There are hundreds of photos and dozens of videos on The Squirrel Valley Railroad. Whether your special interest is coal mines, logging, mills, coal yards, lead mines, gravel depots, nut factories, mattress factories, passenger trains, passenger stations, excursion runs, elevated trains, subways, gold mines, gold mills, cities, yards, mountains, rock formations, cliffs, animal scenes, nature scenes, human action scenes, commercial buildings, stores, ponds, streams, oceans, waterfalls, small towns, junctions, bridges, landscaping, nostalgia, docks, processing plants, tunnel portals, furniture factories, industries, lumber yards, distribution warehouses, refineries, farms, funny scenes, or from-the-movies scenes like our green slime that’s like what The Green Slime and The Blob had, or our living dead zombies leaving a graveyard that’s like what Night of the Living Dead had, or our meteor crater scene that’s like what The War of the Worlds had, The Squirrel Valley Railroad has it all!
To access any of the photos and videos of any of these features of The Squirrel Valley Railroad, simply click on one of the 81 numbers or 12 letters next to a feature on the overhead layout diagram. Think of it as an interactive version of one of the layout diagrams in a magazine such as Model Railroader (our favorite).
While you're using our diagram, you’ll decide what mode you'll be in: Close-up (side), Side View, Top View, or Video, and you'll stay in that mode until you choose a different mode. The Mode selection menu is a set of four buttons found in the upper left corner of the screen. Once you see a feature’s photo in one mode, you may wish to click a different Mode button and see the same scene from a different viewpoint. Or look at all the features in a certain area of the layout in one mode, then switch to a different mode and check out all those features once again—from a new viewpoint.
The Video Mode will answer the question: "What kind of action goes on in this area?" You'll soon find out—complete with sounds.
Technical Info and System Requirements
The Squirrel Valley Railroad DEMO: This is simply an online website in which you can try out enough of The Squirrel Valley Railroad action to see if you want to get the DOWNLOAD. In going to the DEMO site, make sure you start from squirrel-valley-railroad-demo.htm in order for everything to work right.
If you are using Internet Explorer, or if you have some other browser or even a Mac and are positive your browser will be able to handle any Windows Media Video (.wmv) file it encounters, you'll have the opportunity to select .wmv format videos. If you're unsure about playing videos of the .wmv format, then select the MPEG (.mpg) format instead.
Note: Some Firefox and Mozilla and Netscape users will be able to play .wmv files, but many will not, due to various issues with plugins, and/or Microsoft not including all needed files in the XP operating systems accompanying some off-the-shelf computers bought retail. No problem: All Windows computers have Internet Explorer and Windows Media Player, and they all play .wmv files. You'd have to have an ancient computer or have found a way to delete IE or Windows Media Player in order to have .wmv problems. If you find a way to make the wmv files work on Firefox or Opera, good for you, but if there are problems, use IE!
Note: Mac Users wanting to use .wmv files: If you are using a Mac with OS X 10.3.9 or later and if you don't already have it, you need to download Flip4Mac here. (Flip4Mac™ WMV is a collection of QuickTime components that allow you to play Windows Media video files on your Mac using QuickTime 6.5, 7.0 or later.)
The Squirrel Valley Railroad DOWNLOAD: The download layout will cost only $9.95 and you can pay with all major credit cards or electronic check.
The file you download will be a .zip file that you can unzip/extract and there will be a READ ME.txt to read and a file called START-HERE.htm for you to double-click. This will allow you to see this program as a web page on your LOCAL (offline) browser. If you're unfamiliar with offline vs. online, the sites you see offline on your local computer don’t have to download over the internet—they work fine even if you have NO connection to the Web. They run from .htm or .html *usually) files on your hard drive. Since all the videos and pictures are right there and need no downloading, once you initially download The Squirrel Valley Railroad, all files and pictures appear almost instantly every time you access this local copy of The Squirrel Valley Railroad from then on. And that’s why we decided to have a download you can buy—so each and every one of those hundreds of files will load right away, RATHER THAN MAKING YOU SIT AND WAIT!
System requirements: The DOWNLOAD requires that you have 240 MB hard drive space and the ability to run .wmv files. All Windows computers have Internet Explorer and Windows Media Player, and they all play .wmv files. You'd have to have an ancient computer or have found a way to delete IE or Windows Media Player in order to have .wmv problems. If you find a way to make the wmv files work on Firefox or Opera, good for you, but if there are problems, use IE! And if you have a Mac with OS X 10.3.9 or later, download Flip4Mac to run the wmv files.
ONCE YOU HAVE THE DOWNLOAD, WHICH IS 237 MEGABYTES AND WILL PROBABLY TAKE A FEW HOURS TO LOAD, HERE'S WHAT TO DO:
TO GET TO AND OPEN THE READ ME FILE:
1. Double-click on the SquirrelValley.zip file
2. When you see a READ ME.txt file, right click on it and select Open.
3. If Notepad or another text file editor doesn't open the file, select Open With and then choose Notepad.
TO EXTRACT AND USE THE FILES FROM THE ZIP FILE:
1. Right click on the SquirrelValley.zip file and select Extract To.
2. Press the New Folder button.
3. We suggest creating a new folder in your My Documents (Documents for Vista) folder called Squirrel Valley.
4. IF your default browser is Internet Explorer, once the files are extracted, double-click on the START-HERE.htm file.
5. If your default browser is NOT Internet Explorer, right click on the START-HERE.htm file and select Open With and choose Internet Explorer (since that has the best .wmv video player and you'll be playing a lot of them). If you choose a non-IE browser, you'll take your chances with the players that come up in Firefox or Opera or others, if any come up at all. They are NOT known for doing well with .wmv files! Let's hope they get a clue and support these files better.
6. Every time you wish to enjoy the Squirrel Valley Railroad in the future, repeat step 4 or 5 or make a shortcut. There's already one called Shortcut to START-HERE.htm in your extracted files. Right click on it and select Send To and then choose Desktop. This can be your starting place if you like. Rename it Squirrel Valley RR if desired.
If you wish to contact us, or send us layout pictures we may want to publish on aglasshalffull.org, contact us HERE.
Sounds for the Squirrel Valley Railroad provided by Green Frog Productions (http://www.greenfrog.com) , Model Rectifier Corporation (http://www.modelrectifier.com) , and Bachmann Trains (http://www.bachmanntrains.com)