Rocky Mountain model train

Bob’s been in touch with his Rocky Mountain model train layout:

“Although residing in Houston, I love to travel to North American mountains, particularly the Rocky Mountains.

I deeply enjoy several railroad liveries. Although I grew up in Oklahoma ( ATSF Country), I also enjoy many other schemes.

After moving to another home, I have limited space for an HO layout and decided to migrate to N scale.

I still enjoy Ho and have retained one track for HO trains.

Because of space and radius limitations, I decided to make several ovals with a rural city and a mountain/Train garage.

You should notice that there are 5 separate N scale tracks and one HO track. Separate power supplies are available for each track.

This allows me to hide trains in the mountain and roll them into action when desired.

This provides great pleasure when working with limited space.

I also enjoy trading on Ebay and enjoy buying non-working equipment for repairs/restoration and use or resale.

I call my layout “ Rocky Mountain Junction” so as to represent the many rail lines in or near the Rocky Mountains.

As town scenery varies little from the Mexico border to central Canada. Switching rail lines is a simple operation.

I have tons of rolling stock and can display many combinations.

I hope you enjoy the attached pictures.

My train departure schedule is also attached.

Best Regards,

Robert (Bob) Williams”

Rocky mountain model train ATSF Freight  with Kato SD40 leading 2ea Bachmann GP40

rocky mountain  model train Kato VIA E8-9  with Pacific Fruit Reefer

Rocky mountain model train Life-Like F7 Union Pacific Seatle Rose

Mountain City with outer HO track and Southern Pacific Daylight

Mountain Train Garage with upper scenic Tourist Train

model train track plan

Union Pacific Freight with Kato  ES44AC leading 2 ea  Bachmann GP50

A big thanks to Bob – I know what he means about ebay – there’s some great stuff to chop up or trade at the moment (latest ebay cheat sheet here).

And I wanted to thank everyone for all the comments on the last few posts, especially Arnie’s. I do enjoy reading them.

Please do keep ’em coming.



PS The Beginner’s guide is here if you’re feeling inspired.

28 Responses to Rocky Mountain model train

  1. John Meehan says:

    Looks great Bob! I’m in a similar situation. Well done!

  2. Roy says:

    Hi Bob, great layout as you say space needed why in n gauge, mine too is n but English side of it, 16 X 12 got it in one one small bedrooms, was bigger at one time but when moving to diffident places had to size down. I have done the train ride from Vancouver to Montreal great journey, spent most of the time videoing up stairs and love to do it again. Roy England North Somerset.

  3. David Whatley says:

    Very well made for a small area, I like N and HO scales also. Your Sean looks like the area witch I have been there. I like your rocks and the job you did with your trees. Thanks for showing it to us, Dave Whatley in Savannah, Ga.

  4. Dave Fairfull says:

    A very good idea Robert. I love the separate power sources. Thanks for sharing your ideas.
    Dave F

  5. dewaine says:

    could someone show all the different scale of track there is out there. something good to show a newbie, i know some of the scales but not all. cheers dewaine.

  6. LLOYD NUNNERY says:

    Enjoy pictures of your layouts.I at one time had my double car garage (never was a garage, with 6 children I turned it into a play room when we built the house) covered with a HO train layout. Mountains, towns, cement plant, airport, stock yards etc. I could run four trains at one time. Then the grand kids came along so the train set had to go. Now the kids and grand kids are gone so it’s an office for my wife and myself. I have my freight and diesel engines along with sound equipt. packed up in hopes of maybe a smaller layout one day.

  7. Pete Evangel says:

    Very well done. I like the idea of hiding non running stuff in the mountain. I didnt notice you saying, but what are the overall dimensions? Looks like quite a good size amount of space. What portal did you use to run 2 N tracks and 1 HO track through?
    Pete-Still Sunny Calif.

  8. ronald foster says:

    I have N gauge track and I need some points change it but they are stock down with balas how can I remove the balas to change the points
    Thanking you Ronald Foster

  9. yeeeow Bob pretty inovative pike !!!
    the HO oval along with N gauge combo is something I always wanted to do too…verry koool
    keep em runnin fellas
    StJohn in Long Beach calif

  10. Bob Easley Sr. says:

    The pictures are great, but I’d like see how you handle the back side of the mountains and tunnels in case of derailments inside.


  11. Paul says:

    Really a beautiful layout. Thanks for letting us all see it.

    NOW, will you tell us the overall size? I would also be interested in the type of benchwork you used. Thank you.

    Paul in Richwood, TX

  12. Robin Hallam says:

    small scale and space, yet a big layout. What type of foam did you use for the mountains? Interesting to note the two different gauge of track,

  13. Ian Mc Donald says:

    nice layout hiding trains in the mountain nice idea. 2 scales is also an idea I will put in my next lay out .every couple of years I change my lay out. well done.

  14. paul Otway says:

    Pour boiling hot water on the balsa, that melts the glue.

    Nice layout.

  15. T. Olivar says:

    Ronald Foster
    To remove a track from it’s baseboard, I recommend a artist’s pallet knife. a pallet knife that has a handle that is elevated from the blade at about a 30 degree angle. Slide the knife blade between track ties and work it side-to-side to get the blade under the tie itself. Do this to each of the ties under the turnout switch-point that you want to remove. You can then knock off the ballast material that is stuck to the ties and reuse later.
    T. Olivar

  16. James Uhlig says:

    Great kob, I too am currently planning a multilevel HO\N layout. Love all the tips and how to from all at this site. Santa Fa all the way, grew up in Kansas, Topeka, have good ole ATSF in my blood.

  17. Steven Kanner says:

    Can you let me know the overall dimensions of the layout.

  18. Dan Hulitt says:

    Nice concept, Bob, and well executed. The PRE car on the front of the VIA consist is prototypical as fruit cars and milk cars were often added to the much faster passenger trains., and they usually were up front. Lots of fun there.

  19. Lester Wayne Larrew says:

    I love the ATSF. Worked as a fireman in 1952, then went to Army.

  20. William says:

    I have HO, HOn3 and will be doing HOn2 which is close to N gauge. I have a N gauge engine (steam) which with a bigger cab will fit right in.

  21. One thing I love about Al’s blog is to see all the different ways that people address their challenges. Bob’s layout presented today is one great example of that creativity at work. The idea of an HO gauge loop around an N gauge layout is a brilliant idea.
    Several have asked the size of Bob’s layout, to my eyes the HO scale loop looks to have used 22 inch radius. If that observation is correct, I believe that Bob’s layout is either 4 foot by 6 foot or 4 foot by 8 foot.
    Some people see challenges in life and they allow those challenges to stop them. Others face the same challenges and develop creative solutions.

  22. Willard Volquardsen says:

    I like the idea of combining HO and N scale on the same layout. I had planned to do that on my HO Christmas layout where an HO train would disappear into a tunnel at one level of a mountain and an identical N scale version of the same train would appear out of another tunnel at a higher level. I never could figure out how to properly synchronize the two trains and I’ve since given all my N scale trains to my brother. Now, perhaps, I might be able to do it with an Arduino program and hardware.

    Bob, you’ve done a great job of getting a lot of model railroad into a small space. I too am a big fan of Rocky Mountain railroading and hope someday to build a layout that represents a portion of the Los Angeles & Salt Lake division of the Union Pacific. But I’d also want to run some BNSF, SP and Rio Grande equipment on it too.

  23. Erick says:

    That kool, Keep up the good work.

  24. Ruben Simon says:

    I saw something I don’t remember noticing before: appropriate buildings on the backdrop! Great idea! It really changes the perspective of the entire layout. Would like to incorporate that … if I ever get started … ;-D

  25. Abra says:

    Thanks for sharing. Great job. You definitely have a skill for this.

  26. Brian Olson says:

    Some neat ideas here. While we retired to Georgia a few years back, my new layout is set in Wyoming where I started my career and met my wife. I have two main lines for UP, BNSF and Amtrak. A 4 track staging yard and several industries keeps me busy.

    So many neat ideas here every day. Thanks all!

  27. MICHAEL GLASS says:

    I love your pictures i also have a huge Amtrak collection, Mine is HO, I have a beautiful HO Amtrak Midwest Charger Locomotive.

  28. robert dale tiemann says:

    love the mountain scenery, nice job.

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