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When you say the words "World's Biggest Steam Train," the mind automatically conjures up images of either a museum, or an old-timey black-and-white photograph taken back when the camera flash was likely to burn your handlebar moustache right off of your face!  At least, that what I thought before learning that the living piece of history that lays claim to that title is still roaring down the tracks - and it's headed straight for Shreveport!

According to the official release from Union Pacific, famed steam locomotive number 4014 will be roaring down the tracks, belching gigantic clouds of smoke and steam as it makes its way to our neck of the woods during the big 2021 Steam Route tour.  The trip will take this working piece of America's history through Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Illinois, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Texas before making its way back home in Wyoming.

This mammoth train engine is 85 feet and 7.5 inches long and more than 16 feet tall!  On the scale (if you can find one big enough) it weighs in at more than a million pounds!  Performance isn't too bad for an 81 year old train either - the last functional "Big Boy" still produces in excess of 7,000 horsepower!

This moving masterpiece of engineering was built way back in 1941, and it logged more than a million miles hauling passengers and revenue freight across this country before being retired in 1959.  It was a static display at the Rail Giants Train Museum in Pomona, California for nearly 6 decades until railroad giants Union Pacific acquired it in 2013.  What happened next was a labor of love performed be the true steam train fans at the Steam Shop in Cheyenne, Wyoming.  In 3 short years, old No. 4014 was fit for rail service once again!

2021 Steam Route - Via UP.com
2021 Steam Route - Via UP.com

Your chance to see this incredible locomotive and the cloud of steam that travels with it is coming up on Tuesday, August 24th at the Union Pacific Railroad Hollywood Yard located at 6215 E. Jewella Road in Shreveport.  You won't be able to climb aboard, but it will provide some excellent viewing for any train lover and some pretty unique backgrounds for your new profile photo!

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