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Western Railroad Discussion > Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah


Date: 03/14/19 08:38
Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: 2ebright

Yesterday seemed like a pretty good day to visit the Helper, Utah-Soldier Summit area, so off I go for the 75 mile trip through the Utah mountains. My previous thoughts about this being a good day to visit Soldier Summit turned out to be dead wrong. But first I went to Helper and to my surprise found a westbound UP coal train in the process of changing crews and cutting in helpers. It turned out to be the CWELB9-12 off of the North Fork Branch in Colorado. I decided to chase it west up Price River Canyon to Summit. A note about the weather. Weather was OK in Helper; not snowing, but totally overcast with a very light breeze. This weather would steadily worsen the further west and higher in elevation  I went up the canyon. See pictures 1-4 below:
  1. In the lower part of the canyon near the Jct. of US 6 and Hwy. 191.
  2. Just above Castlegate on the 2.4% grade. Train running in 2x4 configuration. That second unit is UP4660, an SD70M. Never seen a DC loco. on a loaded coal train here in Utah; I don’t know why it was on this one.
  3. Coming out of the horseshoe curve below Kyune. Picking up some blowing snow now.
 
More shots below
 



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/14/19 13:11 by 2ebright.








Date: 03/14/19 08:41
Re: Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: 2ebright

  1. This shot is at the west end of Kyune and near the top of the canyon. The wind is blowing hard now with lots of blowing snow.
As I continued west towards Summit the weather and visibility just got worse the further I went. Due to the poor visibility, traffic on Hwy. 6 slowed and then slowed again to bumper to bumper. Meanwhile the coal train stopped at Colton to cut out the helpers. I finally got to Summit and it was a full blown ground blizzard with much drifting snow and virtually no visibility. My plan was to turn off of the highway at Summit and take a dirt road that is usually plowed down to the tracks. Immediately after making the turn and only about 50 yards from the highway I encountered a huge drift blocking the road. Right on top of the drift was a Union Pacific track inspector in his 4wd hyrail truck stuck fast. He was going back and forth trying to free himself but only getting stuck worse. I was sitting in my Jeep on a piece of this dirt road that was pretty clear of snow. I volunteered to try and give the UP guy a pull to get him un stuck. So I turned around while the UP guy got out his nylon tow strap and hooked up. Due to the large weight difference between my Jeep Grand Cherokee and his hyrail truck I really didn’t think I would be able to move him, but after a hard pull in 4wd low range out he comes! Meanwhile, the coal train goes past and down the hill towards Gilluly. No matter as I would not have been able to get down to the tracks at Summit for a shot anyway. So, I decided to abandon Summit and returned to Helper for some lunch. On the return trip down the canyon I caught up to an empty welded rail train going east also. It must have gotten by me while I was playing tow truck at Summit.
 
     2.        UP 4083 with the rail train, WDVPUR-09,  slowing to a stop at Helper Yard.
 
 
Dick Ebright
Roosevelt, Utah



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/14/19 08:43 by 2ebright.






Date: 03/14/19 08:51
Re: Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: Cumbresfan

Good for you for helping. I'm sure it's not the first time rail fans have helped operating folks who are having a problem.



Date: 03/14/19 10:38
Re: Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: TCnR

Classic locations, looks great in the snow.
Good job.



Date: 03/14/19 11:37
Re: Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: AlcoRSD15

Dramatic photos! Very nice.
- Eric B.



Date: 03/14/19 12:47
Re: Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: callum_out

You're a brave man, we were coming back from the sawmill down in Price some years ago when it
went from a little rainy to full bizzard going over the top. It was tough not getting run into by the idiots
and I was sure glad to get back down the hill in one piece.

Out



Date: 03/14/19 18:26
Re: Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: texchief1

Love that No. 3 shot!

randy Lundgren
El;gin, TX



Date: 03/14/19 23:41
Re: Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: coach

It sounds like you performed a PSR for the UPRR, helping that employee--very nice of you.  

"Precision Scheduled Rescue."



Date: 03/15/19 06:03
Re: Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: bobk

Nice shots!



Date: 03/15/19 15:39
Re: Fun in the snow at Soldier Summit, Utah
Author: jmbreitigan

What an exciting day for you and I bet a well deserved lunch for you.
John



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