Two steam train tours are to be held next month and in November to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the fan-shaped train maintenance depot in Changhua County, the Tri-Mountain National Scenic Area Administration said yesterday.
The depot, built in 1922, has made Changhua County the hub of the Taiwan Railways Administration’s (TRA) Mountain and Western Trunk lines on the west coast, and is a maintenance base for locomotive services, the Ministry of Culture’s Bureau of Cultural Heritage said.
The Aug. 13 and Nov. 5 tours will take tourists from Changhua Railway Station to Ershui Station in a steam train led by a DT-668-model locomotive, which is known as the “King of Steam Trains,” administration director Tsao Chung-yu (曹忠猷) said.
Photo: Chang Tsung-chiu, Taipei Times
The DT-668 locomotive is the TRA’s heaviest steam locomotive and has the best traction, Tsao said, adding that railway fans and steam-train enthusiasts can order tickets online starting at 10am tomorrow.
Passenger numbers for each tour are capped at 260, he said.
To celebrate the depot’s 100th anniversary, the TRA has also introduced a new boxed lunch featuring braised pork belly, a Changhua favorite, and is available now at the Changhua and Taichung TRA stations, and at the high-speed rail station in Taichung.
The agency said that it recruited a chef in Taichung who selected top-quality pork belly, which is fried until golden brown, and seasoned with sugar, garlic, spring onions and spices. She developed a marinade using soy sauce and rice wine, which is boiled before adding the pork belly and pickled Chinese mustard.
The pork must be marinaded for about three hours for optimum flavor, the TRA said.
Side dishes include fried boiled peanuts with edamame, fried king oyster mushrooms with salted duck eggs, spiced corned eggs, fresh vegetables and fried yam rolls.
Only 80 pork belly bentos are being sold daily, it said.
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