Last week we saw Santa Fe Engineer B. F. Hale at the throttle of his locomotive as they were accelerating, having just left Kiowa, Kansas. The train then traveled through Oklahoma, a part of Texas, and has now progressed into New Mexico. We’re in Ricardo, somewhere between Clovis and Vaughn (the only sign of Ricardo I could find on the map was a cemetery by that name, located about midway between these points).
Jack Delano has swung around to capture Fireman C.P. Fryer at the firing stand of the locomotive. He’s charged with maintaining the proper fire in this oil burning steamer, as well as keeping the boiler full of water. He’ll keep his eye on the steam pressure gauge and on the stack, making sure he’s minimizing the smoke.
Since it’s March of 1943, the temperature shouldn’t be too bad as the train travels through this desert territory on its way to the west coast.