The International Steam Pages
Paraguay Steams On Sometimes...., 2013
This first hand account comes from Frank Ludwig (28th April 2013).
Previously Asunción resident Renaud Olgiati sent some notes (22nd October 2012) on actual and proposed developments, necessarily not 100% steam related. For pictures of the last tourist train between Botanico and Luque see http://www.fotobohemio.com/v1/2012/09/el-ultimo-viaje/ (added 30th April 2013)
On a recent visit to Posadas (Argentina) on March 14th, 2013, Encarnación (Paraguay) on March 15th, Concepción del Uruguay (Argentina) on March 17th, Tandil (300 km south of Buenos Aires, Argentina) on March 20th, I encountered the following situation:
Former passenger station cut off from existing railroad track across the Paraná river. Two unidentified steam locos in poor shape on display. These were reported by Neil Edwards in 2009 to be 252 4-6-0 (Baldwin 32578/1908) and 602 4-6-0 (Baldwin 33039/1908). The upper locomotive is 602 and the lower one 252.
According to Paraguay Railway staff on duty (one out of still four left in total) there is an irregular freight service (presently every two to three weeks) across the international bridge served by ALL. Traffic unfortunately is down considerably after major flooding kept the ALL line closed south of Posadas for a long period of time. Steam locomotives are still being used when there is some major shunting to be done. Serviceable seem to be #59, 60, 101 and 104 with #524 dumped derelict.
On the day of my visit I was lucky to watch ALL # 6954 entering Encarción freight yard (ca. 500m beyond the international bridge) to pick up a relatively long freight train of empties to be taken back to Argentina. Unfortunately it did all the necessary shunting by itself (I would guess that this is the normal situation....) Some wagon unloading/loading activities could be observed however. So let us hope that traffic will pick up again in the future....
3) Concepción del Uruguay
6 steam locos dumped at station (two in shed) in poor shape: #203?, 204?, 3014?, other three without numbers (World of South American Steam shows 3014 to be one of a batch of 2-10-0s supplied by Henschel in 1952-3 which operated on the standard gauge FN General Urquiza)
Two more steam locos are on 'display' near the station: # 3947 and an awfully painted loco - or what is left of it - (World of South American Steam shows 3947 to be one of a batch of 4-6-2s supplied by Vulcan Foundry, 4818/1938, which operated on the broad gauge FN General Roca. According to this page - http://vapor-steam.blogspot.co.uk/search/label/Vapor%20Tandil - the other locomotive is 4114, a 2-8-0 supplied by Beyer Peacock, 5695/1913):