RailPictures.Net Photo: WPY 1 White Pass & Yukon Route Steam Rotary Snow Plow at Bennett, British Columbia, Canada by Kevin Madore
 
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White Pass & Yukon Route (more..)
Steam Rotary Snow Plow (more..)
Bennett Station (MP 40.0) (more..)
Bennett, British Columbia, Canada (more..)
April 28, 2011
Locomotive No./Train ID Photographer
WPY 1 (more..)
WPY Rotary Fleet (more..)
Kevin Madore (more..)
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Remarks & Notes 
Hey, buddy! Rotary snow plows are NOT allowed on the platform! I'm not sure I had ever seen a photo of a rotary plow being used to clear a station platform, nor could I recall ever hearing about such a thing....until I saw it with my own eyes. In this scene, White Pass Rotary #1, pushed by the line's two steam engines, does indeed clear the platform at the Bennett, BC Station and Dining Hall. Fortunately, the platform is deserted today, and the first floor windows are all boarded up.

These days, the White Pass is a pure tourist line, which operates from early May to late September. During the other 7 months of the year, the line virtually hibernates, as the Alaskan and Canadian winters are long, dark and harsh. Over that time, quite a bit of snow falls...and just accumulates, because no line maintenance is done. To make matters worse, this station is located on the southern tip of the 27 mile-long Bennett Lake. The strong north winds often scour the loose snow off the frozen lake and deposit it up against the first obstacle on the leeward shore....meaning right here. Every spring, when the railroad folks come to Bennett to open up shop, they find a massive drift in front of the station, often with the consistency of concrete. As you can see, on this occasion, that drift basically covers the first story of the building. On most years, this accumulated snow would be removed by large Caterpillar Bulldozers. In 2011 however, the White Pass elected to bring out it's 113 year-old rotary plow, partly for the purpose of doing recurrent crew training, but mostly.....because they could. When you run the most popular tourist railroad in North America, and you carry 300,000+ people up the hill at $122 a pop each season, you can do stuff like that!

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Photos of the spring 2011 line clearing operation featuring White Pass Rotary #1 and Steam Locomotives 73 and 69. April 25-28, 2011.
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