Romania - A Life Chasing Trains



Viseu de Sus is a rural valley in the north of Romania where in 2006 logs were still hauled to a mill by rail, and where steam survived.   My visit was October 7-13, 2006 on a trip arranged by Bernd Seiler of Farrails Tours.  There were actually two companies operating on the line, a lumber company that hauls logs to a sawmill, and a weekend  Swiss-owned tourist train operation.  As I understand it, the 760 mm gauge track is owned by the government (a holdover from the Communist era) so the logging company was somewhat reluctantly forced to allow the tourist railway to use "their" tracks.   The logging operation was largely dieselized, but retained several steamers in reserve, in varying conditions of operability.  The Swiss owned tourist operation had two steam engines which were kept in much better condition.  Our charter used engines from both operations, the nicer looking engines being from the tourist operation.  However all the rolling stock we used was from the logging company, and train operations were basically working logging trains, albeit with a few scheduling changes made to accommodate the photographers.  I believe both operations survive as of this writing in 2019, although I doubt the logging company still uses steam.