On 23-25 September 1993, local railroad enthusiasts in the Gdańsk area held a weekend of special events. Saturday, September 24 was marked by an excursion over some of the lines of the 750mm gauge narrow gauge system based southeast of Gdańsk at Nowy Dwór Gdański, known as the Gdańskie Koleje Dojazdowe. That morning we departed Nowy Dwór in a special coach attached to a regular service train. At Stegna Gdańska, we met up with MBd1-class motor car #137, which would power our excursion. The excursion first ran from Stegna west to the Vistua River at Prawy Brzeg Wisly. The motor car ran around the train, and we then returned back to Stegna and turned south down to Nowy Dwór. We travelled 60 km on the narrow gauge that day. The following images were taken on the trip.

The photos illustrate how the lines looked toward the end of its days as part of the national railway, PKP. Three years later, in 1996, the railway would be closed by PKP.

This was not the end of the story, however. In the year 2000, efforts started between local enthusiasts and authorities to reactive some of the lines. The Żuławskij Kolej Dojazdowy was established. In 2003, PKP signed over the remaining infrastructure and rolling stock, and in that same year passenger trains ran again, this time carrying tourists. Seasonal service has operated each year since then. For more information, visit the organization’s web page: https://kolejzulawska.pl

But now, let’s return to 1993 and take a trip on the 750mm narrow gauge!:

Train at Stegna Gdańska

Having arrived at Stegna Gdańska, the vintage coach for the day’s excursion is set off on a wye track.

 

Freight cars at Stegna Gdańska.

In 1993, the railway still handled some freight traffic. Here hopper cars for sugar beet loading at set out on a side track at Stegna Gdańska.

 

At Stegna Gdańska.

The rail motor car sets out the excursion coach at Stegna Gdańska.

 

At Stegna Gdańska

The rail motor car sets out the excursion coach at Stegna Gdańska.

 

MBd1-137 at Stegna Gdańska.

The power for today’s train, motor car MBd1-137 was waiting at Stegna Gdańska.

 

Excursion train at Stegna Gdańska.

MBd1-137 has tied onto the coach, and we are ready to leave Stegna Gdańska and head west.

 

PKP narrow gauge coach

The sign on the coach indicated some of the stations we would be visiting today.

 

Run-around at Prawy Brzeg Wisły

The line ends at Prawy Brzeg Wisły, and the motor car had to be run around the coach.

 

MBd1-137 at Prawy Brzeg Wisły

MBd1-137 sits at Prawy Brzeg Wisly (literally the “Right bank of the Vistula”), while running around the train for a return east to Stegna. Beyond the embankment in the background is the Vistual River. At one time, this narrow-gauge network was connected onward to Gdańsk by a railway car ferry across the Vistula at this point.

 

MBd1-137 at Prawy Brzeg Wisły

MBd1-137 creeps into the passing track at Prawy Brzeg Wisły.

 

MBD1 at Prawy Brzeg Wisły

The MBd1 was no longer in regular passenger service by this point, but was brought out especially for this trip. Here it has just run around the train at Prawy Brzeg Wisły.

 

Excursion train at Prawy Brzeg Wisły

The trip prepares to depart from Prawy Brzeg Wisły.

 

Train from Prawy Brzeg Wisły to Stegna Gdańska

The excursion train en route from Prawy Brzeg Wisły to Stegna Gdańska.

 

Fall colour on the line

Fall color was apparent as we travelled eastward from Prawy Brzeg Wisly.

 

Travelling eastward to Stegna Gdańska

Travelling eastward to Stegna Gdańska

 

Travelling eastward to Stegna Gdańska

Travelling eastward to Stegna Gdańska

 

Travelling eastward to Stegna Gdańska

Travelling eastward to Stegna Gdańska

 

19930924Stegna-2

The station at Jantar Młyn consisted of a small waiting shelter. The 1994 PKP timetable still showed five passenger trains in each direction over this line!

 

Crossing the road near Stegna

After a stop at a level crossing for the 501 main road, our train continued its travels through a wooded area just west of Stegna Gdańska.

 

Excursion train at Stegna Gdańska

Stegna Gdańska was a junction point for the lines to Sztutowo, Nowy Dwor, and Prawy Brzeg Wisły. The station building was in the center of the wye. This was where we paused for lunch.

 

Crossing the Szkarpawa at Rybina

After lunch, the excursion train headed south. At Rybina, we crossed the Szkarpawa River on a swing bridge.

 

Crossing the Szkarpawa River on a swing bridge at Rybina

Crossing the Szkarpawa River on a swing bridge at Rybina

 

The bridge tender's shanty at Rybina

The bridge tender’s shanty at Rybina was made out of an old narrow-gauge freight wagon.

 

At the Rypina swing bridge

A small boy watches #137 as we pause for a photo stop at the Rypina swing-bridge.

 

Cab of MBd1-137

Visitors were invited into the cab as we rocked down the line. There was nothing unusual here between the frilly sunshades, Black Madonna above the windows and the magazine centerfold pinned to the ceiling!

 

Turntable and repair shops at Nowy Dwór Gdański

The line’s maintenance shops were located at Nowy Dwór Gdański. There was a turntable and engine house.

 

The maintenance facility at Nowy Dwór Gdański

The maintenance facility at Nowy Dwór Gdański

 

Map at Nowy Dwór Gdański

Old equipment awaits its fate behind a map of the narrow-gauge system.

 

Equipment at Nowy Dwór Gdański

The typical assortment of out-of-service equipment found at Nowy Dwór Gdański. In the foreground hand destination boards for the trains.

 

Station at Nowy Dwór Gdański

On the way home, we stopped at Lisewo. Here we found a scheduled PKP passenger train.

 

The first part of this article covered a visit to the railway at Lisewo in 1990. You can read it here:

On the Gdańsk Narrow-Gauge Railway (GKD)—Part 1

 

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