Larry specializes in Northwest road names such
as Great Northern, SP&S, Northern Pacific, Milwaukee Road, Union Pacific,
Southern Pacific, Burlington Northern, Burlington Northern Santa Fe, and so
forth. He models for the steam-to-diesel conversion years, about 1955 to 1965.
He has modeled in O-Gauge since a youngster, tutored and inspired by the late Spokane
Valley Hometown Hardware Owner Fred Hecker.
|Larry's first model engine was a Lionel
Santa Fe switcher purchased in the 1960s. This was the General Mills-owned era of Lionel
Mabton & Yakima Valley
Larry grew up around some of the great
Northwest rail lines. He watched the Northern Pacific steamers with bells ringing, switching at Mabton in the
& The Columbia Gorge
He saw and rode the SP&S 4-6-6-4 Challenger at Wishram and
watched trains lumbering through the Columbia Gorge on both Oregon and
Washington sides of the river. A favorite camping spot is Maryhill
State Park with views of the main BNSF line on one side of the river and
the Union Pacific on the south bank. A Great Northern Baldwin P-2 Mountain
steam engine (GN# 2507) is displayed at nearby Wishram due to the efforts
of Klickitat County. Larry remembers when the 4-8-2 P-2, repainted to SP&S
(Spokane, Portland, and Seattle) markings, was displayed during the 1960s
at Maryhill State Park. The engine was purchased from GN as a gift to the
county from SP&S. It was removed from the park for unsuccessful
restoration efforts in Pasco before BNSF brought it back to the county for
display at Wishram.
Hangman Valley & Spokane
heard the haunting horns of the
great Burlington Northern and Union Pacific diesels running along the cliffs of the Hangman Valley
to Latah Junction near Spokane. As an elementary school student in
Spokane, he rode the orange Great Northern Empire Builder cars pulled by an F3, his favorite consist.
Great Northern Station, Spokane, (Also used by SP&S)
Sketch by Wes Moline, Courtesy Bill Moline, Spokane
Pasco & the Columbia
As a newspaper reporter,
he wrote and photographed the last of the hobos at the Pasco, Wash. hump yards.
Olympia & South Puget Sound
is a volunteer at Centennial Station, southeast of Olympia Wash., and
south of Lacey along the Yelm Highway. This
is where the Amtrak Cascades (EMD F59 locomotive)Talgo train between
Portland or Eugene, Ore. and Seattle or Vancouver, B.C. stops multiple
times every day. It is the only station that serves the state capital and
was the first Amtrak
station in the United States staffed completely by volunteers. It is now
the fourth busiest station in Washington state. The
horn of the the Coast Starlight can easily be heard from his home as it
also makes a twice-daily Olympia stop on its passenger route between Seattle and Los Angeles.
The main track also carries freight trains under both Union Pacific and
Burlington Northern flags. It is the same track that carries the
rumbling Genesis engines and other trains by Safeco Field during a Seattle Mariners game.
MTH, Lionel, and QSIndustries
Larry's operating layout
utilizes features of the
Mike's Train House (MTH) Digital Command System (DCS). He also uses the Lionel Trainmaster
Command Control (TMCC) operating schemes. He has QSI and conventional
locomotives as well.
Larry working at Washington's all-volunteer Olympia-Lacey "Centennial" Station