Mat Thompson's
Oregon Coast Railroad
June 17, 2007

On Father's Day, June 17, 2007, Mat Thompson graciously opened his home for a layout tour of the Oregon Coast Railroad. Mat's full basement freelanced railroad follows the area covering Portland to and through Astoria, Oregon along the Columbia River. A transition railroad with 2-8-8-2 mainline steam and first generation diesels all idled or operated complete with sound. Set up to run point to point, Mat used his hidden yard to allow his consists to run in a continuous loop for our viewing pleasure.

On one upper level, the presence of a steam donkey and crane permitted the loading of logs on railcars for the eventual shipping to the coast for loading aboard ship. As always, Shays are on hand for yard work and timber railroad haul outs. As a consist is created, the engine and caboose are assigned. As the operator controls his train using Digitrax DCC, they drive towards the port Astoria. Passing through many small towns, Mat has captured many little vignettes behind his scratch built houses and businesses. Periodically spaced are yards and division points for railroad classification.

One neat trick is squeezing in more scenery when the railroad's design makes certain track work difficult to install. Case in point, using a rather large building in the foreground as a shield, Mat creatively uses another warehouse building behind it to hide the curving track of this right a way. A scene block is another name that could be assigned, but smart it is in the design and something the viewer me, didn't notice until it was explained.

Our host has presented a glimpse into west coast logging and the transportation of those materials to port. Utilizing his creative skills for scratch building structures, when Mat Thompson's layout is complete, we'll have yet another opportunity to visit a "master's" approach to planning and building a creative layout.

Return to Layout Tours

Album generated by JAlbum 6.5