The International Steam Pages

Those were the days... Simón Bolivar Sugar Mill

This is one of a series of pages showing my pictures of Cuban narrow gauge steam at work in the closing years.

Simón Bolivar (Mill 448)  was one of a pair of mills of unusual 2'3½" gauge, east of Caibarién. While its locomotives were invariably scruffy, the 'bank at Bolivar' was one of the stiffest tasks on the narrow gauge in Cuba, a steep climb for empties up to the plateau south of the mill - unfortunately I only saw workings on it during one of my visits.

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Nothing much was going on when I visited with Chris and Steve on 18th February 1996, 1363 (Baldwin 2-8-0) posed for a portrait shot.

Small Baldwin 2-6-0 1138 was on patio duty, the lack of activity was not disastrous as we caught 1366 working at nearby Obdulio Morales.

Much of the ascent was through a forested area with no road access and this was 1360 hard at work on 25th February 1997.

Having seen it climbing, we tramped back up and found 1360 watering at the top. It was a frustrating day with clouds coming over at the wrong time!

1367 (Baldwin 2-8-0) was apparently built for the 2'6" gauge at Noel Fernandez mill. On 12th March 1997, it was photographed on the approach to the main climb south of Centeno in the afternoon.

This is two days earlier further up from the opposite side to 1360 seen above.

This is 1367 coming down on the 12th March 1997 visit. 

Click here for the 'Those were the days' index page.

Rob Dickinson