ablemann is a free Model Railroad Discussion Forum and photo gallery. We cover all scales and sizes of model railroads. Whether you're a master model railroader or just getting started, you'll find something of interest here.

  1. The MadCow  "Guernsey 400"

    The MadCow "Guernsey 400"

    Although the power still waves the CNW flag, This is really the Twin-Cities to Chicago day train, operated by the MadCow. Note the UP inspired paint scheme on the first sleeper. This car is lettered for the CNW.
  2. Get 'em before they get new stencils!!

    Get 'em before they get new stencils!!

    A 'pure' CNW F7A leads a sister and a GP-9 westbound at Ablemann. These units are starting to get the MCOW re-stenciling.
  3. Miller Bros. Wild West Show

    Miller Bros. Wild West Show

    Ole' Joe Miller really knew how to go in style. This truss-rod equipped Observation car was the finest of it's day. The Miller Bros. Wild West Show travelled the U.S. putting on authentic "Cowboy and Indian" performances. The car is on it's way to the museum at Baraboo.
  4. Worth the trip...

    Worth the trip...

    Crawling down the rocks at Ablemann has it's advantages. I was amazed at the condition of these old coaches, having been built in the 1800's. Through the years, it took a ton of TLC to insure these cars made it to our generation.
  5. FRA waivers on board.

    FRA waivers on board.

    While these cars are still incredible shape, special FRA waivers were required to move them from one carrier to another. The cars will be stored in a special building in Baraboo.
  6. A rumor..........

    A rumor..........

    On a tip, I made my way to the high Bridge at Ablemann to see something I was told "one doesn't see everyday". Imagine my surprise when a couple of MadCow geeps rolled onto the bridge with WOODEN parlor cars!!!
  7. Heavyweight Observations head to museum.

    Heavyweight Observations head to museum.

    While most of the retired Strates' cars are coaches, These two heavyweight observations made a beautiful sight! The cars were in storage in Florida and were donated to the Baraboo museum when the owner of them passed.
  8. 'New' Arrivals for Baraboo!!

    'New' Arrivals for Baraboo!!

    Still wearing the old CNW freight scheme, F7A 4083 leads a train of retired James E. Strates carnival cars over the Ablemann high bridge.
  9. MadCow Employee Special

    MadCow Employee Special

    Employess of the Madison Central of Wisconsin Ry. enjoy a Saturday excursion over the newly acquired Reedsburg sub. Managment runs the special train seen here at the Ablemann High Bridge.
  10. Going to be a busy day....

    Going to be a busy day....

    Ex-CNW 1203 gets into position for spotting the empties arriving from the west. The GP-30 & GP-9 are now owned by the Madison Central of Wisconsin, a private entity.
  11. Now for the details

    Now for the details

    Bluffs are painted. Track is painted and ballasted. All it needs now is vegetation and details.
  12. Light Black Wash

    Light Black Wash

    A light black wash has been applied to carvings.
  13. Starting to carve the Ablemann Bluff

    Starting to carve the Ablemann Bluff

    Carving begins for the quarry diorama at Ablemann.
  14. Under new ownership....

    Under new ownership....

    New owner Madison Central of Wisconsin is under control of the Ex-CNW Madison Division. Five brothers from Baraboo Wisconsin have purchased the line and a large assortment of equipment. Here a MadCow SD50 and SD40T-2 arrive at Ablemann with an empty rock train for loading.
  15. Under a new 'flag'

    Under a new 'flag'

    Ex-CNW GP35 and F7A units are hard at work on the new Madison Central of Wisconsin or "MadCow Route". As part of the purchase agreement, MCoW agreed to provide trackage rights to the Ablemann Quarry for three years. Thus providing the CNW with the famous "pink lady" ballast.
  16. Must be a power shortage...............

    Must be a power shortage...............

    A CNW GP-30 and an NW pull bad orders from the quarry at Ablemann. A sure sign that we'll see the commuter F's in freight service soon!!

Affiliate Disclosure: We may receive a commision from some of the links and ads shown on this website (Learn More Here) is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to - An online railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used railroad books. Railroad pictorials, railroad history, steam locomotives, passenger trains, modern railroading. Hundreds of titles available, most at discount prices! We also have a video and children's book section. - An online model railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used books. Layout design, track plans, scenery and structure building, wiring, DCC, Tinplate, Toy Trains, Price Guides and more.