh Memorial Park each summer.

The engine is part of Exploration Place, a museum and science centre in Lheidli T'enneh Memorial Park. The museum and the Little Prince together form the major attraction in the park.

Unless you should happen to have a season's pass to ride the Fort George Railway, you'll need to buy a ticket to ride the train. The place one goes to purchase that ticket is also a miniature - a scaled down version of a small town railway station of the type which dotted the landscape from coast to coast a century ago. Not only is it a railway station, it is also an ice cream shop, the Hard Ice Cream Scoop Shop, where one can enjoy local, handmade, craft ice cream made right there in Prince George, BC. The ice cream is the handiwork of the Frozen Paddle Ice Creamery.

The news article below provides a bit more information on the Fort George Railway and the Little Prince.

The railroad wasn't running the day we visited, which meant we had no photos of the engine or the train, so we "borrowed" a couple from the railway for this Waymark.

The little train that could
Ashley MacDONALD | Staff writer | JULY 21, 2011
After a long history of being idle, the only operational narrow gauge steam engine in Canada is back in operation in Fort George Park.

The train, nicknamed The Little Prince, took its inaugural run on Canada Day 1978. It ran more or less every summer in Fort George Park until four years ago. The train had a gasket leak and at the time no one knew what was wrong, and the train came off the rails.

Because the train was derailed to repair the leak, it lost its safety certification. But for the first year since the leak, The Little Prince is running full steam ahead this summer. Its first run in four years was on Canada Day.

The Prince George Railway Society ran the train for years, until the city came to Exploration Place and asked them to take over the operation.

The railroad in the park is classified as real railroad and the same rules apply to them as any other railroad. "It's a real steam engine, it's not retrofitted, it's a full on steam engine," said [Tracy] Calogheros.

The engine was built in 1912 but didn't work until 1918, it was cast aside along with many other engines in the province. It sat in front of the Via Rail building on 1st avenue in a CN Rail garden as a display for 35 years... ...The was originally built by the Davenport (Iowa) Locomotive Works. Running a 10 horsepower boiler, operating at 160 pounds of pressure, The Little Prince burns roughly half a cord of wood per day. This engine and others like it were used to build the railroad grade for the Grand Trunk Pacific Railroad right across the country.
From the Prince George Citizen

Photo goes Here

Locomotive Type: (required): Steam

Do you need to pay an entrance fee to view this locomotive? (required): No

How accessible is this locomotive display? (Required): Only touching is allowed.

If "other" what is the engine type? (optional): Not listed

If a fee is required what is the approximate cost for admittance? (optional): Not listed

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