The Mariazell Railroad - 3

When producing the shots for this galleries, a similar number of photographs of uphill and downhill driving trains was taken.

Part 1 and 2 focussed on uphill trains. This third part of the Mariazell Railroad gallery starts in Mariazell and continues downhill to St. Poelten with skip to part 4 at Laubenbachmuehle.

In total the line passes 21 tunnels and more than
24 bridges and viaducts! Some technical information regarding the energy supply: As mentioned, the line's energy supply is 6,5 kV and 25 Hz.

This selection was taken between 1907 and 1910, when the decision for electric supply was setteled.

At the very beginning between 1898 and 1911 the line was operated by steam locomotives.
From 1911, March 27th on, when the first regular train headed by E3 (1099.003) departed, this system worked well. At that time the E-class locomotives were the first single phase AC powered machines at all in Austria.

In 1912 the first standard gauge line was supplied by electric energy (Mittenwaldbahn).
Starting with that line, all new standard gauge lines were equipped with 15 kV and 16 2/3 Hz.
Due to that fact the Mariazell system got an island system.

Even in present the line is suffering a bit under this cut off from the main stream. New locos are always matter of expensive special development and a small numbers of units.
Maybe new technologies (e.g. Taurus) can open new opportunities, because voltage and frequency of primary supply is not that decisive anymore today.

This line presentation consists of 7 parts:
Part 1
and Part 2 gives impressions of the uphill drive from St. Poelten to Mariazell.
Part 3 and Part 4 change direction and guide back from Mariazell home to St. Poelten.
Part 5 collects additional impressions from and around the line and Part 6 is dedicated
to steam operated special events. Part 7 finally gives impressions of winter operation.

All photographs taken in August 2003, except otherwise stated.
I wish you a lot of fun! - and of course feedback of site visitors welcome!


Usually trains are positioned, that images presenting the whole Mariazell station building front are not possible. As visible I was a lucky guy this day. In August 2003 afternoon trains depart from Mariazell hourly between 2 and 5 p.m.

Click on images to get enlarged presentation!

Train 6844 consists of two class 5090 railcars on Sundays. This day 5090.014 and 5090.016. The twin is departing from Mariazell.
Adjacently to the station, some museum tramway is located connecting Mariazell and Erlaufsee. The two persons are dealing with fence repair.

  The rail track first passes the small Mariazell airport and then enters some forest sections. The mountain Mariazeller Hut dominates the scenery in the background, when train 6816 passes this location. (top of page).  
  Before approaching the Mitterbach station, train 6842 departing Mariazell at 11 a.m. has to cross the highway. The shot was taken from the highway bridge. The telegraph pole in the back is an interface between open wire and cable section.  
  Train 6858 stops at Mitterbach station. Several passengers step in. In the foreground some curiosity of the line is visible. Track 2 was accessible in former times even from north. Later a part of the rail track was de-installed. Obviously someone forgot the removal of the points facilities…  
  When continuing, the line again crosses the highway. This time using the 1. floor. This shot I took from some opposite slope. Train 6848 is headed by a class 2095 machine this day. (top of page).  
  Now again the Kuhgraben bridge. This time not from opposite lake shore, but directly from the front. To eliminate image distortions I adjusted my zoom to 15 mm focal length. Because of that, I could realize totally parallel stays at the left sided signal plate.  

Behind the Erlaufklause station the Zinken Pub is visible. Tired hikers may recreate here some time when waiting for a next train. In the background the Gemeindealpe mountain and right the lake Erlauf is located behind the forest.

  The 108 m long Erlauf Klaus tunnel visible in the back immediately follows the Erlaufklause station area. The train passes the Zinken bridge and will enter the Zinken tunnel in a few moments. People told, that photographers felled some trees here without any owner agreement short time ago …
(top of page).
  When approaching the 375 m long Kienbach tunnel, a train has to pass the Kienbach Klaus bridge and the Erlauf Kienbach bridge. On the photograph, a class 5090 railcar passing the Kienbach Klaus bridge. The Erlauf Kienbach bridge will follow up 100 m later.  
  After the Kienbach tunnel is passed, trains have to cross the Lassing Kienbach bridge. The approaching colourful train made possible this shot. Due to the extensive growth of vegetation, the portal of the Kienbach tunnel which was still visible in the background at the end of the 80s is totally hidden today.  
  The bridge crossing the Raingraben is 40 m long like the Lassing Kienbach bridge before. I was surprised when recognizing that train 6849 was operated by twin locos this morning. In a few moments it will enter the 269 m long Raingraben tunnel. (top of page).  
  Close behind the Raingraben tunnel, some forest drive crosses the rail track. Railcar 5090.014 gives some acoustic horn signals in order to make sure attention. The 180° turn close to Wienerbruck will be the next section getting approached.  
  Now the 180° turn is taken by some class 2095 operated train. Because not far away a Restaurant called Gasthof Burger is located, this turn also is called Burger turn.  
  Short stop in Annaberg. The rail track efficiently uses the Reith sattel to pass over to a new line section without tunnel. A similar situation we will see at Winterbach a second time. (top of page).  

The Saugraben viaduct is 116 m long and 37 m high. It is built with 3 arches. In bends, the rail track is equipped with a third rail. In case of derailing it shall prevent that vehicles totally leave the track line or even crash to the ground.

  Continuing to Goesing, the Ameiskogel tunnel gets crossed. Close behind the portal which is visible in the background, the Goesinggraben viaduct is the next building.  
  The Goesing station is located close to the Goesing seminar hotel. This day a 1099 got defect at the Puchenstuben station. Another one from Mariazell picked up the train and hauled it to the Goesing station. Here the defect loco was declutched and the train therefore arrived at Mariazell late. The image shows the parked 1099 and train 6848 before crossing with train 6857. (top of page).  
  The main tunnel of the Mariazell line is the 2368 m long Goesing tunnel. It starts adjacently behind the Goesing station and exits again at the upper end of the Nattersbach valley. The young Nattersbach on this image is hidden right between the green thicket. A train is departing the portal.  
  The Heugraben viaduct with three arches complies to the standard viaduct construction scheme. It needs to be passed before Puchenstuben station is approached.  
  A plain Jaffa design train has approached Puchenstuben station. Jaffa design was the usual design at the 80s of last century. This image was taken in 1986 and at the right, the old station building is still visible. It was replaced in 1996 by a new building. 1099.003 has a 7 carriage train on its hook. (top of page).  

This train which is a fragment of the proud 10 wagon train with twin loco haul of this morning, is approaching Winterbach station. Because of the mentioned 1099 fault the twin locos needed to be separated and also carriages were composed new.

  To pick up the single passenger a train stops at Winterbach station. At the right the old station buildings are visible, left behind a new building which actually is used as dwelling house and at the left border, even the Winterbach hotel is visible. Close from here the first 180° right turn will be passed. On the way there, the train will for a short time enter the Jessnitz valley.  
  This gulch appears more dramatic than it is in reality. Behind Winterbach station the 180° right turn to enter the middle ramp is passed. For that purpose a mountain cone is driven around. This gulch was blown up for better line tracking. After passing the gulch, passengers will have a beautiful view down left valleywards. (top of page).  
  A bit later the rail track already descended a lot. The Winterbach station is located at the ridge above the 1099 machine. The next tunnel to be passed is the Stettenriegel tunnel.  

Just 43 meters and a straight construction enables taking a shot through the Stettenriegel tunnel. If hiking in this area, trains are recognized acoustically three times: upper - middle - lower ramp section. Next comes the Meierlberg tunnel.

  Before approaching the Meierlbergtunnel this gulch like section need to be passed. Construction was necessary for securing the unstable rock surfaces. (top of page).  
  At 52 km the three arched Meierlberggraben viaduct gets approached. Behind the bend in the background, the former train crossing station Ober Buchberg is located. It is out of operation since 1974.  
  On Sundays 4090 railcars make a morning circle ride to Mariazell and back. On its return, the railcar passes the Weisswasser viaduct which is located close to the middle of the middle ramp section.  
  A train regularly passes the Buchgraben viaduct with a speed of about 35 km/h. In 1981 a train due to a handicapped driver accelerated that much, that most vehicles of the composition derailed and some including the loco 1099.015 crashed down the mountain flank. The driver came to death and vehicles including the locomotive where that damaged, that they got scraped directly here. (top of page).  
  From a farm at the opposite hill side this view to the line is possible. The train at the lowest ramp will approach Laubenbach station in a few minutes. Photos of model railroads sometimes look similar.  

From the Winterbach ridge trains in the more than 300 m lower valley ground look like toys. Laubenbach station will be approached in few moments and this is at the same time the end of part 3.

Next consecutive images at Part 4

Navigation: Rail world select - Mariazell Line: Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 4 - Part 5 - Part 6 - Part 7
Last Update: December 2004 - send me an email
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