You are here

Canadian Pacific Railway Kettle Valley Division


Superintendent Anthony Craig
Location South Western British Columbia
Interchange CNR Hope
Size L Shaped 37 ft x 27 ft 600 square feet
Scale HO
Era September 1949
Control DCC Lenz CVP radio Throttles
Clock Speed 6:1 GML Enterprises
Session Length 3.5 Hours
Crew Size 12
Dispatching TT&TO with a Dispatcher and 3 Agent Operators
Car Forwarding CC & WB
Communication Vintage Telephones
Jobs 7 Road crew; 4 Passenger Trains;1 Mixed; 9 Through Freights; 2 Wayfreights; Pushers
Accessibility Downstairs to the Basement
Website eventually
Prototype/Frelanced Scale High Prototypical
Length of Mainline 385 feet
Yards 1
Number of Passing Sidings 6
Scenery Complete 65%
Carspots 59
Motive Power Mikados, Consolidations, TenWheelers, with Soundtraxx
Rolling Stock 120 freight cars; 19 Passenger Cars; Accurate for Era
Train Lengths 10 to 17 cars
Track Construction Handlayed Code 70 Turnouts #7
Session Atmosphere Serious Fun

Canadian Pacific Railway, Kettle Valley Division
The Kettle Valley Division of the Canadian Pacific Railway was an interesting and challenging mountain railroad that linked the small scattered communities of southern British Columbia for most of the 20th century, with final abandonment occurring in 1989. It directly connected with the line that is modeled by Mark Dance and Scott Calvert to form BC’s “Southern Mainline” stretching from Vancouver to Medicine Hat, Alberta. A remnant of the line still operates as a tourist excursion out of Summerland BC, featuring a nicely restored steam locomotive typical of Kettle Valley motive power.
The HO version of the Kettle Valley is very faithful to the prototype in its topography, infrastructure, trains and operational features as they were in 1949, when steam still was king. The 385 foot mainline is stretched out over two decks with a helix in the middle and staging tracks at each end. Most of the scenery and trackage closely resemble specific scenes on the Westside of the Kettle Valley Division, from Princeton to Hope, a distance of 100 miles.
The small Division point of Brookmere is 75% of full scale and is the centre of activity. Freight trains terminate and originate here and road crews do their own terminal switching. Passenger trains run through. Pusher service is run on the Coquihalla Sub. Princeton town can keep a way-freight crew very busy.
There is substantial scenery completed and most structures are scratch-built. Rolling stock and motive power is detailed and accurate for the period. Resource industries were the lifeblood of the KV: logs, lumber, coal, copper concentrate, agriculture; and this is reflected in the consists of the freight trains.
Besides modeling from the prototype, this layout has been built with realistic operations in mind based on information obtained from veteran Kettle Valley railroaders and CPR documents. Paperwork is based closely on the prototype: Timetables, Train Order forms, dispatcher’s Train Sheets & Record Book. Dispatchers and Agent/Operators are well trained in the art of Train Order transmission by a retired CPR dispatcher. Orders are fairly routine and straight-forward.
The layout was featured in the November, 2003 issue of Rail Model Journal but there has been much progress since the article appeared 10 years ago, including a major extension of the layout into an adjoining room.
Here is a link to the RMJ online article featured on the cover and pages 29 to 39:
Here is a link to a short video taken on a fan trip in 1957 by the late Dave Wilkie showing the prototype railway we have attempted to model: