Transcript: Episode 2 - Reaching New Heights | Nov 25, 2020

Aerial views show images of different mountain ranges.

The narrator says FROM THE WORLD'S
MOST MAGNIFICENT MOUNTAINS...

A woman stands on a cliff and says THERE'S A MORE THAN 400 FOOT
DROP AND THERE'S NO ESCAPING IT.

The narrator says TO ITS WILDEST WATERS...
A man stands on the tracks of a railway up in a mountain and says JUST HAVE A LOOK AROUND.
SO MANY CHALLENGES.

The narrator says RAILWAYS HAVE SET OUT TO
CONQUER THEM ALL.

A construction worker says TO DO 2,500 BLASTS UNDER
GRAND CENTRAL REQUIRED A LOT OF
COORDINATION TO MAKE SURE THAT
WE DIDN'T DISTURB ANYTHING ABOVE
US.

The narrator says DRIVEN BY THE BOLDEST
ENGINEERS, FOR WHOM NO
OBSTACLE IS TOO GREAT.

A bearded man stands on a railway going into a land strip across the ocean says THIS HAS GOTTA BE ONE OF
THE MOST HARD-FOUGHT PIECES OF
RAILWAY ENGINEERING ON THE
PLANET.
THIS IS MAGNIFICENT!
I LOVE IT.

The narrator says IN THIS EPISODE: REACHING NEW HEIGHTS.
THE INCREDIBLE INCLINES FACING
MOUNTAIN RAILWAYS.

Kerstin is in her thirties, with short straight brown hair and wears a black T-shirt, a denim jacket, and sunglasses over her head.

Kerstin says THIS HAS
NARROW CURVES AND THIS, IN
COMBINATION WITH THE GRADIENTS,
IT'S VERY DIFFICULT TO BUILD IT.

The narrator says AND THE REMARKABLE
SOLUTIONS.

Bruno is in his fifties, with short receding gray hair and a beard. He wears a black and white gingham shirt, a black cardigan and a red jacket.

He says THEY TOLD ME, "BRUNO, YOU'RE
CRAZY.
THAT'S IMPOSSIBLE."

A man with glasses says NOW WE ARE AT THE STEEP
GRADIENT AND THE ENGINE COULDN'T
HOLD ON BY PURE ADHESION.

The narrator says THAT MAKE THE IMPOSSIBLE
POSSIBLE!

The name of the show appears against black and white drawings of vintage and modern trains. It reads "Impossible railways."

The narrator says AS THEY MAKE THEIR EPIC
JOURNEYS ACROSS THE CONTINENTS,
RAILWAYS CONTINUE TO PUSH
BOUNDARIES EVER FURTHER.
INSPIRING ENGINEERS TO FIND NEW
WAYS TO TACKLE ALL OF NATURE'S
EXTREMES.
BUT THERE IS ONE CHALLENGE THAT
RAISES THE BAR HIGHER THAN ANY
OTHER.

An aerial views show images of snowed peaks.

The narrator says THE MIGHTY PEAKS AND SHEER
CLIFFS OF MOUNTAINS.
FROM THEIR TREACHEROUS WINDING
TERRAIN.

Klaus is in his forties, bold and with a beard, and wears glasses, a blue shirt, a blue tie, and a black hooded jacket.

He says SEMMERING
FEATURES GRADES AND CURVES THAT
HAS NEVER CONQUERED BEFORE BY
RAILROAD.

The narrator says TO IMPOSSIBLE INCLINES FOR
TRAINS.

A man in an orange vest says THE STEEPER YOU MAKE IT, THE
BIGGER THE TRAIN YOU NEED IN
ORDER TO OVERCOME THIS INCLINE.

The narrator says AND PASSAGES TO OVERCOME.

Bruno says THE CHALLENGE HERE IS BECAUSE
THE NATURAL WALL IS MORE OR LESS
VERTICAL, SO WE HAVE TO FIND A
WAY.

The narrator says IT WAS THE CHALLENGE OF ONE
EPIC CLIMB THAT FACED SWISS
ENGINEERS IN THE MID-1800S.
INCLINES ARE OFTEN A TEST FOR
TRAINS.
(TRAIN STRAINING)

An animation shows a train struggling to go up a steep mountain.

The narrator says BUT THE STRUGGLE TO OVERCOME
THEM IS ALWAYS WORTH IT.
THE TROUBLE IS, WHEN THEY DO
MAKE IT TO THE TOP... OF COURSE WHAT GOES UP STILL
HAS TO COME BACK DOWN.

In the animation, the passengers go off the train as it comes down and say UH-OH.

(music plays)

The narrator says THE SWISS ALPS- PART OF THE
LARGEST MOUNTAIN RANGE IN
EUROPE, AND HOME TO SOME OF ITS
HIGHEST PEAKS.
FOR CENTURIES, THE ALPINE
VISTAS HAVE BEEN ATTRACTING
TOURISTS WITH A SENSE OF
ADVENTURE.
BUT WITH THEIR UNRELENTINGLY
STEEP TERRAIN, THESE MIGHTY
MOUNTAINS ARE A RAILWAY'S MOST
FORMIDABLE OPPONENT.
RAILWAY TECHNICIAN STEFFEN
REICHEL IS TRAVELLING ON THE
RIGI RAILWAY, TO SEE HOW
ADAPTATIONS TO THE TRACK AND
THE ENGINE MADE IT ONE OF THE
FIRST RAILWAYS TO TAKE ON A
SEEMINGLY IMPOSSIBLE MOUNTAIN
CLIMB.
(WHISTLE BLOWING)

Steffen is in his mid-forties, with short gray hair and wears glasses, black trousers, a black sweater and a blue jacket.

He rides an old train and says LOOK AT THAT SUNSHINE!
LOOK AT THE RIGI MOUNTAINS.
I LOVE IT.
AND NOW YOU CAN HEAR THE ENGINE
START WORKING HARD BECAUSE IT'S
VERY STEEP ON RIGI.
AND NOW LISTEN TO THAT NOISE,
THE FIREMAN IS DOING HIS WORK.
HE NEEDS TO SHOVEL 500 KILOGRAMS
OF COAL INTO THE BOILER UP TO
RIGI STAFFL.

The narrator says TODAY, THIS TRAIN IS ONE OF
THE MOST POPULAR TOURIST TRAINS
IN SWITZERLAND.
BUT IN THE EARLY 1800S,
THE ONLY WAY TO REACH THE
VERTIGINOUS HEIGHTS OF MOUNT
RIGI WAS ON FOOT OR BY
CARRIAGE.
IN 1869, ENGINEER AND
LOCOMOTIVE BUILDER NIKLAUS
RIGGENBACH WAS COMMISSIONED TO
CONNECT VITZNAU ON THE SHORES
OF LAKE LUCERNE WITH THE
SUMMIT OF MOUNT RIGI,
1,798 METRES ABOVE SEA LEVEL.

Steffen says AND WHAT RIGGENBACH REALLY
FOUND WAS JUST WORKING UP HERE
WAS HARD.

The narrator says HAVING SEEN TRAINS SLIPPING
AND LOSING TRACTION ON OTHER
RAILWAYS WITH SHALLOWER
GRADIENTS, RIGGENBACH KNEW HIS
SOLUTION WOULD REQUIRE RADICAL
RETHINKING.
THE RAILWAY WOULD HAVE TO CLIMB
1,115 METRES IN JUST FIVE
KILOMETRES.

Steffen says NOW WE ARE AT THE STEEP
GRADIENT AND THE BOILER IS NOW
LEVEL AND THE ENGINE COULDN'T
HOLD ON BY PURE ADHESION,
SO IT HAS TO GRAB TO SOMETHING.
LIKE CHILDREN WHO SLIDE DOWN THE
SLIDE, THE ENGINE WOULD SLIDE
DOWN HERE BY PURE ADHESION.
SO CHILDREN GO BACK UP THE
SLIDE.
THEY GRAB ON TO SOMETHING, AND
RIGGENBACH DID THE SAME.
HE USED SOMETHING WHERE THE
ENGINE COULD HOLD ON, WHICH
COULD GRAB ON, SO HE INVENTED
THE THIRD RAIL BETWEEN THE
NORMAL RAILS.

The narrator says RIGGENBACH DESIGNED A
TOOTHED RACK RAIL, BETWEEN THE
RUNNING RAILS.
A COG WHEEL WAS ADDED TO THE
CENTRE OF THE WHEEL AXEL TO
MESH WITH THIS RACK RAIL AND
GIVE THE TRAIN TRACTION.

An animation shows how the system works.

Steffen says AND THIS IS HOW THE COG
WHEELS INSIDE MERGE INTO THE
THIRD RAIL OF THE RACK SYSTEM
AND THIS IS HOW ENGINE GETS
HOLD.

The narrator says IN 1871, THE RIGI RAILWAY WAS
THE FIRST RACK AND PINION
RAILWAY IN EUROPE TO CONQUER A
MOUNTAIN.

Steffen says AND NOW LISTEN TO THAT
NOISE.
THIS IS WHY YOU SIT DIRECTLY
BEHIND THE ENGINE, BECAUSE YOU
HAVE TO ENJOY A WORKING ENGINE
AND YOU CAN FEEL THE ENGINE
MOVING BY THAT RATTLING, BY NOW
SPEEDING UP.
THIS IS ONLY ABOUT SIX MILES
PER HOUR BUT IT SOUNDS LIKE...
(ENGINE WHISTLING)

Steffen says BUT IT SOUNDS LIKE WE'RE GOING
100 MILES AND IT'S REALLY JUST
GOING UP.
IT'S LIKE RIGGENBACH BUILT A
STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN!

The narrator says TAKING NEARLY TWO YEARS TO
COMPLETE, RIGGENBACH HAD
FINALLY BROUGHT THIS MOUNTAIN
TO THE MASSES.
AND TODAY, AS MANY AS 500,000
PEOPLE A YEAR MAKE THE JOURNEY
TO THE SUMMIT.

At the summit, Steffen looks at the view and says UP HERE, THIS IS ONE OF THE
BEST VIEWS I EVER HAVE SEEN IN
MY WHOLE LIFE.
I HAVE BEEN TO MANY MOUNTAINTOPS
BUT NONE OF THEM HAVE THAT
PANORAMA AS RIGI.
NOW I KNOW WHY RIGGENBACH
CONQUERED THE MOUNTAIN WITH THAT
TYPE OF RAILROAD, BUT UP HERE
IT'S ONLY HALF OF THE PROBLEM.

The narrator says HAVING MANAGED TO GET THE
TOURISTS TO THE TOP OF THE
MOUNTAIN, THE ELEVATED INCLINE
PRESENTED RIGGENBACH WITH A
CHALLENGE OF EQUALLY TOUGH
PROPORTIONS.
WITH A 25 percent GRADIENT, THE RATE
OF DESCENT WAS CREATING TOO
MUCH STRESS ON THE BOILER AND
BAND BRAKES OF HIS LOCOMOTIVE,
AS WELL AS DAMAGING THE TRACK.

Steffen says USUALLY ON AN INCLINE, THE
MOST RAILWAYS ENCOUNTERED A VERY
PROBLEM, BECAUSE THE WEAR ON THE
BRAKES WAS SO HIGH THAT THE
BRAKES COULD FAIL AND SO YOU
ROLL DOWN WITHOUT ANY BRAKES AND
COULD DERAIL, AND MANY ACCIDENTS
HAPPEN.

The narrator says FOR A TRAIN FULL OF
PASSENGERS, THIS COULD HAVE
BEEN CATASTROPHIC.
RIGGENBACH NEEDED TO FIND A
WAY TO SLOW THE TRAIN DOWN.

Steffen says RIGI WAS TOO STEEP FOR
NORMAL BRAKING SYSTEMS AND SO HE
DECIDED TO USE A DIFFERENT BRAKE
SYSTEM.
A BRAKE SYSTEM WHICH COULD NOT
FALL APART.

The narrator says RIGGENBACH SURMISED THAT IF
THE ENGINE WAS STRONG ENOUGH TO
PUSH THE LOCOMOTIVE AND
CARRIAGES UP THE MOUNTAIN, THEN
IT SHOULD BE STRONG ENOUGH TO
SLOW IT DOWN ON ITS DESCENT.

Steffen says AND NOW WE GO DOWN BY
RIGGENBACH, THIS IS WHAT
RIGGENBACH REALLY INVENTED,
WAS THE BRAKE SYSTEM.
WHAT WE HEAR RIGHT NOW IS AIR IS
MOVING INTO THE CYLINDERS AND
IT'S PRESSED OUT BY THE SILENCER
NEXT TO THE STACK.
(TRAIN CHUGGING)
DID YOU HEAR IT?
THE CHUGGING NOISE HAS CHANGED
AND IT'S NOW A NOISE OF
COMPRESSED AIR.

An animation shows how the mechanism of the engine works.

The narrator says WHEN THE ENGINE IS RUNNING,
THE RIGGENBACH AIR VALVE IS
SWITCHED SO THAT EXHAUST WILL
LEAVE BY THE BLAST PIPE.
TO APPLY THE BRAKE, THE
THROTTLE VALVE IS CLOSED AND
THE RIGGENBACH AIR VALVE IS
SWITCHED IN THE OPPOSITE
DIRECTION.
ALLOWING THE PISTONS TO PULL
CLEAN AIR IN.
THE AIR BECOMES COMPRESSED IN
THE CYLINDER, ACTING LIKE A
CUSHION AND SLOWING THE PISTONS
DOWN, WHICH IN TURN SLOWS THE
TRAIN.

Steffen says PERSONALLY I THINK THIS IS
THE BEST DYNAMIC BRAKING SYSTEM
FOR A STEAM LOCOMOTIVE YOU EVER
CAN HAVE, BECAUSE IT HAS NO
ADDITIONAL STRUCTURAL DETAILS
WHICH NEED TO BE SPECIAL.
YOU CAN BUILD IT IN ANY STEAM
LOCOMOTIVE OF ANY TYPE AND IT'S
AN ABSOLUTE VALUABLE BRAKE
SYSTEM BECAUSE IT APPLIES THE
BRAKE PRESSURE BY ITSELF.
AS FAST AS THE TRAIN GOES,
THAT'S HOW THE BRAKE IS ACTING.

The narrator says THE RIGI RAILWAY BECAME THE
HIGHEST STANDARD GAUGE RAILWAY
IN EUROPE.

Steffen says BEING HERE AT RIGI IS
SOMETHING VERY, VERY SPECIAL
BECAUSE IT'S THE OLDEST
OPERATING COG RAIL IN EUROPE.
IT'S AN ABSOLUTE AWESOME RIDE
UPWARDS...
AND THEN GOING DOWN WITH THE
RIGGENBACH BRAKES, SMOOTH, SOFT.
THAT'S THE INVENTION WE ARE
ALL FOR HERE.
THIS IS WHAT MAKES THE GENIUS OF
RIGGENBACH.

(music plays)

The narrator says TACKLING THE WORLD'S
MIGHTIEST RANGES POSES MANY
DIFFERENT PROBLEMS...

Alex says IT'S VERY DIFFICULT TO
IMAGINE A TRAIN GOING THROUGH
THESE MOUNTAINS, THROUGH THESE
VERTICAL WALLS.

Alex is in his thirties, bald and with a trimmed beard. He wears a blue shirt and a conductor's hat.

The narrator says --FOR THE ENGINEERS OF
IMPOSSIBLE RAILWAYS.

(music plays)

The narrator says THE GREAT MOUNTAIN
RAILWAYS.
CUTTING THEIR WAY THROUGH
TREACHEROUS TERRAIN... .TO COMPLETE THEIR INCREDIBLE
JOURNEYS.
BUT EVERY MOUNTAIN RANGE THROWS
UP UNIQUE CHALLENGES- SOME
SEEMINGLY IMPOSSIBLE TO
OVERCOME.

(WHISTLE TOOTING)

The narrator says GIVEN ENOUGH FIRE POWER, MOST
ORDINARY TRAINS CAN CLIMB A
HILL.
BUT NO MATTER HOW HARD YOU
TRY... EXTRA MUSCLE CAN ONLY
GET YOU SO FAR.

(music plays)

The narrator says ECUADOR.
FROM THE PACIFIC OCEAN,
TO THE MIGHTY ANDES,
IT'S A COUNTRY FULL OF LARGER
THAN LIFE LANDSCAPES...
THAT SEEMED UNCONQUERABLE IN
THE LATE 1800S.

Alex says THE ANDES MOUNTAINS IN
ECUADOR RAN NORTH-SOUTH FOR
ABOUT 600 KILOMETRES WITH PEAKS
OVER THE 5,000 METRES AND THEN
ACTUALLY GETTING DOWN TO ZERO
LEVEL.
IT WAS VERY IMPORTANT TO
CONNECT THE CAPITAL CITY QUITO
AND GUAYAQUIL, THE MAIN PORT
THAT WERE GEOGRAPHICALLY
SEPARATED.

The narrator says ALTHOUGH ONLY 268 KILOMETRES
APART AS THE CONDOR FLIES,
THESE TWO STRATEGICALLY
IMPORTANT CITIES WERE
SEPARATED BY RAGING RIVERS,
DENSE CLOUD FORESTS AND DEEP
RAVINES.
THE AMBITION WAS TO BUILD A
RAILWAY ACROSS THIS TERRAIN.
BUT AS TREN ECUADOR'S ALEX
ORTIZ KNOWS, ACHIEVING IT WOULD
BE NO MEAN FEAT.

Alex says GUAYAQUIL, IT'S IN THE
LOWLANDS AT SEA LEVEL AND QUITO,
IT'S OVER 2,800 METRES ABOVE SEA
LEVEL AND THEN GETTING TO
THE CENTRAL VALLEY.
SO THE ENGINEERS HAD THIS
INCREDIBLE TASK TO GO FROM THE
COAST THROUGH THE MOUNTAINS
THROUGH THIS STEEP VALLEY.
IT'S VERY DIFFICULT TO IMAGINE A
TRAIN GOING THROUGH THESE
MOUNTAINS, THROUGH THESE
VERTICAL WALLS.

The narrator says FOR CENTURIES, THE PERILOUS
JOURNEY BETWEEN THE TWO HAD
ONLY BEEN POSSIBLE BY MULE,
TAKING UP TO 12 DAYS TO
COMPLETE.
AT THE END OF THE NINETEENTH
CENTURY, THE COUNTRY'S
LEADERSHIP ENLISTED THE HELP OF
TWO AMERICAN BROTHERS, JON AND
ARCHER HARMAN, TO START WORK ON
THE TRANS ANDEAN RAILWAY.
BUT THERE WAS ONE SECTION THAT
WAS SEEMINGLY IMPOSSIBLE TO
OVERCOME.
THE DEVIL'S NOSE.
WITH ITS' NEAR PRECIPITOUS
DROPS AND IMPENETRABLY HARD
ROCK FACE, BUILDING A TRACK
THAT COULD CIRCUMVENT AND
ASCEND THIS SECTION WOULD POSE
ONE ALMIGHTY ENGINEERING
CHALLENGE.
BUT INSPIRATION LAY INCREDIBLY
IN THEIR SURROUNDINGS.

Alex says SO, THE TRAILS THAT THEY
ARE ALL AROUND OVER HERE,
THE ANCIENT TRAILS IN ZIG-ZAG,
LIKE A SWITCHBACK, LIKE
THE ONES I HAVE ON MY BACK.
THEY THOUGHT THIS COULD BE THE
GREAT SOLUTION.

The narrator says IN 1908, AFTER TEN ARDUOUS
YEARS OF CONSTRUCTION, USING A
WORKFORCE OF THOUSANDS, THE
FIRST MAJOR RAIL NETWORK OF THE
REPUBLIC OF ECUADOR WAS
COMPLETED, FINALLY CONNECTING
QUITO AND GUAYAQUIL BY RAIL.

Alex says THIS IS THE DEVIL'S NOSE,
A HISTORICAL RAILWAY, A FEAT
OF ENGINEERING.
I'VE SEEN IT MANY TIMES AND IT
STILL BLOWS MY MIND.
IT'S INCREDIBLE.

The narrator says MADE POSSIBLE ONLY BY A FEAT
OF ENGINEERING AT THIS MOST
IMPOSING SECTION OF THE LINE.
THIS IS ONE OF THE HIGHEST
ACTIVE NARROW GAUGE RAILWAYS
IN THE WORLD.
(HORN HONKING)
TOUR GUIDE SANTIAGO MAKES THIS
WORLD-FAMOUS JOURNEY ON THE
REGULAR BASIS.

Santiago is n his thirties, with short curly brown hair and a stubble. He wears glasses and a bright red puffer jacket.

He says I NEVER GET BORED OF SHARING
THIS ROUTE WITH THE WORLD.
IT'S PRETTY AMAZING, THE
LANDSCAPES.
IT'S AN AMAZING ROUTE.

The narrator says THE INGENIOUS SOLUTION
ENGINEERS TURNED TO WAS A
SWITCHBACK- A ZIG-ZAG SECTION
OF TRACK WITH REVERSING POINTS.
THIS ENABLES THE TRAIN TO
TRAVERSE THIS EXTREME GRADIENT
AND GAIN 100 METRES IN ALTITUDE
AS IT TRAVELS BETWEEN TWO
SWITCHBACKS.

Santiago says SO, RIGHT NOW WE ARE GOING
THROUGH THE FAMOUS DEVIL'S NOSE.
SO WE'RE GOING UP THROUGH THE
TRACK IN REVERSE, ONE KILOMETRE,
GAINING ABOUT 80-100 METRES IN
ALTITUDE.
BUT IT'S IMPORTANT TO MENTION
ABOUT THIS MANOEUVRE THAT'S
PRETTY AMAZING IS THAT THE
MECHANISM THAT ALLOWS US TO
EXCHANGE THE TRACKS ARE HAND
PULLED BY THE BRACEROS, THE
MEMBERS OF THE CREW.
RIGHT NOW THE BRACERO LEAVE THE
CAR, PULL THIS SWITCH, ALLOWING
US TO GO THROUGH IT IN REVERSE.

(HORN HONKING)

Santiago says AGAIN, WHEN WE REACH THE END OF
THE SWITCHBACK, THERE WE WILL
STOP FOR A FEW SECONDS, THE
BRACERO WILL LEAVE THE UNIT
AGAIN, PULL THE SWITCH, AND FROM
THERE WE GO STRAIGHT FORWARD.
LOOKING THROUGH THE WINDOW, YOU
GET LOST IN THE VIEW AND YOU
FEEL LIKE YOU'RE FLOATING IN THE
TRAIN THROUGH THE TRACK.

The narrator says THIS INSPIRED CONCEPT SOLVED
THE MOST TROUBLESOME SECTION OF
THE RAILWAY.
AND IN DOING SO, A JOURNEY THAT
ONCE TOOK 12 DAYS WAS REDUCED
TO JUST 14 HOURS.

Santiago says THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE
TRACK FOR ECUADOR WAS SOMETHING
VERY IMPORTANT.
THE CONNECTION WAS BETTER,
TRANSPORTATION OF GOODS, CARGO,
PASSENGERS.
SO THERE WAS A BETTER DYNAMIC
IN THE COMMUNICATION BETWEEN
THE TWO MAIN CITIES,
GUAYAQUIL AND QUITO.

The narrator says DESPITE FLOOD DAMAGE IN 1998
WHICH DESTROYED MUCH OF THE
LINE, THE DEVIL'S NOSE
SECTION NEVER CLOSED.

Alex says THE ENGINEERING BEHIND
THE DEVIL'S NOSE IS OUTSTANDING.
TO GET THROUGH THESE MOUNTAINS
WAS THOUGHT IMPOSSIBLE FOR SO
LONG.
DESPITE THE MASSIVE CHALLENGE OF
BUILDING THE DEVIL'S NOSE
SECTION, TODAY, OVER A CENTURY
OF BEING BUILT, IT'S ONE OF THE
MOST STABLE AREAS OF THIS LINE.
AND THAT'S THE TESTAMENT HOW
GREAT WAS THE SWITCHBACK
SOLUTION.
I THINK THIS IS PROBABLY THE
MOST INCREDIBLE RAILWAY IN THE
WORLD.

The narrator says FINDING A ROUTE THAT CAN
REDUCE THE GRADIENT IS ONE WAY
TO TACKLE A MOUNTAIN.
BUT SOME INCLINES ARE SO
EXTREME, THEIR ENGINEERING IS
FROM THE REALMS OF SCIENCE
FICTION.

(music plays)

The narrator says SOME RAILWAY TRACKS ARE MADE
FOR INCLINES.
BUT PEOPLE ALWAYS WANT TO GET
TO THE TOP FASTER.

In animation, a group of skiers try to reach the top of the slope on a slow train and say COME ON!

The narrator says THE OBVIOUS SOLUTION IS
BUILDING A LINE THAT'S STEEPER
STILL.
BUT THE STEEPER YOU GO, MEANS
YOUR TRAIN MIGHT GET THERE,
BUT YOUR PASSENGERS WON'T.

As it goes steeper, the skiers fall off the train and say HEY!

(music plays)

The narrator says WITH STEEP SIDED MOUNTAINS
AND ARCTIC WINTERS, AT 1,300
METRES, THE ALPINE VILLAGE OF
STOOS IN SWITZERLAND IS ABOUT
AS REMOTE AS IT GETS.
POPULAR WITH SKIERS, ITS TINY
POPULATION OF ABOUT 100
DRAMATICALLY SWELLS TO OVER
2,000 DURING PEAK SEASON.
FOR THE VILLAGE AND ITS
VISITORS, AN AGING FUNICULAR
WAS THEIR ONLY CONNECTION WITH
THE VALLEY BELOW.
BUT THIS VITAL PUBLIC SERVICE
WAS FAILING TO KEEP UP WITH
THE NEEDS OF THE PASSENGERS.
SENIOR ENGINEER BRUNO LIFART
WAS ALL TOO AWARE OF THE
INCREASING DEMANDS IT HAD TO
MEET.
IT HAD TO GO FASTER,
CARRY MORE PEOPLE,
AND BE EASILY ACCESSIBLE.

Bruno says HERE WE STAND ON THE OLD
STOOSBAHN.
THIS-- IN 1933 IT WAS REALLY
THE STEEPEST FUNICULAR IN
EUROPE, BUT THE TRACK IS GOING
AROUND THE MOUNTAIN THIS
120 DEGREES.
AND WE HAD TO FIND OUT A NEW
TRACK POSSIBILITY WITH A
STRAIGHT TRACK.
SO THEREFORE, AFTER 84 YEARS
IN USE, WE HAD TO REPLACE IT
AND WE HAD TO BUILD IT IN
PARALLEL TO THE OLD FUNICULAR.

The narrator says BUT TO FIND A NEW ROUTE
MEANT CONFRONTING GRUELLING
MOUNTAINOUS TERRAIN.

Bruno says THEY TOLD ME, "BRUNO,
YOU'RE CRAZY.
THAT'S IMPOSSIBLE."
BUT I WAS NOT HAPPY WITH THIS
ANSWER SO I CHALLENGED THEM AND
SAID, "HEY, AS LONG AS YOU DON'T
SAY IT'S A NO GO, WE WILL FIND A
SOLUTION" AND NOW YOU CAN SEE
THE SOLUTION IS BUILT.

A clip shows a funicular with barrel-shaped carriages climbing up a steep railway.

The narrator says STOOSBAHN, THE GREATEST
INCLINE EVER CONQUERED BY RAIL,
OPENED TO THE PUBLIC IN
DECEMBER 2017.

Bruno says WE HAVE DONE SOMETHING
NOBODY ELSE HAS DONE BEFORE.
SO IT'S REALLY A NEW AREA,
AND WE CREATED A NEW TYPE
OF FUNICULAR.

The narrator says ASCENDING A WHOPPING 2,500
FEET FROM THE BASE OF THE
MOUNTAIN, AT A JAW-DROPPING
ANGLE OF 48 DEGREES, THIS 21ST
CENTURY FUNICULAR IS TRULY
GROUND-BREAKING.
WITH SUCH PRECIPITOUS INCLINE,
KEEPING THE PASSENGERS UPRIGHT
ON THE JOURNEY WAS THE FIRST
CHALLENGE.
THE ANSWER WAS A CUTTING-EDGE
CARRIAGE.

Niklaus is in his fifties, bald on top and with slightly long wavy gray hair on the sides and back and a mustache. He wears jeans and a brown sweater.

He says ONE OF THE
MAIN GOALS OF THE NEW STOOSBAHN
WAS WE MAKE IT HORIZONTAL AT
BOTH STATIONS.

The narrator says MECHANICAL ENGINEER NIKLAUS
MOSER WAS PART OF THE DESIGN
TEAM.

Niklaus says THE DEMAND FOR EASY ACCESS
FOR THE PASSENGERS IS INCREASING
AND THEN WE HAVE SOME VERY STEEP
SECTIONS AND FLAT SECTIONS WHICH
REALLY REQUIRED A LEVELLING
SYSTEM AND THAT WAS ACHIEVED
WITH THE NEW SYSTEM.

The narrator says WHAT THE TEAM CAME UP WITH
WAS A CARRIAGE.
WITH A FIXED CHASSE AND
INDIVIDUAL CYLINDRICAL CARS
THAT ROTATE TO KEEP THE
PASSENGERS AND FREIGHT
HORIZONTAL AT SUCH A STEEP
ANGLE, IT WAS THE FIRST OF
ITS KIND IN THE WORLD.
HAVING TO FIT ESSENTIAL TESTING
AND MAINTENANCE OF THE
CARRIAGES AROUND A BUSY TIME
TABLE, NIKLAUS AND HIS TEAM
MAKE THE MOST OF THE 15-MINUTE
WINDOW WHEN THE TRAIN IS
IN THE STATION.

Niklaus says WE NOW ARE BELOW THE TRAIN
WHERE WE SEE BEST HOW THE
LEVELLING DEVICE HAS DONE DURING
THE RIDE.
AND THEN YOU SEE THESE TWO
CYLINDERS ON THE LEFT HAND SIDE
AND THE RIGHT HAND SIDE.
THEY ARE CONNECTED TO THE LOWER
PART OF THE ROUND SHAPED CABINS
AND ONCE THEY MOVE THIS WAY OR
THAT WAY, THAT MEANS THAT THE
CABINS ARE ROTATING AROUND.

The narrator says IN-BUILT INCLINOMETERS SENSE
THE ANGLE OF THE TRACK,
SIGNALLING THE HYDRAULIC
CYLINDER SYSTEM TO KICK IN AND
COMPENSATE FOR THE INCLINE
BY ROTATING THE CARRIAGES
ACCORDINGLY, ALWAYS KEEPING THE
FLOOR HORIZONTAL AND THE
PASSENGERS UPRIGHT.

An animation shows how the carriages rotate to stay upright as they go up the steep inclines.

Niklaus says YOU DON'T REALLY FEEL THAT
THE TRAIN IS CHANGING THE
GRADIENT AS YOU STAY ON THE
FLOOR.
YOU JUST...GLIDE UP TO THE TOP
STATION AND YOU DON'T FEEL IT.

The narrator says A ROUTINE TEST REVEALS JUST
HOW THE MECHANISM WORKS TO
OVERCOME THE 110 percent INCLINE.

Niklaus stands inside one of the carriages and says SO NOW WE ARE TESTING AGAIN
AND WE GO TO A FULL INCLINATION
OF THE-- OF THE TRAIN ON THE
TRACK WOULD HAVE, (UNCLEAR)
AS WE ARE NOW IN OUR CABINS.
I'M HOLDING ON STRONG HERE THAT
I DON'T FALL OVER.
WE ARE NOT YET THERE BUT WE ARE
GETTING THERE.
I HOPE MY MUSCLES ARE STRONG
ENOUGH TO HOLD ON TILL WE GET TO
THE VERY END.

As the carriage starts rotating, he WHOA!
THAT'S THE LIMIT.
(GRUNTING)

In a tilted position inside the carriage, he says "Ah! Now I have to make it out of here."

(CHUCKLING)

The narrator says BUT FOR THE RAILWAY ENGINEERS
OF THIS PIONEERING PROJECT,
TRAVELLING UP WASN'T THE ONLY
CHALLENGE.

Bruno says ONE OF THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES
WAS TO ENSURE THE SAFETY FOR
THE WORKERS.

The narrator says HOW TO BUILD UP REQUIRED A
UNIQUE SOLUTION.

(music plays)

The narrator says HIGH ALTITUDE
RAILWAYS.
TESTING THE LIMITS OF
ENGINEERING... .TO CONQUER NATURE'S MOST
DIFFICULT TERRAIN.
AND ONE AMBITIOUS TRAIN THAT
FACED A SERIES OF PROBLEMS
IS THE STOOSBAHN FUNICULAR.
TODAY, PROJECT LEADER BRUNO IS
HEADING BACK TO THE SITE OF
THE STOOSBAHN'S MOST DEMANDING
ENGINEERING ORDEAL-- BUILDING
THE TRACK.
EVEN NOW, THE FINAL STAGE OF
THIS JOURNEY IS NOT FOR THE
FAINT-HEARTED.

Bruno stands by a steep mountain wall and says THE CHALLENGE HERE IS BECAUSE
THE NATURAL WALL IS MORE OR LESS
VERTICAL, SO WE HAD TO FIND A
WAY AND SO THEREFORE WE CREATED
THIS TUNNEL WITH 48 DEGREES.

The narrator says THREE TUNNELS WOULD BE CUT
THROUGH SOLID MOUNTAIN.
STARTING WITH THE HIGHEST,
EXCAVATED USING THE SIMPLE
DRILL AND BLAST METHOD.
(EXPLOSIONS)

The narrator says BUT WITH A NEAR VERTICAL
GRADIENT, THE LOWER TWO TUNNELS
WOULD NEED A COMPLETELY NEW
APPROACH.

Bruno says SO THE STEEPEST AREA IS
RIGHT HERE AND THE NEXT 200
METRES DOWN.
THIS TUNNEL HERE IS 250 METRES
LONG AND 200 METRES OF THIS 250
ON 110 percent.

The narrator says THE TEAM USED THE RAISE-DRILL
TECHNIQUE WITH A SPECIALLY
DESIGNED DRILLING DEVICE.
A VERY SMALL PILOT HOLE IS
DRILLED USING A DIRECTIONAL
DRILLING TOOL.
ONCE IT EMERGES, THE DRILL IS
THEN REPLACED WITH A ROTATING
METAL CUTTING TOOL WHICH IS
DRAWN UPWARDS, CREATING A WIDER
CIRCULAR HOLE BIG ENOUGH FOR
THE EXPLOSIVES TO BE INSERTED
AND THE TUNNELS TO BE ENLARGED
TO THEIR FINAL SIZE.

An animation shows how the drill works.

Bruno says THAT SEEMS TO BE THE MOST
EFFICIENT METHOD TO CREATE
TUNNELS IN SUCH STEEPNESS.
DURING THE ENLARGEMENT, ALL THE
ROCKS WHICH CAME OUT WENT DOWN
BECAUSE IT'S SO STEEP.
THE TOTAL AMOUNT WAS AROUND
25,000 TONS OF MATERIAL,
WHICH WE HAD TO MOVE.

The narrator says HAVING MANAGED TO USE IT TO
THEIR ADVANTAGE WITH WASTE
DISPOSAL, GRAVITY STILL POSED
A SIGNIFICANT RISK FOR THE
CONSTRUCTION TEAM HARNESSED TO
THE MOUNTAINSIDE.

Bruno says ONE OF THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES
WAS REALLY HERE TO ENSURE THE
SAFETY FOR THE WORKERS, BECAUSE
IT'S SO STEEP.
WHEN YOU LOSE, FOR EXAMPLE,
A TOOL, AND SOMEBODY ELSE STANDS
10 METRES BELOW, THIS TOOL WILL
HAVE SUCH AN ENERGY THAT IT
IS VERY, VERY DANGEROUS.
I CAN SAY NOW REALLY TO
SUMMARIZE, WE DIDN'T HAVE ANY
REALLY STRONG ACCIDENT, AND
THEREFORE WE ARE VERY THANKFUL.

The narrator says AT 1,738 METRES LONG, THE NEW
TRACK INCLUDES 580 METRES OF
SOME OF THE STEEPEST TRAIN
TUNNELS IN THE WORLD.

Niklaus says SUDDENLY YOU'RE OUT IN THE
OPEN AGAIN AND THEN THE NEXT
TUNNEL IS COMING, GETTING
SOME STEEPNESS.
IT'S REALLY RATHER AN AMUSEMENT
RIDE THAN A TRANSPORT FROM
A TO B.

The narrator says TWO OF THESE MASSIVE MOTORS
ENABLE BOTH CARRIAGES TO
ACHIEVE MAXIMUM SPEED,
WHATEVER THE GRADIENT.

Niklaus says ACTUALLY WE ARE NOW IN THE
MACHINE ROOM, THAT'S WHY IT'S
A BIT NOISY.
THAT'S THE BULL WHEEL.
IT'S ACTUALLY TRANSFERRING THE
MOVEMENT FROM THE MOTOR TO THE
ROPE AND THE ROPE IS CONNECTED
THEN TO THE CAR.
THAT'S HOW THE MOVEMENT FROM THE
DRIVE HERE FROM THE BULL WHEEL
IS TRANSMITTED TO THE CAR.
IMAGINE 36 KILOMETRES AN HOUR AT
50 DEGREES INCLINATION.
THAT'S A BIG SPEED.
IT'S THE FASTEST IN THE WORLD
ON AN INCLINATION LIKE 110 percent.

The narrator says ACCOMPLISHING ALL THE
DEMANDS IT SET OUT TO ACHIEVE,
THE STOOSBAHN CAN CARRY 1,500
PEOPLE EVERY HOUR ON THE
STEEPEST RAILWAY IN THE WORLD.

Niklaus says THE TRAVEL SPEED IS ABOUT TWO
AND A HALF TIMES AS MUCH AS THE
OLD FUNICULAR WAS.
THE CARS ARE BIGGER.
THIS MEANS THAT WE HAVE
DRASTICALLY INCREASED THE
TRANSPORT CAPACITY.

The narrator says EVERY DAY, THE BRILLIANT
ENGINEERS OF THIS FUTURISTIC
FUNICULAR KEEP THE VILLAGERS
AND THEIR VISITORS CONNECTED.

Bruno says ALL THE TIME WHEN I
SEE THE TRAIN IS PASSING HERE,
IT'S A GREAT FEELING.
IT'S, IN A WAY, INDESCRIBABLE,
AFTER 14 YEARS HARD WORK.
I'M SO PROUD TO SEE HOW THE
TRAIN GOES UP AND THE BABY'S
REALLY BORN AND IT WORKS!

The narrator says BUT FOR OTHER RAILWAYS AROUND
THE WORLD, A CLIMB DOESN'T HAVE
TO BE STEEP TO BE AN ENORMOUS
ENGINEERING CHALLENGE.

(music plays)

The narrator says BIRMINGHAM- A CITY IN THE
MIDLANDS OF BRITAIN.
AND ONE THAT IN THE EIGHTEENTH
CENTURY WAS STRIVING TO BE AT
THE HEART OF INDUSTRY.
BUT WITHOUT A RAILWAY
CONNECTING THE CITY TO A MAJOR
PORT, IT WAS YET TO BECOME A
REALITY.
CIVIL ENGINEER FRASER GODFREY
IS AT A SITE ON THE OUTSKIRTS
OF THE CITY, THAT WOULD SEE
ENGINEERING OPINIONS DIVIDED.

Fraser is in his thirties, clean-shaven and with short wavy brown hair. He wears a blue suit and a white shirt.

He says BIRMINGHAM, BY THE LATE
16TH CENTURY, WAS A CENTRE OF
MANUFACTURING.
SO, GROWING IN ITS INDUSTRY,
IT WAS VERY KEEN TO CONNECT TO
BRISTOL IN ORDER TO FACILITATE
THAT TRANSPORTATION OF GOODS
POSSIBLY AROUND THE WORLD.

The narrator says AT THAT TIME, THE PORT TOWN
OF LIVERPOOL HAD DIRECT TRADE
WITH AMERICA AND WAS THRIVING.
BRISTOL AND BIRMINGHAM DREAMT
OF A LINK THAT WOULD ALLOW THEM
TO COMPETE WITH THESE BIG
COASTAL CITIES AND BOOST THEIR
ECONOMY.

Fraser says IN THE 18TH CENTURY, THE
ONLY WAY TO GET FROM BIRMINGHAM
TO BRISTOL WAS VIA CANAL AND
THAT WAS A SIX DAY JOURNEY.
SO REALLY, RAILWAYS BECAME AN
OBVIOUS CHOICE TO USE TO
DISTRIBUTE THEIR GOODS AROUND
THE COUNTRY.

The narrator says BUT THERE WAS ONE MAJOR
OBSTACLE FOR ENGINEERS TO
OVERCOME.

Fraser says BIRMINGHAM, AS WE CAN SEE
QUITE CLEARLY HERE, IS ON A
PLATEAU, AND IT IS ABOUT
70 METRES HIGHER THAN THE
SURROUNDING AREA.

The narrator says ALONG THE SOUTHWESTERN EDGE
OF THE PLATEAU ARE TWO PARALLEL
RANGES OF HILLS WITH A VALLEY
IN BETWEEN KNOWN AS THE LICKEY
HILLS.

Fraser says HILLS ARE A GREAT
ENGINEERING CHALLENGE.
HOW DO YOU OVERCOME A HILL?

The narrator says DETERMINED TO CONQUER THE
INCLINE, THE RAIL COMPANY
CALLED UPON SOME OF THE WORLD'S
BEST ENGINEERS, INCLUDING
ISAMBARD KINGDOM BRUNEL.

Fraser says HIS APPROACH WAS TO TAKE A
DIFFERENT ROUTE, TO ENABLE A
MUCH SHALLOWER GRADIENT,
ABOUT 1 IN 300.

The narrator says BUT BRUNEL'S PROPOSED ROUTE
WOULD TAKE THE RAILWAY FIVE
KILOMETRES FURTHER EAST, MAKING
IT LONGER AND MORE COSTLY TO
BUILD.
INSTEAD, BEATING HIM TO THE
CONTRACT, CAPTAIN WILLIAM
MOORSOM CAME UP WITH A MUCH
BOLDER SOLUTION.

Fraser says HE DECIDED ON THIS ROUTE
STRAIGHT UP THE SIDE OF THE
LICKEY HILLS, WHICH FORMED THE
LICKEY INCLINE.

The narrator says A 3.2 KILOMETRE STRETCH
WITH A GRADIENT OF 10 DEGREES,
AROUND TEN TIMES STEEPER THAN
HEAVY TRAINS OF THE TIME
COULD NEGOTIATE.

AND THE ONLY WAY TO OVERCOME
THE GRADIENT WOULD BE TO USE AN
ADDITIONAL ENGINE DESIGNED TO
PUSH EACH TRAIN UP THE INCLINE
BY GIVING AN EXTRA BOOST OF
POWER-- AN INGENIOUS SYSTEM
KNOWN AS BANKING.
AND ONE THAT THEY STILL USE
TODAY.
ENGINE DRIVER RICHARD HIGGINS
IS TAKING TO THE LINE TO BANK A
FREIGHT TRAIN.

Richard is in his fifties, with very short gray hair and sideburns. He wears a uniform.

He says WE'RE NOW DEPARTING TO GO
TO BROMSGROVE VIA NEW STREET.
THE TRAIN WE'RE DUE TO BANK
SHOULD ALREADY BE HERE, BECAUSE
WE'RE BEING PUT DOWN INTO THE
PLATFORM.
WE'RE JUST COMING INTO THE
STATION NOW.
WE'RE GONNA GO UP BEHIND THE
TRAIN THAT'S DUE TO BE BANKED.
I THINK IT WEIGHS ABOUT
1,300 TONNES.

The narrator says THERE ARE TWO METHODS OF
BANKING: BUFFERING, WHICH IS
SIMPLY PUSHING THE TRAIN, OR
COUPLING, ATTACHING THE BANKING
ENGINE TO THE TRAIN IT IS
ASSISTING.

Richard says SOME TRAINS NOW USE
AUTO-COUPLERS FOR AN AUTOMATIC
RELEASE.
YOU PRESS IT, IT RELEASES THE
JAWS, IT LIFTS THIS UP WHICH
LIFTS THE LOCKING MECHANISM
UNDERNEATH, LETS THE JAWS OPEN,
AND THE TRAIN'LL PULL AWAY
FROM YA.
AND YOU JUST STAY AND FALL BACK
AWAY FROM IT.
HELLO, BROMSGROVE.
0 BRAVO 0-1.
I'M BUFFERED UP BEHIND
6 ZULU 4-6 NOW, READY TO
DEPART.
WITH THIS TRAIN NOW, I JUST HAVE
TO PUSH IT UP THE BANK.
IF IT'S GOT THE AUTO-COUPLER ON,
YOU SET THE AUTO-COUPLER UP AND
YOU COUPLE UP TO THE TRAIN AND
YOU USE THIS CONTROL HERE, THE
MASTER SWITCH.
AND THAT'S YOUR REMOTE
UNCOUPLER.
AND YOU...

He flips a switch.

(CLANGING)

Richard says NOW, WHEN YOU DO THAT, THE
TRAIN IN FRONT WILL JUST PULL
AWAY FROM YOU WHEN IT'S REACHED
THE CROWN AND IT'S STARTING TO
DROP AWAY.
RIGHT, WE'RE GOING.
(BEEPING)

The narrator says TODAY'S MORE POWERFUL
LOCOMOTIVES ARE ABLE TO COPE
WITH THE INCLINE.
BUT THE PRINCIPAL OF BANKING IS
STILL NEEDED FOR TRAINS HEAVIER
THAN 1,200 TONNES OR THOSE
WITH A LOW COUPLING STRENGTH.

Richard says A LOT OF THE FREIGHT TRAINS
THAT COME UP HERE, THE MAJORITY
OF THEM DO NEED BANKING.
IT'S AN IMPORTANT JOB FOR US
BECAUSE OTHERWISE THEY'D HAVE TO
BE DIVERTED AND THEY GO A LONG
WAY ROUND WHICH IS NOT VERY
ECONOMICAL FUEL-WISE.

The narrator says IT'S THE MAXIMUM HORSEPOWER
OF 3,300 THAT THESE MIGHTY
BANKING ENGINES PROVIDE THAT
MAKE IT POSSIBLE TO PUSH
1,000-TONNE TRAINS UP THE
INCLINE.
(BEEPING)

Richard says RIGHT, WE'VE JUST COME OFF.
THIS IS THE TOP OF THE INCLINE,
A PLACE CALLED BLACKWELL.
WE'VE JUST COME OFF THE TRAIN
NOW 'CAUSE HE'S-- HE CAN CARRY
ON HIS OWN FROM HERE.

The narrator says AND THIS IS STILL THE MAIN
RAIL LINK BETWEEN BIRMINGHAM
AND BRISTOL, MADE POSSIBLE BY
THIS STEEPEST SUSTAINED
MAIN-LINE RAILWAY INCLINE IN
GREAT BRITAIN.

Fraser says AS A PIECE OF
CIVIL ENGINEERING, THE LICKEY
INCLINE IS REALLY QUITE BASIC.
IT'S A RAILWAY UP THE SIDE OF A
HILL.
BUT AS A PIECE OF MECHANICAL
ENGINEERING, THIS CHALLENGE
FORCED ENGINEERS TO DEVELOP
MORE AND MORE POWERFUL
LOCOMOTIVES, WHICH HELPED WITH
THE DEVELOPMENT OF LOCOMOTIVES
ULTIMATELY ACROSS THE WORLD.

(music plays)

The narrator says FOR TRAINS IN THE MOUNTAINS,
GETTING TO THE TOP ISN'T THE
ONLY THING TO CONSIDER.

Klaus is in his forties, bald and with a thick beard. He wears glasses, black trousers, a gray sweater, a blue shirt, and an orange safety vest.

He says GOING THROUGH THIS TIGHT
CURVE WITH A LOCOMOTIVE, YOU
WILL BE SQUEEZED BETWEEN THE
RAILS AND NOT ABLE TO MOVE
FORWARD OR BACKWARD.

The narrator says --WHEN BUILDING IMPOSSIBLE
RAILWAYS.

(music plays)

The narrator says MOUNTAIN RAILWAYS.
OVERCOMING MIGHTY PEAKS... .TO CONNECT SOME OF THE MOST
REMOTE DESTINATIONS.
BUT SOME RAILWAYS ARE RENOWNED
THE WORLD OVER FOR THEIR
HERITAGE.
GOING UP ONE MOUNTAIN IS
STRAIGHTFORWARD ENOUGH.
BUT WHEN YOU HAVE TO GO THROUGH
A WHOLE RANGE OF THEM... THERE'S A CHALLENGE AROUND
EVERY CORNER, AND EVERY CORNER
IS A CHALLENGE.

In animation, a high-altitude train conductor facing several peaks says OH, COME ON!

(music plays)

The narrator says THE ALPS.
EUROPE'S HIGHEST AND WIDEST
MOUNTAIN RANGE.
COVERING 1,200 KILOMETRES OF
FORBIDDING PEAKS AND VALLEYS,
THIS IMPENETRABLE LANDSCAPE
SHOULD PUT THE BRAKES ON ANY
PLAN TO BUILD A RAILWAY.
BUT IN THE HEART OF AUSTRIA'S
ALPINE COUNTRY...
(SPEAKING IN GERMAN)

The narrator says OPERATION MANAGER KLAUS
BENESCH IS TAKING TO THE TRACKS
TO SEE HOW A SEEMINGLY
IMPOSSIBLE LINE THROUGH THE
MOUNTAINS BECAME A REALITY.
(WHISTLE BLOWING)

Klaus says RIDING ON THE LOCOMOTIVE
IS AN EXPERIENCE BECAUSE YOU
FEEL THE POWER OF THE STEAM
BEING FREED INTO THE PISTONS
TO WORK THERE AND... AND TO
PROPULSION TO THE TRAIN.
IT'S ALMOST A LIVING ANIMAL.

The narrator says TODAY, TRAINS LIKE THIS
ONE CARRY TOURISTS.
BUT IN THE GOLDEN AGE OF STEAM
THEY PLAYED A VITAL ROLE IN
TRADE ACROSS THE MIGHTY
AUSTRO-HUNGARIAN EMPIRE.
THE STEEP PEAKS OF AUSTRIA'S
SEMMERING PASS, THOUGH, MADE
PLOTTING A ROUTE FOR THE TRAINS
TO TRAVEL HERE AN ENGINEER'S
WORST NIGHTMARE.

Klaus says LOOKING BACK TO THE 19TH
CENTURY, THE MAIN PORT OF
AUSTRIA IN THE TOWN OF TRIESTE
WAS BLOCKED BY MOUNTAINS TO
VIENNA.
SO A RAILWAY LINE HAD TO BE
BUILT ACROSS THE MOUNTAINS OF
SEMMERING.

The narrator says 895 METRES ABOVE SEA LEVEL,
THE STEEP GRADIENTS AND TIGHT
CURVES THE LINE WOULD NEED TO
NAVIGATE LEFT MANY CONVINCED IT
SIMPLY COULDN'T BE DONE.
BUT ONE MAN THOUGHT OTHERWISE.
IN 1848, ENGINEER CARL RITTER
VON GHEGA DECIDED HE COULD
DEFY THE ODDS.

Klaus says I THINK PEOPLE THOUGHT GHEGA
WAS A LITTLE CRAZY, TRYING TO
OPERATE A NEW RAILROAD LINE, BUT
TODAY IT'S THE SAME.
HOW DO SOME PEOPLE THINK ABOUT
NASA'S IDEAS TO TRAVEL TO MARS?

The narrator says HIS SOLUTION TO OVERCOMING
THE PERILOUS PASS WAS THE
GAME-CHANGING SEMMERING
RAILWAY.

(music plays)

The narrator THE FIRST MOUNTAIN RAILWAY
EVER BUILT.
ITS 41 KILOMETRES OF LOOPING
TRACKS CARVE A PATH THROUGH THE
LANDSCAPE, WITH 15 TUNNELS
AND 15 VIADUCTS.

Kerstin says THE SEMMERING
RAILWAY IS THE FIRST RAILWAY
LINE IN THE WORLD TO BECAME
UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE AND SO IS
VERY FAMOUS ALL OVER THE WORLD.

The narrator says HERITAGE RAIL EXPERT KERSTIN
OGRIS HAS COME TO KALTE RINNE,
WHERE THE MONUMENTAL SCALE OF
THE TASK WHICH FACED GHEGA IS
STILL CLEAR TO SEE TODAY.

Kerstin says WE SEE HERE THE KALTE RINNE
VIADUCT- ONE OF THE MOST
IMPORTANT VIADUCTS OF THE
SEMMERING RAILWAY.

The narrator says STANDING 46 METRES HIGH AND
CURVING 189 METRES ACROSS THE
VALLEY, ITS ROWS OF TOWERING
ARCHES ARE A TESTAMENT TO THE
TREACHEROUS TERRAIN THE LINE
NEEDED TO CROSS.

Kerstin says A BIG CHALLENGE WAS THIS
VIADUCT HAS NARROW CURVES.
AND THIS IN COMBINATION WITH THE
GRADIENTS, IT'S VERY-- IT'S VERY
DIFFICULT TO BUILD IT.
AND THEY USED SUCH ORDINARY,
SIMPLE TOOLS.
THEY TAKE THIS STONE CHISEL AND
AN ORDINARY HAMMER AND ALSO THIS
IRON TO SPLIT THE STONES.
IT WAS VERY AMAZING WHEN YOU
THINK ABOUT THAT THIS BIG
VIADUCT IS ONLY MADE BY HAND.

The narrator says BUT DEEP RAVINES WEREN'T THE
ONLY OBSTACLE GHEGA HAD TO
OVERCOME.
THE ROUTE HE CHOSE MEANT TRAINS
HAD TO CLIMB A PRECIPITOUS 457
METRES HEIGHT DIFFERENCE-
AN IMPOSSIBLE FEAT FOR EXISTING
LOCOMOTIVES OF THE TIME.
(WHISTLE TOOTING)

Klaus says SEMMERING FEATURES GRADES,
CURVES, AND MOUNTAINOUS TERRAIN
THAT WAS NEVER CONQUERED BEFORE
BY A RAILROAD IN EUROPE.
AT FIRST, GHEGA TOOK A REGULAR
ENGINE AND MADE TRIALS ON A TEST
RIG THAT HAD A STEEP GRADIENT
AND HE FOUND OUT THAT THE
REGULAR ENGINE CAN'T OPERATE
OVER THE GRADIENT BECAUSE OF THE
VERY LOW FRICTION BETWEEN STEEL
WHEELS ON STEEL RAILS.

The narrator says NEGOTIATING BOTH GRADIENT AND
TIGHT CURVES CALLED FOR A BRAND
NEW BESPOKE LOCO.
AND SOME INSPIRED THINKING FROM
GHEGA.

Klaus says HE STARTED THE SEMMERING
COMPETITION WHERE SEVERAL
MANUFACTURERS OF ENGINES COULD
PROVIDE THEIR IDEAS ON HOW TO
CONQUER THE STEEP GRADES.
THE CONTESTANTS MANAGED TO COVER
THE ALREADY FINISHED SECTION OF
THE LINE, BUT NO MODEL WAS
SUITABLE FOR A LONG TIME
OPERATION AT REASONABLE COSTS.

The narrator says INSTEAD, IT WAS ONE OF THE
CONTEST JUDGES, ENGINEER
WILHELM FREIHERR VON ENGERTH,
WHO SOLVED THE CONUNDRUM.

Klaus says AFTER THE COMPETITION WAS
HELD, ENGERTH FOUND OUT THAT
THERE ARE SEVERAL GOOD IDEAS
THAT COULD BE USEFUL AND HE
IMPLEMENTED THOSE IDEAS INTO HIS
DESIGN, ALTERED IT A LITTLE, AND
A USEFUL ENGINE WAS THE RESULT.

The narrator says ALTHOUGH BUILT AROUND 60
YEARS AFTER ENGERTH'S ENGINE,
THIS MH CLASS LOCOMOTIVE SHARES
THE INNOVATIONS WHICH MADE IT
SO GROUND-BREAKING.

Klaus says WHEN YOU APPROACH THE ENGINE
FROM THE FRONT, YOU FIND A
REGULAR GEARBOX, THE CYLINDERS
UNDERNEATH THE SMOKESTACK.
IT BECOMES VERY SPECIAL WHEN WE
REACH THE POINT WHERE THE ENGINE
CONNECTS TO THE TENDER.
NORMALLY A TENDER IS A REGULAR
COACH FILLED WITH WATER AND
FUEL.

The narrator says UNLIKE TRADITIONAL TRAINS
WHERE THE TENDER IS A SEPARATE
WAGON, ENGERTH'S IDEA WAS TO
BUILD AN ENGINE AND A TENDER
ON AN ARTICULATED FRAME.

Klaus says YOU SEE HERE THE END OF THE
LOCOMOTIVE AND THE BEGINNING OF
THE TENDER FLOOR.
AND PUTTING THE TENDER FRAME
OUTSIDE...UP TO THIS POINT,
YOU PROVIDE A BIGGER SPACE FOR
A LARGER FIREBOX AND THUS THE
CAPABILITY OF PRODUCING ENOUGH
STEAM TO GO UPHILL FOR A LONG
TIME.

The narrator says THE EXTRA WEIGHT OF PART OF
THE ENGINE ON THE DRIVING
WHEELS OF THE TENDER HELPED
INCREASE THE TRACTION ON THE
RAILS.
ENGERTH'S SOLUTION ALSO HELPED
SOLVE THE PROBLEM OF NAVIGATING
THE SNAKING SECTIONS OF CURVED
TRACK.

Klaus says IMAGINE GOING THROUGH THIS
TIGHT CURVE WITH A LOCOMOTIVE
THAT IS VERY LONG AND HAS A
RIGID AXLE BASE.
LIKE A STRAIGHT LINE, IF YOU
DRAW THE STRAIGHT LINE, ONCE YOU
WILL REACH THE OTHER RAIL AND
YOU WILL BE SQUEEZED BETWEEN THE
RAILS AND NOT ABLE TO MOVE
FORWARD OR BACKWARD.
ENGERTH SOLVED THIS BY PUTTING
IN A PIVOT POINT IN THE MIDDLE
OF THE LOCOMOTIVE SO IT'S BENDY.

He draws concentric arches on the train's dirt and AS AN EXAMPLE YOU HAVE THE PIVOT
POINT AND THE FLOOR OF THE
ENGINE, THE FLOOR OF THE TENDER,
AS SEEN FROM ABOVE, AND THE
TENDER CAN MOVE FREELY TOWARDS
THE SIDES USING THE PIVOT POINT.

The narrator says IN 1853, ENGERTH'S LOCOMOTIVE
SUCCESSFULLY TRAVERSED THE
ENTIRE 41-KILOMETRE LENGTH OF
THE SEMMERING LINE.
FINALLY CONNECTING VIENNA WITH
THE SEA, AND COMPLETING CARL
RITTER VON GHEGA'S RAILWAY
THROUGH THE ALPS.

Kerstin says GHEGA WAS VERY
INTELLIGENT AND A GREAT
VISIONARY.
AND OF COURSE HE HAD TO TAKE
COURAGE TO DO THIS, TO REALIZE
THIS PROJECT.
SO HE WAS PERHAPS CRAZY.

(music plays)

The narrator says SINCE THE INVENTION OF THE
RAILWAY, MOUNTAINS HAVE BEEN
THEIR MAJOR ADVERSARY.
INSPIRING REMARKABLE CREATIONS.

Kerstin says IT WAS THE HIGHEST
MOUNTAIN THEY PASS BY RAILWAY,
SO IT WAS A BIG CHALLENGE FOR
THE ENGINEERS AND ALSO FOR
THE HUMANS.

The narrator says ELEVATING ENGINEERING TO NEW
HEIGHTS.

Steffen says IT'S ABSOLUTE GENIUS WITH
MARVELLOUS MACHINES AND
ENGINEERING OF THE WHOLE
MOUNTAIN RAIL SYSTEM.

The narrator says TO CREATE IMPOSSIBLE
RAILWAYS.

Niklaus says IT'S REALLY A GREAT
EXPERIENCE TO SEE IT RUNNING.
I THINK IT'S AN AMAZING
ENGINEERING ACHIEVEMENT, PRETTY
SPECIAL.

Music plays as the end credits roll.

Narrated by Matthew Skilton.

Producer-directors, Tom Weller and Tom Weston.

Executive producer, Neil Edwards.

Series producer, Sharon Ryan.

Distributed by two Four Rights.

Produced in association with Yesterday.

Copyright 2018, TwoFour.

Watch: Episode 2 - Reaching New Heights