Baiyin Mineral Railway

The Baiyin Non-Ferrous Metals Company operates a number of mines and smelters in the Baiyin area of Gansu Province in northwestern China. The company produces copper, aluminium and other metals and the complex is served by a network of railways that extends out of the industrial area into the mountains to the north. The whole operation was steam worked with a small fleet of SYs providing the motive power for ore, chemical and passenger trains. The first diesels arrived in early 2010.

50 pictures

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Benxi Steelworks

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Benxi Steelworks still used some unusual steam locomotives in 1992, including a USATC 0-6-0 tank and an 0-4-0 fireless. There are a couple of diesels and electrics here as well.

5 pictures

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Fuxin Mining Railway

Fuxin, in Liaoning Province, has been a major coal mining centre for many years. The industry is now in steep decline and a number of the area's mines have recently closed, robbing the railway of much of its traffic. The extensive electric system serving the opencast mine has largely closed and the remnants have been dewired. The remaining lines are mainly steam worked, albeit with reduced traffic and a couple of diesels handling some of what remains. The passenger service ceased in mid 2012.

51 pictures

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Fula'erji Industrial Railways

Fula’erji is an industrial town on the Nenjiang (Nen River) about 30 km south-west of Qiqiha’er and is home to a number of large industrial plants, several of which have their own rail systems. This gallery contains pictures of the smart JS class locos working at the No.2 Power Station and the scruffy SY class at the Heilongjiang Chemical Plant.

9 pictures

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Beitai Steelworks

Beitai Steelworks has long been one of the most difficult industrial locations to photograph steam but official visits recently became possible, at a price. We had a two day visit in November 2011 and found it a fascinating and rewarding place to photograph steam locomotives at work as well as other aspects of the steel production process such as pouring iron and slag tipping.

29 pictures

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Jiayang (Shibanxi) NG Railway

This isolated narrow gauge operation is an absolute delight. The scenery is superb, the gradients are steep, the rolling stock is in a class of its own and the locals are friendly. All it needs is some sunshine to bring it to life. The catch is that this part of Sichuan experiences more cloudy, wet weather than Manchester. Fortunately the clouds do break occasionally.

23 pictures

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Nanpiao Mining Railway

Nanpiao's mines are running down and the whole system had an air of decline about it. However, the line is steeply graded and runs through attractive country so it was possible to get good pictures in steam days, particularly if there was some snow on the ground. The line is now totally dieselised.

20 pictures

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Pingdingshan Mining Railway

The Pingdingshan Coal Company runs one of the most extensive industrial railways in China. The system serves over a dozen mines in the Pingdingshan and Baofeng areas of Henan Province in central China and used around 20 steam locomotives of three different classes before dieselisation.

24 pictures

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Tongchuan Mining Railway

The Tongchuan line was unique for keeping JF class 2-8-2s in service until the end of 2004, long after the rest of the class had been withdrawn. It was a very scenic line that climbed to mines high into the hills making the old locos work for their living. Unfortunately the weather around Tongchuan was notoriously bad with poor visibility being normal for most of the winter. The line is now totally diesel worked.

6 pictures

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Yuanbaoshan Mining Railway

The Yuanbaoshan Mining Railway serves a number of coal mines and a major power station south of Chifeng in eastern Inner Mongolia. The line's main claim to fame was its fleet of smoke-deflector fitted JS class 2-8-2s. These attractive engines were kept very clean and made excellent photographic subjects.

6 pictures

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