Length: 2 Hours 46 minutes
Time Period: 1972- 1973
Locations: Rocky Mountain subdivision
Sources: Ed Stimpson, Don Hunter
The Milwaukee Road is featured as it was, operating on the Rocky Mountain Division. The early 1970’s is the era shown. Electrified Milwaukee Road action is presented, as it was running into the 1970’s. Specialized locomotives, that include the Little Joes. Plenty of diesel action, and other electric locomotives. Pentrex had this out on VHS years ago. This version packs all of those tapes onto a single DVD. The higher quality of the digital format , looks superior to the VHS tapes. Pentrex Combo DVD’s offer much, on a single disc.
Digital processing has the old films in best possible viewing quality. Soundtrack was made from actual recordings of Milwaukee’s various locomotives in this region. This release has some nice extras. A chapter menu, and on/ off narration. Some previews after the conclusion. The DVD navigation works off a main menu. Each show has it’s own menu. All the shows play the previews at conclusion. One must return to the main menu to play another volume.
Volume 1: Electric Power: Alberton, Avery and St. Paul Pass- 1972 (47 minutes)
Electric locomotives are covered in a high level of detail. Very scenic locations. St. Paul Pass and the high trestles are filled with freight trains. In depth illustration and history of the Little Joe fleet. Plenty of to view these famed engines at work. Older boxcabs are equally reviewed.
Volume 2 : Harlowton to Butte, Montana- 1973 (41 Minutes)
There is a wide array of trains and information in this volume. Lombard is a hotspot, it receives more coverage in the third volume. Combining the nice pace sequences, with the chases is an effective way to see the railroad. Cab rides are the icing on the cake.
Burlington Northern runs underneath the Milwaukee at Lombard.
Volume 3: The Rocky Mountain Division– 1973 (78 minutes)
Rocky Mountain Division was from Harlowton to Avery Montana. Volune three has the sound levels higher for the trains. All the shows have that balance of narration, and railroad sounds. More emphasis on diesel locomotives in Volume 3. Plenty of electrified too!
This volume has loads of scenic train action. More distant shots, that emphasize the terrain. Zoom lens is useful, and not overdone. This show is the longest of the trilogy.
Epilogue contains remnants of the line, as filmed by Ed Stimpson in 1995.
Another excellent program within the series!
Overview of the 3 Volumes.
Pentrex has a captivating 3 volumes of Milwaukee Road action in the Bitteroot Mountains. Thourough research offers a high level of interesting narration. The best train shows have that combination of fine cinematography and backgound/ historical information. It is always enjoyable, to not just see classic trains, but learn about the railroad at the same time.
Film quality is excellent overall. Some scenes are a little dark, mostly due to towering mountains or shot late in the day. It all works out, as the vast majority of the footage looks great. Digital processing and the DVD format have this show appearing much sharper than the old VHS version. It is definitely worth the upgrade. Storage is easy, only one disc.
Milwaukee Road fans will find enjoyable repeat viewings of the three shows here. It is a mecca of classic early 1970’s Milwaukee,railroading in Montana. Any railfan should be happy with this fine release.
Rating: 5 Stars