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Next Episode: Episode 50

Episode 49: James and the Trouble with Snow

James proves to the others how he can manage snow. But he is soon proven otherwise.


  • Thomas
  • James
  • Toby
  • Duck
  • Emily
  • Molly
  • Daisy
  • Spencer
  • Sir Topham Hatt
  • Edward (cameo)
  • Henry (cameo)
  • Gordon (cameo)
  • Percy (cameo)
  • Stanley (cameo)
  • Donald or Douglas (cameo)
  • Neville (cameo)
  • Dennis (cameo)
  • Zack (cameo)
  • Harold (cameo)
  • Annie, Brittany, and Clarabel (cameo)
  • Martha and Jennifer (cameo)
  • Henrietta and Victoria (cameo)
  • Rocky (cameo)
  • Hector (cameo)
  • Oliver (mentioned)
  • Eagle (mentioned)
  • Bertie (mentioned)
  • Duncan (mentioned)


Narrator: It was snowing on the Island of Sodor. The railway lines had never been so thick with snow. Sir Topham Hatt arrived at Tidmouth Sheds in Harold the Helicopter. He had some bad news.

Sir Topham Hatt: Due to heavy snowfall, the roads and rails are blocked by heavy snow! But, that will not stop my railway from running! Donald and Douglas are going to plow the snow on the main line so Gordon can still run the Express today!

Narrator: Gordon was pleased.

Sir Topham Hatt: Henry, Edward, you two must work with Eagle to take coal up to the mountain village and for the narrow gauge engines. And Thomas... you are to work with Emily, Toby, Duck, and James in taking passengers as well as Bertie the Bus’ because he can’t run the roads today.

Narrator: Thomas frowned. He liked working with Emily, Toby, and Duck, but James was different.

Sir Topham Hatt: Percy, Stanley, and Oliver will stand by as a rescue team, and you all have to wear snowploughs.

Narrator: All the engines groaned in annoyance. Thomas was too cold to put up a fuss at the fitting yard. He went to the carriage shed, collected Annie and Clarabel and they all headed to Knapford. Thomas puffed into Knapford Station. Emily was already there, with Martha and Jennifer.

Thomas: Hi, Emily.

Emily: {through gritted teeth} Can't talk.

Thomas: Why?

Narrator: Emily signaled Thomas with her eyes towards some children in a nearby field. They were building a snow engine. It looked a lot like Emily.

Emily: {through gritted teeth} I have to sit perfectly still for it to be perfect!

Narrator: Just then, Toby and Duck puffed in.

Toby: Sorry we're late, the coaches were buried by snow so we had to wait for the workmen to clear it off.

Duck: And, I had to get my snowplough fitted, because Toby has cowcatchers.

Thomas: I wish Donald and Douglas could travel along my branch line and clear it of snow.

Narrator: Then a loud whistle sound blew through the air, shaking some snow off the glass roof of Knapford and landing on top of Thomas, Toby, Duck and Emily.

Emily: @&$! it! My chances of having a snow engine replica are ruined!

Narrator: James pulled in blowing his whistle loudly. He noticed the four engines.

James: {to Thomas, Emily, Toby, and Duck} Look at you lot! Wearing snowploughs! I don’t need a snowplough. Snow is silly soft stuff.

Thomas: Snow can be dangerous, too! I was stuck in a snowdrift once, I had to be rescued by Terence the tractor.

James: I don’t need some little orange tractor to help me.

Narrator: The others said nothing. They had heard James' boasting before. He bumped his coaches, and they didn't like it one bit.

Coaches: Ouch! That was too bad!

Narrator: To make James even more cross, this time, no one came near him. The guard's whistle blew, and James started in a huff.

James: Silly engines. I don't need a snowplough.

Narrator: Later, he stopped at Wellsworth. Molly was there with a train of coal trucks.

James: Why do you take coal trucks in winter?

Molly: It's for the other steam engines like you and me, and for the stations in case it gets cold. You do need to wear a snowplough. It's Sir Topham Hatt's orders.

Narrator: James didn't like being told what to do by a girl engine, and he set off hastily.

Molly: Wait, James! It’s not time to go yet!

Narrator: But James was too far ahead to hear Molly. James was running easy in the country, the coaches weren’t having a good time though. James was too cross to argue with the coaches' complaints. He was thinking about what to say to Thomas the next time they met when all of a sudden, he was diverted into a siding by frozen points, he applied his brakes, but the rails were so icy that he ploughed through the buffers and into a snowy pile in a field.

James: {muffled} Oh, $#%&!

Narrator: But his cursing was muffled by snow. Then came more trouble. James felt cold on the inside of his tank. His driver checked him.

James' driver: Your water tank has frozen. We need some anti-freeze.

Narrator: He telephoned for help from Percy and Stanley.

James' driver: They’re going to be awhile. Duncan has been rocking and rolling and fell off the track.

Narrator: James felt very cold. It was 20:00pm when Percy arrived with anti-freeze. Stanley arrived with Rocky the railway crane and lifted James and his coaches back on the tracks. Percy hauled James to the fitting yards to warm up. The next day, James was warmed up but the snow hadn’t melted. Sir Topham Hatt arrived, he he wasn't very pleased.

James: It wasn't my fault, it was the coaches!

Sir Topham Hatt: It was your fault, James. You had no common sense. I've put you on coal duty with Eagle, Edward, and Henry.

Narrator: James groaned.

Sir Topham Hatt: And, you are going to wear a snowplough!

James: S-S-Snowplough?!

Sir Topham Hatt: Yes James, all engines are now required to wear a snowplow. Just look at Daisy, Spencer, Neville, and Zack.

Narrator: Daisy, Spencer, Neville, and Zack glared at James and looked angry with him.

Spencer: Nice one, James!

Daisy: Remind me to put you on the scrap list!

Narrator: James' heart melted. When he returned, he pulled coal for the rest of the winter. One afternoon, he stopped at a station and saw Molly, taking passengers.

Molly: Well, James, have you learned your lesson?

Narrator: ...she said kindly, but also very firmly.

James: {snapping} YES! I must've had old brakes!

Molly: You always say you learned your lesson, but you always become rude again. {As she puffs away.} When will you learn - properly?

Narrator: James said no more. After that, he and Molly had no more arguments. For a while.


Fun Facts

  • First time a narrow-gauge engine is mentioned in a standard gauge episode.

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