Doubling the Illecillewaet Valley to Glacier and
Following World War I increased traffic put a great strain on the
Canadian Pacific Railway’s main line through the Rockies and the
Selkirk Mountains. In order to keep the mainline fluid over the Selkirks
and the Rockies the Canadian Pacific built larger and more powerful
steam locomotives culminating in class T1a, a 2-10-4 wheeler. The
name "Selkirk" was chosen after the mountain range through which the
mainline traversed in Rogers Pass.
Numbers 5900 to 5919 were built in 1929. These locomotives weighed
375 short tons (340 metric tonnes) fully loaded. Another ten numbered
5020 to 5929 were built in 1938 and the final 6 numbers 5930 to 5935
in 1949. Number 5935 was the last steam locomotive built for the
Canadian Pacific Railway.
The Selkirk was very successful mountain locomotive. It operated
between Calgary and Revelstoke over the Kicking Horse Pass and
Rogers Pass and from Revelstoke to Taft over the Eagle Pass. Due to
their extreme weight they could not proceed any further towards
Also useful in the mountains were the 2-10-0, class R3 Decapods of the
5700 series, built between 1917 and 1919. The R3s were used
extensively in a variety of services from pushers and main line freight
engines to heavy switchers in the yards at Field and Revelstoke.
Passenger locomotives for main line service were more limited in the
number of types. After the replacement of the early 4-4-0s in the late
1800s, Ten-wheelers were commonly used. These were not large
locomotives and they required helpers on the mountain sections.
During the 1920s, the route between Field and Revelstoke was the
serviced by P1 class 2-8-2s. These were eventually replaced by the
In the Selkirk Mountains, locomotives were often teamed to assist
both freight and passenger trains up the steep grades. At the top of
the grade the helpers would be cut out and return west from Glacier
in Rogers Pass and east from Clanwiliam in the Eagle Pass to
Revelstoke. At Glacier there was a unique “Y” for turning locomotives.
The tail of the Y was actually in a tunnel as there was insufficient
room in the pass to construct the Y.
On John’s layout, the Y at Glacier was not modelled and helper
locomotives reversed light back to Revelstoke.
Time required to complete: Approximately 1 hour.
From file JM-09RR.rrw:
Turn locomotive CP 4113 and place at coaling tower.
Select Revelstoke yard switcher CP 962 and add hopper cars CP 430,
CP 431, CP 569, GT 75169, GT 75190 and CP 354594 to consist on
the through freight track (third track from station).
Move locomotive CP 4113 to the watering spout.
Move locomotive CP 4111 to the coaling tower.
Return Revelstoke yard switcher CP 962 to the servicing yard.
Move locomotive CP 4113 to the head end of the consist on the
through freight track (third track from station).
Move locomotive CP 4111 to the watering spout.
Move locomotive CP 4111 to the head end of the consist on the
through freight track (third track from station)
Proceed via Albert Canyon to Glacier.
Remove helper locomotive CP 4111.
Proceed with locomotive CP 4113 to Field.
Return helper locomotive CP 4111 to Revelstoke servicing yard.
Save file as JM-10RR.rrw.