I just love Christmas vacation! What a great time to work on the layout. The new staging yard was complete for an entire 6 days when I decided to change the track plan and get rid of the helix. So on December 30th the staging tracks came up, I recycled the plywood and instead built a continuous grade from the lower level to the upper level. New Years Day was spent cutting and installing new roadbed and risers. The grade is the same as the helix, about 2.5%.
The biggest change however is the entire layout concept. I had planned on continuing the old layout concept by freelancing, something dictated by the lack of space in my old basement. However, since I've acquired more real estate I have the chance to model something I've always wanted to model, Chama to Cumbres Pass on the D&RGW in the 1940's. The lower level yard will be Chama, NM, Cumbres Pass will be on the upper level. Staging for both north and southbound trains will be in a storage room. The length of run is 310 feet.
Here are a few shots of the weeks progress.