From high atop the tallest stepstool I own, I took this aerial view snapshot of the Lost Continent Railway:

aerial view of the Lost Continent Rwy

My phone camera can also do panoramas. Nifty keen neato, right?

The latest addition to the LoCo is the benchwork along the backside of the layout. The eastern terminal, yet to be named (although it’s rumored that “Gertrude” is still holding tight to first place), will be erected near the upper right corner, with five tracks and attending passenger platforms running underneath it. The five tracks will combine in a kind of spaghetti-bowl tangle through a series of switches to be laid on the narrowing strip of plywood in the center of the photo, until they connect to the three tracks in the horseshoe curve to the left. Two more tracks where great big chuffing steam engines will wait for their cue to join with the passenger trains will branch off toward the control panel.

So far, this is all in my mind. Oh, wait, no it’s not. It’s all been carefully drawn out by John Armstrong, master track planner extraordinaire!

Even though there’s still a shocking amount of hammering and sawing to do, it’s starting to feel a lot like I’m nearing the home stretch. The track to the station will be the last of the mainline track to be laid on the Lost Continent. There are a couple of short line tracks that curl outward from the crossing in the center of the layout, but I won’t be fiddling around with them much until I get the mainline done. The major challenge of this layout has always been piecing together the switches that make up the approach to the station so that cars can move through them smoothly, and there will be a lot of switches. It’s not going to happen this month, or even next month, but it’s just possible that trains could be pulling into the station before the winter’s over.

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