Deep within the opencast pit coal mine of Sandaoling, JS #6209 thunders past JS #8167 at the BaErZhan siding. JS6209 is hauling a 1300 ton coal train out of the big pit, and the engineer is using the slight 0.5% grade at the siding to gather speed for the steep climb ahead. Soon the train with hit the brunt of the 4 mile grade, a 2+% climb with sharp curves.
As soon as JS6209 clear the block, the signalman at BaErZhan will let JS8167 coast down to be loaded at the flood loader, just half a mile below this siding.
The Sandaoling Coal Railway employs 10+ JS 2-8-2s, running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, year round, proving that a decade after the JiTong Railway dieselized, China is still THE destination for Real steam.