May 11, 2018

2018 Railway Modelers Meet of British Columbia Wrap Up

We are back home after a week in British Columbia that included attending the 2018 Railway Modelers Meet of British Columbia. The meet was a lot of fun. We managed to add in some golf, gardens, hiking, and rail fanning around the meet. For a video summary of the whole week see this link.

Just one of the beautiful scenes on Mark Dance's layout
Mike Chandler and his gorgeous layout
 Our trip started with a ferry ride to Vancouver island where we stayed in beautiful Victoria. After a few days on Vancouver Island, we returned to Vancouver to operate on Mark Dance's N scale Columbia and Western layout. Due to a hiccup at the hotel, we arrived a bit late to the op session. Thus, I was assigned the task of switching the isolated branch in the mushroom portion of the layout. This branch is served by a car float, and I got to switch it. It was a lot of fun. Mark's layout is chock full of interesting ideas and beautiful scenes.

Afterwards we got to visit Gary Hinshaw's N Scale Tehachapi Loop layout and Mike Chandler's freelanced HO scale rocky mountain railroad. Mike's wiring is just a impressive as the structures and scenery on the layout. There were other layouts open for tours, but we had to skip them to get some rest.
(L to R) John Socia-Lehoia, me, Gary Hinshaw,
& Mark Danceat Gary's N Scale layout

Blog readers (L to R) Ken Rutherford, Greg Kennelly
& Rick Lord
More blog readers (L to R) Rene Gourley, Steve Starke,
Scott  Lamoureux, John Socia-Lahoia
For me, the meet kicked off Saturday morning by presenting my clinic "Down to the Sea in Trains" twice in quick succession. The clinics were well attended. I also got to meet several blog readers (see photos), which was a treat.

I also attended several excellent talks during the rest of the meet. Scott Lamoureux's talk on how he modeled the Cisco Bridge area of the Fraser River Canyon in N scale really impressed me. His small layout  was featured in the May 2017 issue of Model Railroader magazine, however the article focused on the bridge construction and didn't show off much of Scott's incredible scenery work. The layout is not only beautiful to look at, but it depicts the geological features with high fidelity. His layout deserves more coverage in the national hobby press.

On Sunday I presented the keynote talk on how I am using high-tech techniques to model the 19th century Aquia Line.  It was fun to discuss this topic with a group of mostly Canadian citizens. They had a lot of interesting questions.

Rene Gourley thanks me for presenting the keynote talk
There appeared to be a lot of interest in the Civil War. Steve Starke, an N scale modeler who now lives on Vancouver Island,  brought an N scale diorama to the meet. He also plans to add a civil war scene to his N scale layout.

The model room had a nice display of models, including Steve's diorama and a cool model of a rail ferry.

Steve Starke's N Scale ACW diorama


  1. Great modeling and operating community in the Vancouver area!

  2. Hi Bernie. It was a pleasure to meet you and I thoroughly enjoyed both your clinic and the after lunch presentation on your civil war layout. Glad you got to enjoy some of our sites and golf courses. One correction with the photo captions, Dick Lord should be Rick Lord.

  3. Bernie, from another blog reader and member of the RMMBC organizing committee, thanks for helping to make this year's Railway Modellers Meet one of the best yet. Your efforts are greatly appreciated. See you next year?

    1. If you hold it later in the year, when Whistler's golf course are open, I might be able to talk Alicia into it.

  4. Thanks for coming, Bernie!

  5. ...and the carefully thought through car moves you used at Rosebery to load the Slocan Lake barge for its return journey south will now forever be known as the "Bernie Shuffle" in your honour. Quid pro quo. ☺

    Thanks for coming Bernie. You - and your blog readers - are welcome at the RMMBC any time!

    1. It's unlikely anyone will adopt the "Bernie Shuffle" as to do so would require a complete and utter lack of understanding of the task at hand. As my college professors used to say, "it's intuitive to the most casual observer" - I guess not. Nonetheless, I am honored to be immortalized in such a manner.