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The Trackside Lounge, 3Q 2013

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The Trackside Lounge, 3Q 2013
Posted by CNW 6000 on Monday, July 1, 2013 6:25 AM

Welcome to The Trackside Lounge, Third Quarter 2013 Edition.  Here's a link back to last quarter's edition: http://cs.trains.com/trn/f/111/p/216525/2414653.aspx#2414653

I will start this quarter off with my trip plans for today. 1) Head to Manitowoc, WI to shoot L548 (still using a WC Caboose!) 2) Head to Sheboygan, WI to find some UP local and coal action. 3) Swing past Plymouth, WI for some WSOR action.  Maybe. 4) Finish up on Byron hill for the late afternoon run.

To top it off...I have vacation this week and the weather seems like it will be near perfect.  I'm not gonna cry!

Dan

Dan

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Posted by CNW 6000 on Monday, July 1, 2013 6:25 AM

Of course, the above might be trumped if I get intel suggesting other goodies are elsewhere!  Stay tuned.

Dan

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Posted by zugmann on Monday, July 1, 2013 9:29 AM

Well, it's that time of the decade again.  I'm starting to get back in the camera thing, and my current computer is a now on the mostly old and somewhat slow side (and the card reader doesn't always work).

Been exploring all the options for optimal photo editing ( will most likely be getting an IPS monitor, too).  PC/Mac, Win 7/8, SSD, all that cool stuff on the table.  Now just to find the best combination of it all... probably be upgrading to lightroom, maybe even photomatix to try some of the HDR stuff.

  

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Posted by CShaveRR on Monday, July 1, 2013 1:13 PM

Dan, if you have a whole week, it would be great if you could bring Misty and the Birthday Boy (can't believe he's four already!) down this way for some serious train-hunting!

A lot of closure was observed on the trip home from Michigan yesterday.  No, not the trendy definition of the term--we actually had to make detours because of roads that were closed for railroad-related projects.

CN's new trackage around the to-be-expanded Gary airport is apparently laid across Chicago Avenue and under U.S. 12.  At least that's how it looked when we couldn't go west on Chicago Avenue any more.  Don't know how permanent the closure is--it isn't too hard to get around it, so the grade crossing might not be installed.  The bridge over CN and CSX tracks on old U.S. 12 (Columbus?) is open now, though I don't know easy it would be to stop at or near for observation.  CSX had a grade crossing here previously.

I was also going to check out Blue Island, to see how the track layout in that area had changed, with CSX getting hold of some CN trackage through there.  Al;as, Broadway is closed (until later this month, I think), so we had to go around, missing everything.  I suspect that one can still watch trains from either side of the grade crossing, but if the street's out the sidewalks are, too--and I don't think the railroads would take too kindly to someone walking across.  It looked like major crossing renovation--we'll have to see if connections were reworked in the process.

Still in a home without communication, but today could be the day things are restored.  I'd better tear myself away from the station platform and let the cable-guy in!

Carl

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Posted by mudchicken on Monday, July 1, 2013 5:15 PM

CShaveRR

 

CN's new trackage around the to-be-expanded Gary airport is apparently laid across Chicago Avenue and under U.S. 12.  At least that's how it looked when we couldn't go west on Chicago Avenue any more.  Don't know how permanent the closure is--it isn't too hard to get around it, so the grade crossing might not be installed.  The bridge over CN and CSX tracks on old U.S. 12 (Columbus?) is open now, though I don't know easy it would be to stop at or near for observation.  CSX had a grade crossing here previously.

Chicago Ave (IN-312) might be closed for a while. Gary is running outta buck$ quickly and NS' part of the bargain has yet to start. (Sadly, we may have caused some of the delay cleaning up the CR/IN-DOT mess left behind from 1980 (Cline Ave IN-912 Buffington Harbor Dr). Got most of that figured out and have a good idea of who failed to follow thru....but still cannot figure out some of what PRR/PC/CR did. Weird.)

US-12 should be Industrial Highway which was closed while they built the grade separation/ ski jump.

The CN stuff is all ex-EJ&E main track being threaded around the end of the new runway. (wave goodbye to the J's steel bridge over Industrial Hwy and the failing/ truly scary bridge over the old PRR Ft Waye line. CN got a good deal in all of this.

The mess where Clarke Junction where the PRR,Wabash and B&OCT all danced is about to be the next big cloud of dirt. NS will abandon anothe big chunk of ex-Wabash because of the airport runway (so that people can flee Gary in bigger planesQuestion) I would expect that shortly some of the long dormant PRR/CRNS&CSX line rusting in the weeds with new rail and ties (no anchors, 2 inch sapplings in the cribs) will also come back to life..

(I really coulda used you to run an errand at Crown Point, but....)

Mudchicken Nothing is worth taking the risk of losing a life over. Come home tonight in the same condition that you left home this morning in. Safety begins with ME.... cinscocom-west
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Posted by CNW 6000 on Tuesday, July 2, 2013 8:48 AM

Great synopsis MC.  It's fascinating how all that stuff shakes out.  Untying the Gordian Knot, so to speak.

Carl - doubt a Chi trip is in the cards.  I've been slated for a few more home repairs and some mandatory time playing with the little guy while he can still be classified "little".  I will keep that in mind for another time though.

Trip yesterday went completely the other way.  Instead of looping to the E/NE I ended up going S/SW.  Started out in Van Dyne on CN, Brandon and Markesan w/WSOR, Beaver Dam on UP, Reeseville on CP, Clyman Jct on UP, then Watertown on CP and finally Theresa on CN then to home. 

Dan

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Posted by zugmann on Tuesday, July 2, 2013 11:19 AM

Propane car on fire at a unloading terminal. 

Hopefully it is brought quickly under control.

http://lancasteronline.com/article/local/868040_Propane-railway-car-on-fire-in-Rapho-Township.html

  

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Posted by CShaveRR on Tuesday, July 2, 2013 11:03 PM

I just got back in--the article now says they've let it burn itself out.  Hope the guy who got the freeze-burns is improving.

(The article also says "tanker cars"...a pet peeve of mine.  They're tank cars, doggone it!)

I was able to get out on the scoots today and run a couple of payday errands, and also inspect the three-tracking project around Proviso.  Track 3 has been relaid between Bellwood and the new connection switch for Provo Junction. The bridge over Addison (or Mud) Creek has been widened now to accommodate both Track 3 and the Provo Connection, and grading for said connection appears to be well underway. The missing stretch of Track 3 is being laid from the east, and the new concrete ties are close to the IHB bridge now. No ballast yet on recent construction.

MC, thanks for the Industrial Drive correction, and all of your comments on the project--I was just plain drawing a blank on the name of the road.   I could have looked at a map, but nooooo....  "Ski jump" seems apt for that new bridge, now open.

Carl

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Posted by billio on Wednesday, July 3, 2013 7:37 AM

CShaveRR



(The article also says "tanker cars"...a pet peeve of mine.  They're tank cars, doggone it!)

YES!!

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Posted by jeffhergert on Wednesday, July 3, 2013 8:12 AM

It seems like "tankers" or "tanker cars" is becoming more prevalent in the media.  Anymore it seems most railfans use the term, too.  I'm with you guys, they're tank cars.  I've also noticed many fans are starting to call grain trains, if not the covered hoppers themselves, "grainers."  I think I almost dislike that more than "tankers."

Carl, I tried looking for that sand train you mentioned last quarter.  I think it did go south at Nelson.  I never saw any unusual symbols come across the river that went to any of the road pools out of Clinton.  I did see that engine number but by the time I saw it, it was headed back to Proviso on a manifest coming up from Missouri or Arkansas.  The previous assignments had already been deleted.  

I should have tried looking sooner, but last week I was a bit preoccupied.  The wife while on her way home from work decided to do a bit of deer hunting with her car.  She came out OK and was able to get the car home, but it didn't come out OK.  Insurance company decided to total it out, we already have a replacement picked out.  Don't know about the deer, but I doubt it came out OK either.  

Jeff 

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Posted by mudchicken on Wednesday, July 3, 2013 11:02 AM

Carl:

We have to go back there one last time (I think*) to set property corners. We may yet meet out there.

 

(*) As soon as we set the pins, the trained monkeys on the dreaded yellow machines will be right there to tear them out with blades and cat tracksAngryAngryAngry

Mudchicken Nothing is worth taking the risk of losing a life over. Come home tonight in the same condition that you left home this morning in. Safety begins with ME.... cinscocom-west
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Posted by Deggesty on Wednesday, July 3, 2013 11:36 AM

Jeff, it certainly can be a frightening thing to hit a deer or any other fairly large animal. The worst I ever hit was a yearling calf which thought it could cross a road ahead of me. I knocked it into the ditch by the road, and I had to have work done on the right front end, and a few days after hitting the calf I saw its former owner, who acknowledged that the calf had no business being out of its pasture.

I have heard tales of having a deer not only being hit, but also coming through the windshield and kicking about, doing great damage to whoever was in the front seat. Your wife can certainly give thanks that she did not have that experience.

I agree as to terminology; it is evident that people who have no knowledge of the description of certain cars will take the description of something quite different--or dream up their own description (what is a semi-truck; how is it divided; down the middle or halfway between the front end and the rear end?). And, why should a railroad be called a "train company?"

Johnny

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Posted by tree68 on Wednesday, July 3, 2013 5:26 PM

Deggesty
I have heard tales of having a deer not only being hit, but also coming through the windshield and kicking about, doing great damage to whoever was in the front seat.

I may have told this one here before.

Back in the 60's several fellows went to northern Michigan (lower peninsula) deer hunting.

They got skunked.

On the way back, near Saginaw (IIRC) they hit a deer with their car.  The picture in the paper showed the deer on the trunk lid, looking for all the world like pretty much any hunting trophy tied to the trunk lid that you've ever seen.

Catch was that the deer got there by going through the car, not over.  None of the car's occupants survived.

Then there's the recording of the fellow who hit a deer and put it in the back seat of his convertible, thinking it was dead.  It wasn't.  After coming to, it kicked the daylights out of the driver, the convertible top, and just about everything else.

The recording is supposedly from the 9-1-1 call, and includes the fellow providing all the above details, as well as complaining about the dog pulling on his pant leg (no doubt covered with "residue" from the deer) as he was talking to the 9-1-1 operator.

If you're not rolling on the floor, in tears from laughing so hard, by the time the recording is over....

LarryWhistling
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Posted by CShaveRR on Wednesday, July 3, 2013 8:15 PM

Jeff, I hope Becky's all right after that encounter.  I've never been involved in a car-deer collision (my younger sister isn't so lucky--she's  been in several...I'm surprised she decided to move back to Michigan permanently).


I may have told my deer tale here before, too, but I'm not gonna let that stop me...

I was getting toward the end of a 60-mile bike trip in western Michigan.  I was beat (it may have been the last time I ever did this), and it was getting dark, so I was moving a little more slowly than I really wanted to (railroad-related?  of course...I was on the Hart-Montague Trail, which is a former C&O/Pere Marquette roadbed).  I was concentrating on just keeping moving when three huge deer thundered by in front of me, from left to right (toward the Lake).  Had I been about ten feet further along on the trail, I probably would have sustained some serious injuries.  Those things were jumping high enough in their running that my head could have taken a hoof-hit--and I'm not sure the helmet would've done much good.  I don't know what spooked them, but they sure spooked me!

MC, would love to be able to get together if the need for you to come this way again should arise.

Carl

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Posted by rvos1979 on Wednesday, July 3, 2013 9:32 PM

Depending on where one creams a deer with a semi, either the deer or the semi will be obliterated.....

Back when I used to wrench on trucks instead of drive them, had a husband-wife team come in with their 1996 Western Star.  The wife was driving across North Dakota when she obliterated a deer.  Tweaked the aluminum front bumper a bit, and I think the steps on the drivers side fuel tank were bent slightly, and the driver's side was completely covered in blood and guts.  We had to pull it inside for some work (this was wintertime), and after an hour, the stench got so bad in the front office, we had to pull the truck back out.  We put a wash on their fuel card to clean the guts off, I'm sure Blue Beacon loved that one.......

Randy Vos

"Ever have one of those days where you couldn't hit the ground with your hat??" - Waylon Jennings

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Posted by CNW 6000 on Wednesday, July 3, 2013 11:16 PM

Last winter I was riding with my neighbor in his '82 F350 with 8' plow on the front.  Bambi's mom tried to make it...but the plow saved the truck.  Not pretty.

Carl - UP keeps sending nice C45ACCTE's up on the CNAPM/C701 coal trains.  No complaints here!  They were even so kind as to send a patched CNW AC44 up last week too. 

Yesterday's catch was a pair of IC (CN) C40-8W's leading a northbound container train, Q193.  Funny thing about that was it was all single stacked!  Either way - I'll take it.

TTFN.

Dan

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Posted by CNW 6000 on Sunday, July 7, 2013 10:17 AM

My last day of vacation for now.  11 days off sure was nice.  Caught some trains, spent plenty of time with Aedan and had time to relax.  Can't complain.

Caught lots of ex-Oakway SD60s yesterday as they worked on CN.  They sure sound nice attacking Byron hill!

Dan

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Posted by CShaveRR on Sunday, July 7, 2013 2:53 PM

I'm trying to figure out a surprise sighting I got yesterday.

I hadn't expected to see anything at all train-wise, as Pat and I were out on a hiking trip with another couple from our church.  After the hike we were hungry and thirsty, so we went to the Two Brothers Brewing Company in Warrenville.  I had no idea how close it was to a railroad track until a train surprised the four of us (the tracks are beneath a small embankment on the other side of the parking lot and a field).  Be sure and get a west window...we were just lucky!

The railroad was the CN, former EJ&E, somewhere between Eola and West Chicago.  The train was westbound (geographic north), moving right along.  The power, however, was a pair of CP units and a blue lease switcher!  I wonder what they were doing there.


Today I ventured up on the new bridges (not yet officially open, but certainly in use!) that carry the Great Western Trail over two streets and the UP tracks toward the eastern edge of Lombard.  It wouldn't be easy to shoot off the bridge itself, thanks to the obligatory chain-link fence, but some shots might work from the areas adjacent to the bridge, particularly on the west side.  C'mon over and give it a try!

Carl

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Posted by CNW 6000 on Sunday, July 7, 2013 4:07 PM

Carl - was the numbers on the CP units 5014 and 5015?  Did you see CN 2508 with the train?

Dan

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Posted by CShaveRR on Sunday, July 7, 2013 7:48 PM

Couldn't tell you, Dan--by the time I was able to get to that window the units were past me.  No CNs, though--just the two CPs and the blue.

Carl

Railroader Emeritus (practiced railroading for 46 years--and in 2010 I finally got it right!)

CAACSCOCOM--I don't want to behave improperly, so I just won't behave at all. (SM)

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Posted by CShaveRR on Sunday, July 7, 2013 7:58 PM

Carl

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Posted by mudchicken on Sunday, July 7, 2013 8:05 PM

"The Content Is Currently Unavailable"

Mudchicken Nothing is worth taking the risk of losing a life over. Come home tonight in the same condition that you left home this morning in. Safety begins with ME.... cinscocom-west
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Posted by rvos1979 on Sunday, July 7, 2013 8:27 PM

Working fine down here in Florida, Carl......

In Wildwood, FL tonight, headed to Orlando in morning to give Mickey Mouse his adult beverages (Guess he likes the stuff from Chippewa Falls)......

Managed to swing by the house on the Fourth, saw that the city of Burlington is installing medians in some of the railroad crossings to better comply with quiet zone laws.

See everyone later.....

Randy Vos

"Ever have one of those days where you couldn't hit the ground with your hat??" - Waylon Jennings

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Posted by zardoz on Sunday, July 7, 2013 8:27 PM

mudchicken

"The Content Is Currently Unavailable"

My wife says I should have that tattooed on my forehead.

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Posted by CShaveRR on Monday, July 8, 2013 9:56 AM

zardoz

mudchicken

"The Content Is Currently Unavailable"

My wife says I should have that tattooed on my forehead.

At least she isn't suggesting that there's no content.

Carl

Railroader Emeritus (practiced railroading for 46 years--and in 2010 I finally got it right!)

CAACSCOCOM--I don't want to behave improperly, so I just won't behave at all. (SM)

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Posted by CNW 6000 on Monday, July 8, 2013 11:32 AM

CShaveRR

Once I signed into FB they worked fine.

That train was you saw would become X341.  The CP and GMTX units got set out at Stevens Point.  CP power will go west to MN on L517 and the GMTX will be going north to Superior Silica Sands if I read things right.

Dan

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Posted by The Butler on Monday, July 8, 2013 2:55 PM

Carl, make sure the setting on the Facebook pictures is set to "Public."  Otherwise, only "Friends" on Facebook can see them.

James


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Posted by CNW 6000 on Tuesday, July 9, 2013 6:17 AM

Another hot one on the books (for this year so far anyway) is in store for today.  I, however, will be out in the boat fishing on the Fox River today...and getting close up pictures of the new CN bridge replacing the CNW bridge in Oshkosh...I mean fishing.

Why is work less fun after vacation?  Ugh..

Dan

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Posted by CShaveRR on Tuesday, July 9, 2013 4:16 PM

Thanks, James!  I've changed it for those pictures, and i hope it helps.

Today we gave the check for our final payment on the house renovations to the contractor with a ceremony and blessing held in the remodeled kitchen.  Now we spend the rest of our lives rebuilding the home-equity line of credit that was nearly depleted.  And tweaking of our living space for almost as long.

Had to chuckle...one of the people who came over today was our pastor.  He hadn't seen our house since just before they began tearing down our old sewing room.  And today, with everything nicely in place, I think he said "Wow!" about nine times before he said anything else.

Carl

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CAACSCOCOM--I don't want to behave improperly, so I just won't behave at all. (SM)

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Wednesday, July 10, 2013 4:53 PM

CShaveRR

Thanks, James!  I've changed it for those pictures, and i hope it helps.

Today we gave the check for our final payment on the house renovations to the contractor with a ceremony and blessing held in the remodeled kitchen.  Now

Carl I hope you got lein releases from all sub contractors and suppliers  ??

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