The Leclerc Creek & Western Railroad is a 1-1/2 inch (1/8) scale private “riding” railroad located in northeastern Washington. The track is 7-1/2 inch gauge.
The Leclerc Creek & Western (LC&W) has been a dream for many years, and is finally (slowly) becoming a reality. A diesel locomotive, a “slug” (powered, engineer’s riding car), a 40’ gondola, two 54’ flatcars, a boxcar, a caboose and a car (actually, two sets of trucks with bunks connected by a beam) to carry the 10-feet long track panels are completed and onsite.
Initial track construction began in August 2007 with the driveway crossing from the train “barn” to the woods. The cut through the bank was excavated in October. In 2008, track was laid to Cedar Snag Junction and a little beyond (toward Knapweed Flat wye). The 2009 construction season has extended the track to approximately station 4+60 (from the shop), with an additional 100 feet of roadbed in place.
In 2010, two concrete road crossings have been installed (formed and poured). One crossing was installed on Knapweed Flat to provide a route for accessing the upper area of the property without having to get there by road and through the upper gate. Track was removed and the crossing was installed from station 4+20 to 4+40. The second crossing was installed along the river to facilitate the annual installation and removal of the dock and the boat. The track has not yet been laid to this area, but now can be without hinderance.
2011 saw very little, but some progress. Over 800 feet of track, in 10-feet long panels, were assembled offsite over the winter. 200 feet of track has been laid out to approximately station 6+35. The first switch has been installed at the Knapweed Wye and a small segment of track, to station 0+05KN, has been installed on the north leg of the wye. Knapweed Wye will consist of three switches, which will allow the train to turn around (if desired) instead of descending through the timber to the river, and also provide a means of expanding a major spur into the upper meadow.
During 2012 an additional 180 feet of track and the second wye switch was installed, taking us out to station 8+25. This segment of track begins the downward grade to the river.
In 2013, 190 feet of track was installed, beginning the downgrade to the river, bringing the track to station 10+15.
In August 2014, the track reached the river’s edge … out to station 12+15! This was a major milestone in track construction.