News & Current Events

This page shows interesting railroad happenings as well as breaking railroad news.   Check it often as you may learn the location or schedule of some interesting equipment in time to go out and get some great photographs! If you do go photo 'fanning, please share your pictures with and contact News Page Webmaster Wally Weart.

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From the Pueblo area and the Joint Line

ATSF 4-8-4 #2912 is looking good sitting in front of Pueblo Union Depot.  ©2019  Mike Harriman An interesting line of power in the Pueblo yard, featuring a fakebonnet, GP30, and SLAL #109, a chop nose Geep.  ©2019  Mike Harriman
Union Pacificís MNYPU pauses in Colorado Springs to switch some cars.  ©2019  Mike Harriman The PPL is south at Greenland where a typical late afternoon t-storm was moving in.  ©2019  Mike Harriman

An Illinois Central Look alike in Colorado

San Luis & Rio Grande RR found recently arrived Iowa Pacific 100, E9A, works great in freight service-! Unit had been tested on Antonito & Monte Vista, CO, trains in the San Luis Valley early June 2019. She had tank cars ready to go at Alamosa, CO, 14 June 2019. 2019 photo by Chip

Restored Colorado & Southern 8027

South Park Rail Society put restored Colorado & Southern 8027 narrow gauge boxcar on display at Como, Colorado starting 10 June 2019. Jason Midyette did the restoration and donated boxcar to the South Park Rail Society. Boxcar was moved by truck from Kansas to Como. 2019 photo by Chip

Foster Townsend Rail Logistics

Foster Townsend Rail Logistics Unit # Model FTRL (FTRX) 8201 ex-Canadian Pacific 8201, 8619 GP9R  Spotted at BNSF‚Äôs 31st Street Yard, Denver, 10 June 2019. Departs 11 June on H DENPVO for Ogden, Utah.Chip

A car for  the San Luis & Rio Grande

San Luis & Rio Grande 512 full dome was in Denver, Colorado, 7 June 2019 headed towards Alamosa, CO, later this month. ©2019 Chip

The "Pineapple Princess" is back at Silver Plume

This narrow gauge 2-6-2 has returned to Silver Plume, Colorado. Built by Baldwin in 1928 for Kahului Railway Company on island of Maui, Hawaii. #12 made its last run on May 24, 1966 in Hawaii. It was purchased by Scenic Railways and came stateside in 967, landing in California. Disassembled, it was shipped to Chama, New Mexico in the mid 70's where it was stored until 1988 when it was sold to Silverwood theme park in Idaho. A new boiler was built by John Braun/Mammoth Locomotive Works and #12 operated at the park sporadically until it was sold to the Colorado Historical Society in 2005 for use on the GLRR. The locomotive operated there through 2012 when a lease/trade agreement was negotiated with Midwest Central. #12 left the loop in August 2012 and operated seasonally at the Midwest Old Thresher grounds in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa. That lease has ended and #12 returned to the loop on June 5, 2019 where it will be operating this summer. ©2019 Dave Schaaf  

Photographer unknown

Electric motors on the move

Former Amtrak 929 & 938, AEM-7, headed for San Jose Caltrain corridor electrical operation was on Amtrak train 5, California Zephyr, running about 5-hours late at Lochbuie, Colorado. BNSF Brush Subdivision. Arrived Denver Union Station 12:30 PM, 6 June 2019.  ©2019 Chip

On the Joint Line

A loaded coal train crawls upgrade past the towns namesake rock. ©2019 Mike Harriman The PPL drops a car in Sedalia. This is as far south as the local would make it today. ©2019 Mike Harriman
A pair of helpers return northbound to Denver after assisting a train to the Palmer Lake summit. ©2019 Mike Harriman NS Virginia heritage unit #1069 stayed at Englewood on a loaded coal, waiting for a crew to take the train southbound. Hopefully this unit sticks with this train, and rotates back North through Colorado within the next few days. ©2019 Mike Harriman

"Foreign" power on the BNSF

David Grothe was able to catch two Ferromex locomotives helping out.  ©2019 David Grothe 

FLIRT DMU commuter transets on their way

Stadler built FLIRT DMU commuter transets for TexRail. The 8th and last set was on southbound BNSF train parked at LoDo Siding, Denver, CO, 3 June 2019.  ©2019 Chip Stadler FLIRT (Fast Light Intercity and Regional Train; German: Flinker Leichter Intercity- und Regional-Triebzug) is a passenger multiple unit trainset made by Stadler Rail of Switzerland.  ©2019 Chip

The Cimarron Valley 

The torrential rainstorms have cleared -Cimarron Valley Railway 8501, B40-8, at Satanta, Kansas, 30 May 2019. Former Rio Grande 3004, GP30, at right. ©2019 Chip
The torrential rainstorms have cleared -Cimarron Valley Railway 8501, B40-8, at Satanta, Kansas, 30 May 2019. ©2019 Chip
Impressive paint job on Cimarron Valley Railway 4052 with clear coat!  30 May 2019  Satanta, Kansas.  First day in sunlight! ©2019 Chip Cimarron Valley Railway 4052 with clear coat & fresh paint - Santa Fe inspired scheme!  30 May 2019  at Satanta, Kansas.  First day in sunlight! ©2019 Chip

The name lives on

On 25 May 2019, BNSF 9012 leads a southbound coal train over the old DRGW bridge in Monument, CO. ©2019 Chris Paulhamus

At Limon

Tied down at Limon. ©2019 Limonrail

A KCS Heritage unit

Kansas City Southern 4006, Veterans unit SD70ACe, came off the unit tank car train from Wellington, Utah, 23 May 2019 at Pueblo, CO. KCS 4006 was put on the Pueblo, CO, to Belen, NM, train due to depart Pueblo late 24 May. BNSF 6893 with KCS 4006 BNSF Pueblo Yard, Colorado, 24 May 2019. ©2019 Chip

4014 on the move

Fire in the Morning. In a collaborative effort one of my team, Don Hagen shot this at Granger, WY while 4014 and friends make their way west to the 150th anniversary of the Golden Spike. Don shot the image and I edited it. ©2019 Erik Lindgren The Big Boy racing down hill along Otto Road or old US 30 splits the signals on Sunday May, 19 2019 ©2019 Erik Lindgren
Homecoming. 4014 and friends arrive at Cheyenne after a long journey to Promontory and back. The train is just coming through the famous C&S (BNSF Front Range Subdivision bridge Call this a win for the home team! Sunday, May 19 2019 ©2019 Erik Lindgren Big Steam in Carbon County The westbound special flies past my team west of Hanna, WYO into the beautiful evening light nearing the end of its first days trip to Ogden. Laramie Subdivision May 4, 2019 ©2019 Erik Lindgren


Shortly after departing Laramie, the engines begin their assault on Sherman Hill.  ©2019 Mike Harriman

Pictures of interest

Union Tank Car donated three ex-military General Electric switchers (UTC 1301, 1302 & 1303) to the Evanston Roundhouse Complex, Wyoming, April 2019. Union Tank Car's repair facility in Evanston, Wyoming, had three General Electric switchers to switch cars. UTC 1301 is a GE 45-ton locomotive with a dropcab for tight clearances (this is a former military unit), originally numbered US Army 8568 and, later, USAF 8568. Evanston, WY, next to turntable pit 12 May 2019. ©2019 Chip Eastbound UP unit potash train passed UP 4014 Big Boy at Evanston, WY, May 7, 2019. The UP Steam Team returned safely to Cheyenne, WY, Steam Shop on Sunday, May 19, 2019. Next outing for the Big Boy is likely mid-July 2019 going east to Omaha, NE. ©2019 Chip
Union Tank Car donated three ex-military General Electric switchers ( (UTC 1301, 1305) to the Evanston Roundhouse Complex, Wyoming, April 2019. Photo taken 12 May 2019.

Locomotive Shop Moving from Utah to Anniston Army Depot, Alabama, in 2021

The Defense Non-Tactical Generator and Rail Equipment Center, known as DGRC, will relocate from Hill Air Force Base in Ogden, Utah, to Anniston Army Depot in Alabama, the Department of Army announced Sept. 26, 2017.

DGRC is the Department of Defense's sole capability for depot-level repair and maintenance of rail stock, rail equipment, and large scale non-tactical generator equipment. DGRC services the Army's, Air Force's and Navy's nationwide rail fleet. Though physically housed in northern Utah, Anniston Army Depot has overseen the DGRC mission since 2000. DGRC employs 33 civilian personnel; those positions will relocate to Anniston Army Depot.

DGRC is being relocated to facilitate Air Force and state plans to use the space on Hill Air Force Base for development under an Air Force enhanced use lease and public highway use. (Info courtesy Army News release) ©2019 Chip

The Snowflake locomotive

With its clean white exterior UTA 901, GP39, has gained the nickname "Snowflake" from local railfans. A strange twist of irony, as the winter of 2015-16 proved unusually harsh for this snowy engine, when cold temperatures literally froze components of the engine in place, forcing the need for sudden emergency repairs! Snowflake is back at work serving both UTA and the Union Pacific. 13 May 2019 Salt Lake City, Utah. ©2019 Chip

In Echo Canyon and and towards Evanston

UP 7789, ES44AC, led loaded coal train through scenic Echo Canyon as it approached Echo, Utah, 12 May 2019. Train was on UPís Evanston Subdivision. ©2019 Chip
UPís Evanston Subdivision was freshly ballasted with new ties as UP 7789, ES44AC, led coal load west towards Ogden, Utah, 12 May 2019. ©2019 Chip

A Heritage locomotive visits Colorado

David Grothe found this train stopped at Castle Pines. The trailing motor is a NS Heritage unit in Virginian colors.  David Grothe ©2019

On the UP

Blessed with a Savage Loadout coal load move up Soldier Summit at Nolan Tunnels, Utah, 13 May 2019. Four unit manned mid-train helpers included UP 8316 about to enter the tunnel. Spring runoff had the creeks and rivers running fast. Train intentionally blurred to show its moving-youíve seen the stopped versions.  ©2019 Chip

A closed shop

Genesee & Wyoming Martin Locomotive Maintenance Shop sits abandoned since January or February 2017.

Forwarding info-January 16, 2017, was a sad day for Utah railfans. For over 100 years the Utah Ry. has been hauling coal out of eastern Utah, over the Wasatch at Soldier Summit and down to the Union Pacific interchange at Provo. That all came to an end 16 January 2017.

Due to the large slump in the coal business due to low natural gas prices coupled with anti coal government policies the Utah Railway was down to just one coal contract; the haulage of coal from Carbon County to the very large IPP power plant near Delta, Utah, which required only one train a week. That contract came up for re-bid recently and the Utah Ry. was underbid by the Union Pacific. 15 January 2017 marked the last Utah Railway coal train out of eastern Utah. The crude oil and acid traffic traffic has also dried up. So, other than some car storage there is nothing left for the Utah to haul (out of Martin, Utah). ©2019 Chip

At Promontory Utah

Against the odds-song part of "As One" musical production 10 May 2019, Promontory Summit, Utah, 150th Golden Spike celebration. ©2019 Chip

On the Joint Line

On 5 May 2019, BNSF 9246 brings a northbound coal empty over the Palmer Divide as it leaves Palmer Lake, CO behind.  ©2019 Chris Paulhamus


On 5 May 2019, BNSF 6434 eases a southbound coal train down the Palmer Divide as it leaves the town of Palmer Lake, CO. All uphill from Denver to Palmer Lake and now all downhill to Pueblo.   ©2019 Chris Paulhamus


From Utah's Heeber Creeper

Heber Valley RR is building a 5-track building that will hold 15 cars under its roof. 19-passenger cars and one FP9 are moving from Canada to Heber City, Utah, in the coming months. ©2019 Chip Heber Valley Railroad 296, ex-Great Western 296, back in operational condition at Heber City, Utah, 7 May 2019. Unit had been retired/stored at Boulder Museum in Colorado. ©2019 Chip

Some interesting pictures

Cornerstone Ag in Colby, Kansas is enlarging their facility once again. They are building a new 400,000 bushel silo next to the other five built in the last 11 year. They are also starting on a seventh silo. In 1982 Lincoln Grain (now Cornerstone Ag) built a 900,000 bushel high speed load out on the southeast side of Colby. With the completion of these two new silos, their capacity will be 4,600,000 bushels. That is a lot of grain.  ©2019 Larry Dilts Many of the grain facilities have stopped using their own locomotive to shuttling hoppers through the load outs, however, Cornerstone Ag continues to use their own locomotive.  ©2019 Larry Dilts
The UP Colby local has not been delivering much liquid fertilizer to CHS this winter. A two car shipment arrived April 23rd. After dropping off one more load on April 30, 2019, UP 5033 picked up two empties and returned to Oakley. Here it was passing milepost 205.75. Today (May 7th) the local will pick up the last car. Unless shipping costs change, this may be the last movement on the line east of milepost 205.75. CHS has been receiving almost all liquid fertilizer by truck.  ©2019 Larry Dilts The Colorado Springs and Interurban abandoned in 1932 with almost all evidence of it disappearing. A small section of track and roadbed is exposed on Ruxton Ave in Manitou Springs. ©2019 Larry Dilts
check of the M&PP on May 7, 2019 found M&PP 19, 15 and another train at the engine house in Manitou Springs. The shop tracks are still all in place so crews can move the remaining equipment around.  ©2019 Larry Dilts Looking toward the shop, it is evident that track removal is well underway.  ©2019 Larry Dilts
Looking toward the depot it is evident things have changed. One car shed and track has been removed as well as  the main line. The small picnic pavilion has been moved to the employees parking lot.   ©2019 Larry Dilts

An artifact from the steam era

Remnants of abandoned water and whistle stop at Bitter Creek, Wyoming west of Rawlins, WY, May 5, 2019. The steam era required numerous water and coaling stations across southern Wyoming. View looks east. ©2019 Chip

4014 on the road

The ceremonies have started-Utah Governor Gary Herbert with UP Chairman Lance Fritz-9 May 2019 at Ogden, Utah.  ©2019 Chip
The Great Race to Ogden passed through Echo Canyon, Utah, under rainy conditions 8 May 2019.  Fortunately, the cold weather helped show UP 4014ís steaming away.  Other power is UP 844 (doubleheader since solo UP 844 trip late April 2019 was cancelled) and UP 8937, SD70ACe. ©2019 Chip Front Runner passed UP 844 South side Ogden Union Station, Ogden, Utah, 9 May 2019 Nose to Nose- ©2019 Chip


After departing Cheyenne, the 2 steamers and SD70ACe helped were more than enough power for the train to coast up the hill to Speer Junction. Special thanks to the crew of the freight coming off the Denver Line. They stopped short on purpose and the engineer got out and told the hundreds of people there to see 4014 he would not block their view. Very classy and much appreciated move. ©2019 Mike Harriman Amongst the few hundred people that were gathered at Tie Siding, the scene was pretty badly backlit, so black and white had to do! ©2019 Mike Harriman


Steve Char managed to get on the pedestrian bridge without doing anything aggro! The best shot I got at Laramie was only of the Big Boy, as the Northern was parked underfoot.   ©2019 Steve Char 

Bob Crowe saw the special at Borie, WY climbing Sherman Hill.  ©2019 Bob Crowe

UP 4014 Alco built Big Boy approached Speer, WY, 4 May 2019 with the 150th Anniversary Special. The Big Boy was restored by UPís Steam Team. At left, Northbound Union Pacific freight from Denver, CO, on the Greeley Subdivision was held awaiting passage of the steam special. ©2019 Chip

1607 on its way to TTI for testing

Bob Thiele caught 1607 at Palmer Lake on its way to TTI in Pueblo for tests. ©2019 Bob Thiele

4014 on the move

Late in the afternoon of May 2, 2019 Big Boy 4014 made history departing Cheyenne under its own steam. The crew made it as far as Nunn before running out of time. A few more adjustments and tweaks and the beast will be ready. ©2019 Mike Harriman 

On the Joint Line

Chris Paulhamus photographed a southbound cement unit train just cresting the divide.  ©2019 Chris Paulhamus

Activity around Cheyenne

A Big Boy under steam!!! Still hard to believe this is happening, but seeing it in person is something else. This is right before they blew the whistle for the first time.  ©2019 Mike Harriman  A freight was shuttling cars in the BNSF Cheyenne yard, and had a Tier-4 Emission SD70ACe Demo Unit trailing.  ©2019 Mike Harriman
A mixed freight charges under the I-80 underpass making a run for Sherman Hill up the #3 Track. ©2019 Mike Harriman  The end to a great day of trains! A stack train changes crews in front of the Cheyenne Depot just as the sun sets. ©2019 Mike Harriman 

New signals

Southbound Union Pacific 1667, SD40N, led La Salle, to Brighton, CO, local past newly installed signals at La Salle, CO, 26 April 2019. These EMD units were upgraded by UP at the Jenks Shop. ©2019 Chip

A Federal Railroad Administration passenger car visits Denver

While riding an initial RTD Gold Line train, you editor saw this FRA passenger car at the BNSF engine terminal. Looks like a PRR color scheme. ©2019 Walter Weart

The WP Heritage unit on the move

Union Pacific's 1983, the Western Pacific heritage unit, was rear DPU on Ames, Iowa, bound Vestas wind blade supports unit train at Platteville, Colorado, 23 April 2019. UP 7987 South on Denver, CO, bound train used Platteville Siding.  ©2019 Chip

RTD will begin test train operations on N Line

The N Line, also known as the North Metro Rail Line during construction will start test train operation on the first 13 miles from downtown Denver to 124th Avenue in Thornton. When fully built out the line will be 18.5 miles long and pass through Denver, Commerce City, Northglenn, and Thornton. The N Line will have Colorado's longest bridge at 9,533 feet called the Skyway Bridge. While other RTD commuter lines are operated by Denver Transit Partners for RTD, this will be the only line operated by RTD itself.

Taking a break

Found the Joint Line at a standstill 19 April 2019 as the moon set in the western sky. BNSF 6150, ES44AC, was stopped behind McDonaldís on main track one, Joint Line, Pikes Peak Subdivision, Castle Rock, CO. BNSF 8450 had stalled at Palmer Lake. BNSF unit stationed at Spruce had run out of fuel and dumped its water-! Southbound train behind stalled coal load had to cut off power and help push coal load over the Palmer Divide. ©2019 Chip

3Some interesting pictures

Omaha Track is in the process of building a massive industrial park near Eaton, CO, and they had this nicely painted switcher waiting for work. ©2019 Mike Harriman A UP freight with 5 HLCX maroon Geeps waits just shy of the 0 St. Grade Crossing for the local to finish up switching ©2019 Mike Harriman
Mike stopped by North Yard and WP Heritage Unit 1983 was visiting the mile high city ©2019 Mike Harriman

The Western Pacific Heritage locomotive visits Colorado.

Westbound UP 1983, Western Pacific Heritage unit, led train out of Denver, CO, headed for Bond, Colorado, Sunday, 14 April 2019.  ©2019 Chip UP 1983, Western Pacific Heritage unit heads west on the Moffat Sub.  ©2019 Erik Lindgren
UP 1983 heads for Denver.  ©2019 Erik Lindgren

Tickets to ride behind 4014

Click on this link to purchase tickets to ride behind 4014.

In the snow 

Westbound Amtrak No. 5, the California Zephyr running about an hour late, crossing a snowy Highway 72 at Pinecliffe. In the distance, a BNSF general merchandise holds on the Cliff siding.  ©2019 Dave Goss Now eastbound after the passage of No. 5, this BNSF freight has No. 4088 (GE Dash 9-44CW) on the point followed by two visitors from Norfolk Southern; No. 1076 (SD 70Ace) and newly rebuilt No.4232 (formerly NS No. 9106 Ė a GE Dash 9-44CW) converted this month to a GE AC44CM6M. Bringing up the end of the train was another BNSF Dash 9-44CW, No. 7431. ©2019 Dave Goss
BNSF empty sand rolls around the tangent at Crescent, Colorado.  beautiful multi foot snowfall blankets the entire continental divide as far as can be seen, pristine white and quietness briefly interrupted by the sounds of steel on steel.¬ Crewman say this is one of the most beautiful views they experience in North America, the crews of this train would likely agree. ©2019 Erik Lindgren Amtrak Winter Park Express roars out of Tunnel 29 on its way to Winter Park with skiers in delight from a fresh foot of powder. The slopes await!  February 23, 2019 Winter Park Express.  Pinecliff, Colorado ©2019 Erik Lindgren


BNSF empty sand rolls around the tangent at Crescent, Colorado. A beautiful multi foot snowfall blankets the entire continental divide as far as can be seen, pristine white and quietness briefly interrupted by the sounds of steel on steel.  Crewman say this is one of the most beautiful views they experience in North America, the crews of this train would likely agree.  ©2019 Erik Lindgren
Union Pacific MGJNY led by UP #5966 eastbound rolls around through Rainbow Cut at Plainview, Colorado. An overnight winter storm event brought over a foot of fresh powder to the Flatirons. The sun was just beginning to break through the storm when 5966 emerged from the tunnel district.  Union Pacific Moffat Tunnel Subdivision Plainview February 18, 2019©2019 Erik Lindgren

On the Joint Line

On April 7, UP 5388 leads a southbound wind turbine component train out of Monument, CO. This entire train was bladeless but was composed of rotors and nacelles... ©2019 Chris Paulhamus On April 7, UP 5388 leads a southbound wind turbine train through Larkspur, CO. This train consisted entirely of rotors and nacelles. ©2019 Chris Paulhamus

Some recent action

Another study of Palmer Lake in very different light. Repeated visits on different weather forecasted days and plenty of detoured traffic has rewarded us with some less than common photo opportunities. Early spring snow is moving in on the Palmer Divide, low ceiling clouds and low key light, with glass smooth water tantalizes the senses. Spruce Mountain and Larkspur Colorado BNSF Pikes Peak Subdivision 

Union Pacific Colorado Springs Subdivision March 29, 2019 ©2019 Erik Lindgren

Soon these Vestas generators and hubs will power thousands of homes. Today they are moving along the Union Pacific Colorado Springs Subdivision near the Palmer Divide just past Spruce Mountain. On Palmer Lake BNSF Pikes Peak Subdivision Union Pacific Colorado Springs Subdivision. March 29, 2019  ©2019 Erik Lindgren
Number 6 is past the divide and headed downgrade to Denver Union Station near Tolland, Colorado only 50 minutes late. The weather is frightful, cold, and brisk and this train will encounter the full effects if the Bomb Cyclone crossing Nebraska tonight. The valley and trees are coated with the deep remnants of the Bomb Winter Cyclone of 2019 the previous day. The Moffat Subdivision is as usual ready to provide a means for transportation regardless of the weather. Number 6 at Tolland Union Pacific Moffat Tunnel Subdivision. March 14, 2019  ©2019 Erik Lindgren In this shot about 10 minutes after sunrise and on the tail end of a upslope snow event one of my all time favorite spots mostly due to the dramatic depth and feel comes alive with a creepy moody sort of way. BNSF oil rolls out of Rainbow Cut on stage at Plainview out of a heavy snow squall roughly a mile away. Repeated attempts finally yielded the dramatic mountain winter storm mood I wanted. BNSF Provo Lincoln Train Plainview, Colorado. February 18, 2019  ©2019 Erik Lindgren


One of the many flood caused reroutes

All of the flooding in Iowa and Nebraska has caused the BNSF to reroute trains through Denver. David Grothe caught up to the second Boeing train that he saw this morning as it approached LittletonOther reroutes have included container and automotive trains as well as a general increase of traffic on the joint line. ©2019 David Grothe

Real power on the Golden local

It's unusual to see road power on the Golden local but it does happen.  ©2019 Wally Weart

The Tahoe is going home.

The Tahoe is going home the Georgetown Loop Railroad. You editor worked many trains on the  Loop with this car and I, for one, am glad  it will beck at the Loop.   ©2019 Wally Weart

WP Heritage unit in Denver

UPís Western Pacific Heritage unit, UP 1983, handled the North Yard, Denver, to Pueblo, CO, train that typically runs at night down the Joint Line. Denver RTD B Line commuter train in the distance. March 27, 2019 at Denver, CO. ©2019 Chip

EMD 1601 one of the T4 Demos

EMD 1601 one of the T4 Demos was in Pueblo this am. Managed a few shots of it. Came south on BNSF 4604 with BNSF 993. 1601 was trailing. Still on Pueblo as of 1400. Could be headed to the TTC and 4604 set it out in yard and one of the 6ard jobs hooked up to it, 2778.  ©2019 Ben Helsel

A new home for some Pikes Peak cog railway equipment

Number 14,16, and 17 were acquired by GE Johnson construction and are stored in their maintenance storage yard. I heard that they will be used at a new soccer field for VIPs. ©2019 Larry Dilts

Two of the Manitou and Pikes Peak Railway locomotives # 11 and #8 went to the Garden of the Gods Trading Post in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Reports are that they will be modified into dining seating. That will change the interiors dramatically. Hopefully they will maintain the exteriors as historic cars. Photos were taken March 15, 2019.   ©2019 Larry Dilts

Aftermath of the blizzard

Union Pacific front end loader cleared access roads at UPís North Yard, Denver, CO, 13 March 2019. UPY 691 was ready for its next assignment.  ©2019 Chip

On the Joint Line

On  4 March, 2019 BNSF 1929 and a sister SD40-2 have brought the southbound Pikes Peak Local with a meager 2 flat cars to a stop at MP 36 just south of Castle Rock, CO. ©2019 Chris Paulhamus Matt  caught the PPL, at Acecqa with the classic BN paint scheme. ©2019 Matt Adamski

A rare locomotive

Retired ARCOSA Lightweight 208-1, EMD model G8 built 1954 as CN 851, sits ignored along Highway 93 south of Boulder, CO, 1 March 2019. Operation was once known as Trinity Lightweight.

Following the successful spinoff from Trinity Industries, Arcosa Lightweight is the new name for America's leader in lightweight aggregate.  ©2019 Chip

The Ski Train

March 3rd Winter Park Express ski train zips through fresh snow in Arvada, Colorado, mile 9.75, on Union Pacific's Moffat Tunnel Subdivision. The train is running 30 minutes late and the temperature is 3 above, but the skiers will have plenty of powder at Winter Park to enjoy. ©2019 Joe McMillan, March 3, 2019.

Some unusual power 

BNSF 9131, SD70ACe, was an LNG (Natural Gas Dual Fuel) test unit. 9131 was rear DPU on Black Thunder Mine, WY, to Smithers Lake, Texas, coal load C BTMSLP-033a. Train was at South Denver, CO, 26 February 2019.

The BNSF's LNG (Liquified Natural Gas) ACE's was picked up from the TTC (Transportation Center) east of Pueblo, CO, 26 April 2014. LNG experiment began on BNSF November 2013.

Observations regarding LNG Tests-Support of natural gas-fueled locomotives will require significant investments in new fueling infrastructure that are duplicative to established diesel based infrastructure. These infrastructure investments and their associated operating costs must be accounted for in any evaluation of cost effectiveness.

Given the small size of the locomotive market (approximately one locomotive is sold for every 211 Class 8 trucks) and given manufacturers' personnel and financial constraints, it is highly doubtful the builders can simultaneously pursue further improvements in diesel locomotive technology and natural gas-fueled locomotive development. (Info courtesy Chase, N. 14 April 2014, Potential of liquefied natural gas use as a railroad fuel. United States Energy Information Administration) ©2019 Chip

Action on the Joint Line

Matt was able to get out for part of the day on the first Monday of the month, and ended up catching the PPL. Since it had a fresh H3 and Cascade SD40-2 pair, I decided the chase them from Littleton to Palmer Lake. Here are a few shots at Larkspur and Palmer Lake. ©2019 Matt Adamski
A UP train consisting of bulkhead and empty flat cars heads North into the Littleton Trench.  ©2019 Mike Harriman A southbound UP train of Vestas windmill parts train is at South Littleton. ©2019 Mike Harriman

The PPL passes Castle Rock

On 18 Feb., 2019, A pair of H1 SD40-2s leads the southbound Pikes Peak Local out of Castle Rock, CO while the town's namesake rock waves bye-bye. ©2019 Chris Paulhamus

A Warbonnet on a stack train

A southbound intermodal waiting at Englewood with BNSF 699( AT&SF Warbonnet) leading. ©2019 Mike Harriman

The PPL on its way to Colorado Springs

David Grothe caught the PPL coming through Castle Rock at 1345 Monday, 18 Feb 2019. Note that  vandals have tagged the lead motor. ©2019 David Grothe 

Some interesting pictures

Bartlett Grain is nearing completion of their new 400,000 bushel silo at Towner, Colorado. In talking with the elevator manager, he said they send most of their grain east on the K&O to Wichita, Kansas of Great Bend, Kansas. I asked him if they planned to ship on the Towner line to the west when it opens. He said no. I traversed the Towner line all the way to NA Junction. Nothing has changed except the line continues to deteriorate. The new owner doesn't seem to be in any hurry to reactivate the line. I also talked with a UP track inspector who lives in Eads, Colorado. He said the Bartlett elevator in Haswell, Colorado has closed and the one in Eads is about to close. That eliminates any elevators of size providing new business for the Towner line. Most of the grain is being trucked to Cheyenne Wells, Colorado and shipped on the UP.

As mentioned in an earlier report, Bartlett Grain has two trackmobiles in Towner. The one in the foreground is out of service. It was formerly the Haswell trackmobile which was relocated to Yuma, Colorado to work the Bartlett elevator there. When the elevator closed, it was transferred to Towner. The other trackmobile has been at Towner for many years. ©2019 Larry Dilts


On February 4 an empty northbound coal train was crossing Fountain Creek south of Fountain, Colorado on the joint line.  ©2019 Larry Dilts
The same coal train was crossing the Sand Creek trestle on one of the few scenic spots on the joint line near Kelker on the south side of Colorado Springs.  ©2019 Larry Dilts

On the Joint Line

On 2 Feb, 2019, BNSF 8580 leads a southbound coal train out of Monument, CO as it approaches the new'ish Baptist Road overpass.  ©2019 Chris Paulhamus

Action at Cheyenne

Mike Harriman went to Cheyenne recently and recorded  the activity with this eastbound approaching Cheyenne ©2019 Mike Harriman GO Transit MP45AC #676 on its way being delivered to Canada. ©2019 Mike Harriman
Heading west. ©2019 Mike Harriman

On the Joint Line

On 2 Feb, 2019, BNSF 8580 leads a southbound coal train toward the N. Meadows Parkway bridge in Castle Rock, CO.  ©2019 Chris Paulhamus

ex-Illinois Central E-Units (100 & 101) on the move

Forwarding info-101 and 102 were rebuilt by the IC in the early 90ís Iowa Pacific Holdings (Ed Ellis) bought the ex-Illinois Central E-Units (100 & 101) that CN had retired earlier in 2014 because they considered them surplus. Photo by Chip
UP 1601, SD40N, on UP-BNSF interchange track at Sidney, NE, returned to her train with SLRG 100, E8A, Sidney, Nebraska, 1 February 2019.  SLRG 100 expected to arrive Denver area 5 February. Photo by Chip
Iowa Pacificís 100, E8A built as CB&Q 9938-A, ducked under BNSFís bridge at Sidney, Nebraska, 1 February 2019.  Union Pacific was moving the unit to Ed Ellisí operation at Alamosa, Colorado.  Ed acquired two ex-CN E8A units in 2014.  He painted them in an Illinois Central inspired paint scheme. Photo by Chip

At Palmer Lake on the Joint Line

BNSF 7172, ES44C4 rear DPU, moved unit LPG tank cars over Palmer Divide at Palmer Lake, CO, February 1, 2019. Train passed location where new pedestrian bridge was under construction. Photo by Chip

A unusual locomotive on the move

Iowa Pacific's SLRG 100, E8A ex-CB&Q 9938-A, moved west on UP's Sidney Turn (UP Sidney Subdivision) west of Lodgepole, NE, 31 Jan 2019. Hot axle had SLRG 100 set out at Lodgepole, NE, 30 Jan 2019. Unit got some repairs-she might move back east to North Platte, NE, 1 Feb 2019. BNSF 5693 moved to Sidney where it was interchanged back to BNSF. ©2019 Chip

Amtrak in Denver

Union Pacific 7900 met 7-hour late Amtrak train #5, the California Zephyr, with number 14 up front, Prospect Junction, Denver, Colorado, 28 January 2019.  ©2019 Chip

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