This page has been long overdue, but its finally here!! Siddharth Joshi and I made a trip to Mhow towards the end of January 1998. It was a delightful experence and one that will last in our minds forever! Between the two of us, we shot about 8 rolls of film over 2-3 days! We were lucky to have gone their at the time, as Mhow shed had especially turned out a YP to run a Republic Day special, which we were fortunate enough to footplate on for half the run from Mhow to Ratlam! The weather was cold as hell and winter was the perfect setting for our photography.....there was despair as well when we found out that one of our black and white rolls hadnt wound even once!!!
Mhow steam shed was shut down in March 1998 and these photographs will serve as memories for the years to come.....

Black and Whites at Mhow

YP in yard

'Early Morning at Mhow'
6:15 am in the morning at Mhow coaling yard....YP 2150 has been parked in the coaling line outside the shed and waits for the coaling crew to start their work. This loco had worked the early morning passenger into Mhow and will be assigned shunting duties for the rest of the day!
2150 was one of the few locos at Mhow without smoke deflectors!

'Krauss Maffei Works, Germany!!'
.....well, almost!
The stone walls and the war torn look almost give it away!
In reality, the location is the heavy repair bay of Mhow steam shed. Picture shows YG 2028 on the left and YP 2825 on the right, the latter being the earmarked Republic Day special loco!
Locos in Shed
Loco Shed
'Mhow in full steam!'
Mhow shed, literally in full steam.....a total of 4 powers can be seen in this picture!! Loco on the extreme left of the image is YG 3724, station pilot at Mhow...loco in the middle is YG 3334, banking duty for the ghats...locos to the right of the picture...YG 2028 and YP 2825, awaiting attention at the shed!
Patalpani-Kalakund Ghat delight!!
Tunnel Aboard the 11:OO am light working to Kalakund.....definetely the most exciting trip on a steam loco for Sidd and me!! We rode on the tender of the YG as it steamed up the ghats and then banked back the 73 UP Khandwa-Ajmer Passenger to Mhow!! The locos operate tender first as they descend the ghats from Patalpani to Kalakund, a distance of some 12 kms. At Kalakund, they water the loco and wait for the diesel hauled train to come in from the south. The loco then reverses up and is attatched to the back of the train and begins banking it up the 1 in 40 incline to Patalpani! This picture was taken from the tender of the YG as we approached a tunnel on our way to Kalakund!
A view of the waterfalls enroute from Patalpani to Kalakund!! The scenery was breathtaking all through as we ascended the ghats. The section from Patalpani to Kalakund has a ruling gradient of 1 in 40 and has 4 tunnels and 4 viaduct bridges between it!! Waterfalls
Loco emerging from tunnel YG 3334 emerges from Tunnel No.1 on its ascent to Kalakund. This picture was taken from the tender by turning around as soon as we exited from the tunnel....tender first, remember? The top of the tunnel mouth is stained with black soot from the steam engines that frequent this line!! Just as a matter of coincidence, till March 98, Kalakund was the southern most part of the coutry where one could see steam in action...excluding the Ooty line of course!
Day at Mhow..
YP 2150 poses for Siddharth's camera at the coaling yard in Mhow! The time is 6:00 am in the morning and the temperature about 5 deg Celcius!! This is the same YP featured in the first Black & White shot, which was waiting to be coaled! There was no crew on the engine, nor any staff near by...almost as if it were there only for us!!! Photography at Mhow
YDM4 + YP Signs of the times.......diesel takes over Mhow!! A Sabarmati YDM4, No.6235 shunts the 'live' YP to its coaling siding!! This move baffled both of us completely....although I must admit it was a joy to watch the two locos together shunting up and down! The YDM4 had worked in a cement frieght that very morning and had a ly-over of a few hours at Mhow. Due to the absence of the regular Mhow shunting power this YDM4 was put into use to perform manouveres at the shed! The YP was without any crew and that could be a possible reason for employing another loco to place it on the coaling line!!
YP 2150 in full steam!! A shot that needed a powerful zoom to catch all the action! The sun had come out in full strength and provided ideal conditions for shooting! This YP was backing up to move onto the turntable line. This shot was taken at the approach to Mhow shed and the signal cabin can be seen in the distance! YP in distance
On the turntable The same YP in the picture above gets on to the turntable and is being turned around. The army cantonment at Mhow runs parallel to the steam shed and apart from the railway township is probably the only other activity in Mhow!!' MHOW' stands for Military Headquarters of War'
Double headed steam in action at Mhow......YP 2825 is pulled out by YG 3724. The YP, to the left of the picture is the same YP that was earmarked for the Republic day run and as can be seen in the picture, is being done up while bieng shunted!!! One man on the tender and another on the footplate near the cab!! YP's Double Headed
Shed View A view of the shed as evening sets in on Mhow! To the right of the picture the Accident Relief Train or ART can be seen. Mhow steam shed, built more then 100 years ago, at one time had the distinction of bieng WR's largest Metre Gauge shed and homed a fleet of almost 60 locomotives in its heyday! When we went there it was left with a mere 12 odd working locomotives......only 5 being on line at any one time....the rest under repair!
Ratlam yard
Siddharth poses with camera and YP 2825 at Ratlam outstation shed!! The YP had just finished running the Special Republic day train to Ratlam! The train was actually a Mhow-Chittaurgarh passenger and the YP handed it over to a YDM4 at Ratlam. The same YP would return to Mhow with the Up Chittaurgarh-Mhow passenger later in the day! It was currently getting watered and coaled at the outstation facility at Ratlam. Sidd on 2825
2805 at RTM YP 2805 reverses along the coaling line at Ratlam. To the right of the picture the erstwhile BG steam shed can be seen which nowadays houses the modern 140 tonne BG ART! Ratlam BG steam shed shut down in the eighties and was one of the largest steam sheds on the BG on WR. 2805 had failed short of Ratlam on the morning up working from Chittaurgarh and was relieved at Ratlam by a YDM4!
YP 2805 moves gently along the shed line at Ratlam as it drops burnt coal and cinders on the tracks. A stunning site in added so much charm to the place, I just went crazy clicking away!! The dropping of coal is reffered to as 'grating' and is done on long haults or ly-overs. YP dropping coal
Head on shot Head on shot of YG 3361 at Ratlam shed. YG 3361 was our first spotting at Ratlam and in fact the first steam power we encountered on our trip! Between the 2 of us, we shot about 20-25 shots of this locomotive.....we just went totally overboard seeing steam in action!!
Republic Day Special
As the night draws closer, preperations are on in full swing at Mhow shed to prepare YP 2825 for its special Republic Day Run the following morning! The scheduled train was to leave at 4:50 am in the morning and get into Ratlam at around 9:00 am. The train however pulled in 20 minutes late, due to 3 chain pullings on the way!! Preperation for RDS
Early Morning - 1 YP 2825 basks in the early morning sun at a wayside station enroute to Ratlam! Note the two speakers on each side of the smoke deflectors and the Indian tricolour! The speakers blared out patriotic numbers along the way and each station was decorated with Indian flags!!
A close up of the front of the YP, showing the intricate art work and decorations on it! The placard on the loco says, Yatri Seva' or 'Public/passenger Service' The Govt. of India emlem is on both sides of the loco. The Mhow shed markings were displayed in big on the smoke deflectors! Close up of front
Side in Fog A glint of sunlight on the tender, water sprayed from the injector, the smell and hissing of steam and a mixture of white smoke and the early morning fog.......pure bliss for any photographer or railway enthusiast!! Picture is taken from the side of the tender and the people up ahead near the locomotive are engulfed in fog and steam!!
YP 2825 makes a stunning picture as it pauses early in the morning at a wayside station. The loco was watered here and shed staff which accompanied the loco tended to the beauty!! Early morning - 2


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