Refurbished ‘Big Boy’ locomotive fires up crowds

A restored big steam engine is back on the tracks in the American West celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Transcontinental Railroad

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - A nearly 80-year-old steam locomotive has been restored and is back on the tracks in the American West to help celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Transcontinental Railroad.

Big Boy Number 4014 is longer than two city buses and weighs more than a Boeing 747 fully loaded with passengers. It rolled out of a Union Pacific restoration shop in Cheyenne, Wyoming, on Saturday.

See related story Rollout of Big Boy No. 4014 steam locomotive

Big Boy engines hauled freight between Wyoming and Utah in the 1940s and 1950s. Only eight remain, and Number 4014 is the only one that's operational.

The massive locomotive will tour the Union Pacific system throughout the year in honor of the 1869 completion of the Transcontinental Railroad.

It will be in Ogden, Utah, this week for a celebration that will also feature the last steam locomotive delivered to Union Pacific, the "Living Legend" Northern Number 844.

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