It's not the Hogwarts Express, but it's close
It's not the Hogwarts Express, but it's close Bosnian worker Sefik Salihovic drives the steam engine at the coal mine of Oskova in the Bosnian town of Banovici, 87 north of Sarajevo (AP photos)
It's not the Hogwarts Express, but it's close
Lexile: 800L

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ou can't board these trains in London and get off at Hogwarts. But their engines looks pretty much the same as in Harry Potter. And if you're a steam train enthusiast, the ride is almost as magical.

Every day, steam engines more than 60 years old defy their age. They pull wagons of coal from Banovici's coal mine to nearby towns. Banovici is in the country of Bosnia-Herzegovina. In the summer, the engines become the only tourist attraction the town has to offer. The mine allows visitors to take a ride on the narrow-gauge line. The rails are only 30 inches apart.

The coal mine planned to replace the old engines after Bosnia's 1992-95 war. But the sudden arrival of steam train enthusiasts inspired a change of plans. The company began to service the steam engines and put them back to work.

"About a thousand steam train fans come here every year," said Dzevad Hodzic. He is the coal mine's technical director.

Aside from those built in 1948 and still hauling coal, the most popular engine is one built in the Czech Republic in 1925. It stood for 35 years as an exhibit on a side track. Then management decided to restore it to service. The little train carries up to 50 tourists in its two carriages. It winds 6 miles through mountains. It has a top speed of 50 kilometers per hour. A ticket costs about $12.40.

The engine is the only one of its type still running in the world, Hodzic said.

He hopes the tourism business will expand. If it does, the Banovici coal mine can put more refurbished steam engines to work next year.

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Assigned 24 times

  • ashleighb-Hyl
    12/11/2014 - 11:56 a.m.

    This was an okay article. I hope they get a lot of tourists. It was fun to read about the trains and that people are putting more refurbished steam engines to work next year. :)

  • peytoni-Hyl
    12/11/2014 - 12:00 p.m.

    I think this article was fastinating. I thought the article was fanstinating because the article gave me details about a train I did not know about. The article told me where Hotwarts Express is loctaed, the Hotwarts Express is loctaed in Banovici.

  • nolanb-Hyl
    12/11/2014 - 12:05 p.m.

    I thought this article was very inserting because it was about TRAINS. Also it told you about the mine and that they repaired train engines too. So this is why I like this article.

  • samuelw-Hyl
    12/15/2014 - 12:02 p.m.

    The article was OK but i didn't really like it because the train is not fun because it it is not fun unless it was a train that took you to harry so it is not anything like the real Hogwarts express.This was my opinion of this article.

  • kaylal-Hyl
    12/15/2014 - 12:05 p.m.

    I really love this article. I love this article because it tells you that it is not the Hogwarts express but way better. I like how they tell you that they can put 50 people on the 2 carts at the same time. That is my comment.

  • tylero-Hyl
    12/15/2014 - 12:06 p.m.

    This article was okay i really do not like trains but it was cool knowing about the Hogwarts express.I also liked it told you about how it run.

  • emilianar-Hyl
    12/15/2014 - 12:11 p.m.

    I like how in the first par graph it says ''it was from Harry Potter''. It was very interesting to learn about engining and coal mining. It looks like a pretty cool train.

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