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Nostalgia & History > Coal, corn and the Colorado plains


Date: 01/14/22 06:15
Coal, corn and the Colorado plains
Author: valmont

It was 8/12/79 when I got this loaded coal train heading west near Brush CO ... not a rare shot then as coal trains seemed to be everywhere. It's very possible that this one would 'take a left' at Denver and head south to join the steady parade of coal trains (loads and empties) on the Joint Line.

When you look at a map of this route from the coal fields of Wyoming it sure doesn't look like a 'direct' route. However this route avoided having long coal trains going back and forth, along the then C&S, which went right through many northern Front Range cities among which were Fort Collins, Loveland, Longmont, Boulder, Louisville and Broomfield ... and it sure would have made taking pictures from 'The Perch' in Cheyenne more challenging ; ^ )




Date: 01/14/22 06:21
Re: Coal, corn and the Colorado plains
Author: train1275

Nice shot and it brings back a few memories of that era in time. I recall sometime about 1977? before the coal really started to flow that BN sent an engineering team to 
the Windsor area to scope out the feasibility of routing the trains from Fort Collins to Windsor to the GW line to Loveland. The idea was to avoid Mason Street.  Obvioulsy didn't fly, but they looked at it with the thought of a massive rebuild of those lines.



Date: 01/14/22 07:02
Re: Coal, corn and the Colorado plains
Author: dan

they also thought about running on the UP



Date: 01/14/22 07:41
Re: Coal, corn and the Colorado plains
Author: Conch

The good old days. As you noted, these were once so common we hardly gave them a second look.  This appears to be a Houston load bound for Smithers Lake, TX and will definitely head south out of Denver.  It has a 'standard' Alliance power set of the day,  with the motors in an EWEEW configuration.  This was done primarily for the Central Corridor loads.  5 motors would do the mine turn and the two lead units would be removed at Alliance.   The 3 trailing motors then  handled the trip to Lincoln and beyond with the load.  Of course, the grades on the Southern Corridor required much more power as we see here.  In two years, an 'add on' motor would be tacked on in Denver for the trip south. Thanks for the reminder..



Date: 01/14/22 08:00
Re: Coal, corn and the Colorado plains
Author: valmont

Conch Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> The good old days. As you noted, these were once
> so common we hardly gave them a second look. 
> This appears to be a Houston load bound for
> Smithers Lake, TX and will definitely head south
> out of Denver.  It has a 'standard' Alliance
> power set of the day,  with the motors in an
> EWEEW configuration.  This was done primarily for
> the Central Corridor loads.  5 motors would do
> the mine turn and the two lead units would be
> removed at Alliance.   The 3 trailing motors
> then  handled the trip to Lincoln and beyond with
> the load.  Of course, the grades on the Southern
> Corridor required much more power as we see
> here.  In two years, an 'add on' motor would be
> tacked on in Denver for the trip south. Thanks for
> the reminder.

And thanks for that information!!



Date: 01/14/22 08:27
Re: Coal, corn and the Colorado plains
Author: perklocal

Nice one !  Loved the Era of the 5-Packs.



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