First in a series
Over the Columbus Day weekend, Ed and Ursula Ribinskas drove to Pennsylvania in search of steam.
The highlight of the trip would be seeing Reading Blue Mountain & Northern No. 425, a 4-6-2 Pacific-type steam locomotive build by Baldwin in January 1928.
The 425 departs from the R&N headquarters city of Port Clinton, Pennsylvania, and takes passengers on a two-hour trip to Jim Thorpe, where it lays over for three hours.
The locomotive was built in Pennsylvania for the Gulf, Mobile & Northern, later renamed Gulf, Mobile & Ohio.
Retired in 1950, No. 425 had a series of owners until it was purchased by Andrew J. Muller Jr., to pull excursion trains on the RBM&N.
Muller later painted the locomotive dark blue, in part because the Reading once had a dark blue steamer of its own.
The 425 was out of service between 1997 and 2008 during which time it underwent restoration. It also underwent repairs in 2011 and 2012.
Ed and Ursula chased the 425 on one of its trips, getting it at Zehners, Haucks, Atlas, Nesquehoning and the Pennsylvania Route 93 tunnel.
Photographs by Edward Ribinskas