The 78th anniversary of the arrival in the mountain city of Esquel of the old Patagonian express will be celebrated tomorrow with the recreation of the “Assault on the Train”, where actors on horseback will impersonate a band of robbers who will try to board the mythical Trochita at speed, in an event highly anticipated by residents of that region of Chubut and tourists.
As reported by the Government of Chubut, this proposal consists of a theatrical scene where “Jack Bradford and his bandits” will add the representation of an assault on the train, to the traditional excursion carried out by La Trochita in Esquel.
Bandits with semi-hidden faces, a sheriff, gunshots and horseback riding will provide a fun show for tourists who have booked the Saturday afternoon tour, which is already complete.
Although there is no record of the existence of rural bandits who had actually assaulted La Trochita, it is known that since the beginning of the last century there were outlaws in Patagonia, such as the case of the American Butch Cassidy, who lived on a ranch in Cholila, a few kilometers of Esquel.
“Tomorrow at 9:30 we will carry out the act in commemoration of the 78th anniversary of the arrival of the Train in Esquel, which occurred on May 25, 1945,” the director of the Provincial Executive Unit of the Ministry of Agriculture, Pablo Muñoz, told Telam. , and pointed out that later, at 10, there will be “the presentation of the new image of the train developed by professionals from our organization.”
The undersecretary noted that “it is an image that has a component, retracting the history of what the train is and at 2:00 p.m. we will be with what the assault on the train is, where a group of 15 to 20 residents of Esquel carry out this performance”.
“The cast has been doing this since 2004, in 2016 they stopped doing it, so after a year of talks with them, we were able to recover this important event, so symbolic for the train and that we know generates a lot of expectation in people” , Muñoz expressed to this agency.
And, he pointed out that “the 10 o’clock service is a traditional service on Saturdays in the low season, it is full and the 14 o’clock service is also full. So the truth is that we are satisfied with this, it is very good.”
“We sincerely look forward to what will happen tomorrow. We know that in addition to the tourists who are going to board the train, there are many people from the surrounding area,” he said.
The train arrived at Ingeniero Jacobacci, a small town located in the southern central plateau area of Río Negro, in 1917.
In 1921 it was decided to connect this town with Esquel and in 1922 the locomotives (50 Henschel and then 25 Baldwin) and wagons were commissioned.
From there begins the route that reaches Esquel through 402 kilometers and more than 600 curves.
This laying was carried out over almost three decades without machinery, by force of human labor with a pick, shovel and explosives in an environment of merciless winters and parched summers.
With great effort, with interruptions due to national and international economic conditions, the power line advanced in 1941 to El Maitén, and then on May 25, 1945, La Trochita reached Esquel for the first time.
Initially, the train only transported cargo, but from 1950 it became a fundamental means of transportation for the inhabitants of northwestern Chubut and since then the long journeys aboard La Trochita have become a mark of identity for the region.
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