Sumpter's "Stump Dodger" plies its trade. Sumpter Valley Mikado #19 demonstrates the line's "raison d'etre" as she hauls loads of logs out of the forests in Eastern Oregon, toward "civilization" back in Baker City.
Because of the extensive gold dredging along the Powder River in the early 1900s, much of the 5-mile right of way of the current Sumpter Valley Railroad is devoid of trees. The line is pretty wide-open. That's in stark contrast to the way most of the original Sumpter Valley Railway was back in its hey-day. They didn't call it the "Stump Dodger" for nothing. The line ran through a lot of tall timber country, where logging was the primary industry. Fortunately, the current line does have a few spots where one can recreate the look and feel of the old line and the little rock cut pictured here is one of them. On this day, Old Number 19 does the honors, playing hide and seek in the tree shadows, with a consist similar to what she would have handled some 90 years earlier.