Jun 112013
 

As previously mentioned, my husband and I became volunteer managers of an HO Scale train room, at our area’s Senior Recreation Center last year.

This room had been a four year work in progress by another train lover, so we are dealing with what was already built.  What we jokingly called our seven foot chocolate cake/blob, is the cover for a (circular track) helix that’s designed to bring the trains to the upper or lower level of tracks.

Model Train helix

To reflect how we would have wanted our town to look in the 1950’s, we added a Ski Lodge and Skiers on the mountain.
Model Train Ski area

Model Train Ski LodgeWhen people cleaned out their dusty, spider infested boxes, they donated the HO scale model items to the train room,

Luckily for me, all the spiders were dead and one of the great finds was this saloon.

We kit-bashed it into a ski chalet and painted winter Model Train Ski Hill 1clothes on the patrons.

Kit-bashing sounds destructive, but it is really a gentle method of creating what you need to fit a theme.

A fence was cut, shaped and painted to become ski racks.

Coal dust was used for the blacktopped road and the rock retaining wall was molded from plaster.

Model Train Ski Hill 2More trees were added and hot glued into place to finally stand up straight.

Our research on adding snow to the mountain was entertaining.  One suggestion was to add crystal sugar for the sparkle.  How cute would it be, to have ants snacking on our sugar mountain?

We haven’t been historically true to how our town looked in the 1950’s.  We’ve captured some interesting sites of Utah and compressed them into scenes of what we hope everyone will enjoy seeing in our train room .

Apr 222013
 

Paraglide 1Paragliding is one of the easiest ways to “share the air” with our feathered friends.  To soar with the eagles has been one of my on-going, bucket list wishes.

We arrived at sunrise on top of the Point of the Mountain launch area for a “Tandemonium Paragliding” lesson and enjoyed watching gliders sail off the cliff.

Paraglide 2

A non-motorized, foot-launched paraglider is designed with an inflatable wing to keep you aloft for extended flights and soaring, while riding with the currents in the air.

Paraglide 3We made lazy circles in the sky just like a large hawk, with me as his linked prey.  This is considered the simplest form of human flight and my tandem master made it seem effortless.

Using air currents and shifting our body weight from side to side, we searched for thermals that would lift and extend our flight.

Paraglide 4The landing area is smooth and noticeably clear of any rocks.  We  just lifted our feet and glided to a stop on a pad that’s built into the bottom of the paragliding apparatus.

If you are also an adrenalin junkie, go to the website: www.tandemoniumparagliding.com and sign up for a fun experience in Salt Lake City or a flight center closest to your area.

Mar 182013
 

Lee played with model trains when he was his grandson’s age.  It instilled a love for trains that he still has today.HAYDEN & GRANDPA

We purchased a home for retirement that fits our empty nester life style, which only allowed room for an N Scale size train set.  We found this 2’ by 3’ layout and a rolling table that fits perfectly in a corner of Lee’s office.

0107 copy
After learning about the techniques of remodeling a train layout, Lee changed the scenes to reflect our travels through the Moab, Utah area.  The new mountain has red rock spires with trees, rock climbers and campers, surrounded by city life in miniature.

BEACH SCENE copy

The beach scene has all its available camping sites filled with trailers and tents, boaters, picnickers and swimmers.  This is the kind of camping that we are looking for when we venture into the outdoors.

picnic table 1How small is an N Scale layout? One of the picnic tables that Lee assembled fits on a dime and he made them all without a magnifying glass.  Basically, N scale is half the size of the HO scale.  The HO scale is half the size of the O scale model trains.  All our grandsons begin their love of trains by playing with Thomas the Tank Engine, which is just the perfect scaled down size to fit their precious little hands.

GRANDPAThe youngest of our grandsons are now learning how to become expert train engineers.

Lee has been sharing his love of trains with all seven grandsons and may need to be careful as to how many train sets he promises to build with the grandboys.

 
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