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 us. Please contact News Page Webmaster Wally Weart.

Photo specs: 800 X 600, max of 1024 X 800 72 dpi or ppi is standard for the web. GIF or TIF is preferred as these are considered lossless versus lossy  (A lossy compression (JPG) method is one where compressing data and then decompressing it retrieves data that may well be different from the original). I reduce some pictures to 640 x 480 if I put them side by side.

Click here to return to the home page

Please remember that the photos are copyrighted and neither the pictures or text can be used without permission of the owner.

February 3, 2014

A day on the Plainville branch.

UP (HLCX) 3847 and UP 553 were pulling a sixteen car train into Mingo, Kansas February 2, 2015. The undulating terrain of western Kansas is quiet visible south of Mingo. Although headed northwest at this point, the train is an eastbound. 2015 Larry Dilts After dropping off four covered hoppers in Mingo, UP (HLCX) 3847 and UP 553 were pulling the 12 tank cars to Colby, Kansas February 2, 2015. Just south of Altair, Kansas, the Plainville branch crosses under Interstate 70 and the competition.  2015 Larry Dilts
UP (HLCX) 3847 and UP 553 were eastbound at Colby, Kansas February 2, 2015. The train was passing by Colby Livestock Auction which is on the site of the former stockyards. The stockyards were abandoned in 1965 and the siding removed sometime after that. 2015 Larry Dilts  On February 2, 2015, UP 553 and (HLCX) 3847 had completed switching the CHS fertilzer plant near the end of the Plainville branch at milepost 201.75. It was headed west with five empty tank cars, for its return trip to Oakley. The CHS plant switcher was a former Wabash Central ex IC GP10.2015 Larry Dilts

A shiny "new" diesel and a caboose, no I meant a shoving platform.

On January 20, I found this shiny "new" SD-60, a one time Soo Line locomotive and a "Shoving Platform" on the Golden Local . 2015 Wally Weart

Some pictures from Pueblo

Alan Schenkel caught three SD40s that were switching metal goods from the foundry. 2015 Alan Schenkel Three  cabooses or maybe "Shoving Platforms. Two of them look good. 2015 Alan Schenkel

An Oil train on the Moffat Sub

An eastbound (loaded) unit oil train progresses east through Little Ten Curve at Rocky. The back of the train is headed north (geographically) while the front is headed east. Note the buffer car (a covered hopper) located behind the power. 2015 Kevin Morgan Say hello so the SD70AH. What makes this unit different from an SD70ACe? 7,000 pounds! For a long time, various railroads have, at times, increased the weight of certain locomotives to try to increase their tractive effort. Such is the case with the SD70AH. EMD increased the thickness of the steel frame, adding the 7,000 pounds. 2015 Kevin Morgan

Some action on the Joint line

The Divide Palmer Lake 8 Jan 15. A loaded coal train works south in Palmer Lake, CO.

I'm fully aware that that is not a visually-pleasing image, but that's not the point. I took this shot to show the actual divide on the Joint Line between Denver and Pueblo. You can see the coal hoppers (gons?) going up from the right, peaking about center image, and then descending down the Palmer Divide to the left. Nothing like a telephoto to help illuminate the grade!

Beyond the grade, the tracks in the foreground are Main 2. You can follow them south to see where CTC and the single-track main south of town begin. It's interesting to note how Main 2 actually ascends is it comes north out of town, and it's quite noticeable how much higher Main 2 is than Main 1. Where's the top if you're talking about Main 2? That I'm not quite sure the answer to...   2015 Chris Paulhamus

BNSF 9040 Palmer Lake 8 Jan 15. This train was waiting in The Sag north of town for a northbound to clear off the single-track main south of Palmer Lake. 2015 Chris Paulhamus


Starting their day

While driving to work recently, I saw the BNSF local getting under way near Bayaud Ave. 2015 Wally Weart

A prototype for any model

Uniquely lettered Union Pacific 6361 has Union Pacific written out on long hood of unit delivered to Southern Pacific. It was rear distributed power unit on Wash, Utah, loaded oil train that transited Moffat Tunnel Subdivision passing through Rollinsville, Colorado, January 8, 2015 Chip

An BNSF Rotary plow on the move

On January 2, Tom Jurgens caught the move of a rotary plow. BNSF 7434 and 4751 have rotary snowplow BN 972555 in tow as the train exits the Sioux City sub. The plow is ex-Great Northern X-1509. The plow is being sent out for rebuilding.  2015 Tom Jurgens

Awaiting the next work day

On Sunday, January 4, the power for the locals idle away the day at Sandown. The maroon color on the Helm Leasing presents a nice appearance.  HLCX 1057 is an ex UP exx MKT GP38-2 and 1056 is ex MKT. 2015 Walter Weart
UPY 681 and its friend sit next to Frito-Lay's plant. Note Frito Lay's trackmobile just inside the gate.  2015 Walter Weart

A few New Year's day photos

The three photos were all taken on the Kyle Railroad New Years day 2015. Apparently train crews were given the day off to celebrate New Years. Photo 1 With a lengthy westbound freight, Kyle 8041and, 9333 were parked on the mainline on the east side of Brewster, Kansas. 2015 Larry Dilts Westbound Kyle (CORP) 4075 and Kyle 9330, 9345 were parked on the mainline at Arriba, Colorado waiting for a crew.  2015 Larry Dilts
The UP local with UP1418, 1348, and 2169 were parked on the Kyle/ UP interchange track in Limon, Colorado .  2015 Larry Dilts

A cold and snowy yard

Union Pacific 9113, C408, and BNSF 1700 waited in fresh snow December 26, 2014 Denver, Colorado. BNSF 1700 was transfer job working the UP North Yard to BNSF's 31st Street Yard, Denver, CO. BNSF 1700 picked up UP 9113 for trip over to the Denver Diesel Shop.  2014 Chip

Some recent scenes along the Joint Line.

Chris Paulhamus shared some of his photos from his recent outing along the Joint line.

The Pikes Peak Local has the ponies cranked up as it ascends the grade in the open space of Greenland, CO. Not sure where that smoke is coming from...perhaps a traction motor on the trailing SD60M?  2014 Chris Paulhamus The Pikes Peak Local is split apart on Main 1 as they pick up a couple of hoppers off the siding in Larkspur, CO.  2014 Chris Paulhamus
A pair of Norfolk Southern units lead the H-LAUAMS south through Spruce, CO.  2014 Chris Paulhamus

A PV visits Denver

Michael McBride took these photos of a private car at Union Station. It arrived December 22 on No.5. A 1954 Budd Dome-Coach, this car ran on the North Coast Limited until it was sold to Amtrak. In 1995, Rail Adventures purchased the car, and in 2000 add two deluxe bedroom and a porters room.  2014 Michael McBride

An unusual power combination on the Moffat sub

While running some errands, I was stopped by this BNSF train on the Moffat Sub. I took a "grab" shot and it's OK. but not great. 2014 Wally Weart

Some pictures on the Kyle Railroad

Kyle Railroad 9345 set out covered hoppers for grain operation at Stratton, Colorado, December 16, 2014 after mid-December snowstorm. Icy highways made travel treacherous. Kyle 9345 had been throwing snow off the rail line on the first trip to Limon, Colorado, after a snowstorm. 2014 Chip Kyle Railroad 9345 passed ex-Rock Island Stratton, Colorado, depot December 16, 2014 while making set outs. Mid-December snowstorm left area covered in ice and snow 2014 Chip


An NS Heritage unit visits Colorado

Southern heritage unit, Norfolk Southern 8099, departed Denver, Colorado, on BNSF's train to Provo, Utah, via Union Pacific's Moffat Tunnel Subdivision. Train passed Prospect Junction, Denver, Colorado, 4:05 PM, December 13, 2014. BNSF 4056 was on the point of the H DENPVO train. 2014 Chip

A very unusual power combination

Alan Schenkel photographed this unusual power combination with a CN C40-8M leading a faded Warbonnet at North Yard in Ft. Collins  2014 Alan Schenkel  And again at Environmental Learning Center road in Fort Collins, CO 2014 Alan Schenkel 

Some interesting power

An unusual site at Colby, Kansas on December 7, 2014 was Ferromex ES 44 AC 4619 at Cornerstone Ag on the southeast side of town. 2014 Larry Dilts Kyle (CORP) 4075 and Kyle 9330 were pulling a lengthy westbound freight out of the bottom lands on the west side of Colby, Kansas, December 7, 2014 2014 Larry Dilts
A rare meet in Colby, Kansas, December 8, 2014. With a westbound loaded grain train, UP 8173 and Ferromex 4619 were on the siding at Cornerstone Ag waiting for the westbound Colby local to clear the main. UP 553 and 2361 were the power on the four car local.  2014 Larry Dilts

RTD's new commuter rail cars arrive

RTD's first four Electric Commuter Rail Cars at  Union Station. They are sitting short of the loading area on Track 1 (nearest the station).  2014 Michael McBride
Michael McBride shot some pictures of the interiors of the new cars. The cars will operated in semi-permanently married pairs and have both bike and luggage racks.  2014 Michael McBride
2014 Michael McBride The operators' compartment showing the "joy stick" control .The right monitor shows various views from the cameras which are on the car. 2014 Michael McBride

Some more Colorado pictures

A couple times a year, I like to grab a shot of the engine tracks near BNSF's engine house in Denver, just to see how things change over time. newer GE power dominates the scene on this chilly November afternoon.  2014  Kevin Morgan With the recent surge in the rail industry, Class 1 railroads have been pulling out all the stops and reactivating older power. BNSF activated (and renumbered) their SD75Ms and SD75Is, the majority of which still wear the Warbonnet scheme. One such example is BNSF 205 (which, until recently, was BNSF 8205), seen here in Denver on a cold final day in November. 2014  Kevin Morgan
A northbound BNSF manifest approaches the Northwest Parkway underpass in Broomfield, not far south of Louisville. The apartment and condo complex in the background is very new. Ten years ago, none of that had been built and that area was occupied by an empty field. 2014  Kevin Morgan Far from home, this CSX C40-8W is putting in some power sharing miles as it heads north on BNSF's Front Range Sub. This is the first C40-8W that I've seen (well, at least shot) in nearly six years. Highlighting the fact that older power is being utilized as much as possible by railroads right now. 2014  Kevin Morgan

Some nice pics from the Joint Line

Late-90s power leads the way for a southbound coal train at the Academy siding on the U.S. Air Force Academy.  2014 Chris Paulhamus BNSF 9235 leads a southbound coal train through the open space in Greenland, CO and by the famous red barn situated between the two mains.

Amazingly, this is the first time I tried to feature this barn in one of my photos as it's one of the few structures you'll see in the Greenland Open Space. I'm so glad Douglas County has decided to keep this section of the front range in near-pristine condition and avoided the temptation to urbanize. I love this section of the Joint Line!

Oh, this photo contains 8702 horsepower...although 2 of those horse aren't helping much!  2014 Chris Paulhamus

Peek-a-boo! BNSF 9235 throttles through the remaining climb up the Palmer Divide which is just beyond the MP 52 sign post on the left. It's pretty much been all uphill from Denver and it will be all downhill from here to Pueblo.  2014 Chris Paulhamus BNSF 9235 leads a southbound coal train down the hump into The Sag in Spruce, CO.

Well, this was a big miss. I was trying to include both the crazy grade around The Sag while simultaneously showing the remnants of the former crossover of the ATSF and DRG lines...I failed at both. As my fictional spiritual mentor Ron Swanson has said, "Never half-ass two things. Whole-ass one thing." And thus, my lesson has been time I'll be trying to better show the grade through the S-turn down into The Sag.  2014 Chris Paulhamus

Copyright 2014 Rocky Mountain Railroad Club.

You are the to our virtual page