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Railroaders' Nostalgia > From Memory
Date: 09/06/18 14:25
Back one time long ago lost to memory,this story.
I had been on a railfan trip to Wisconsin and
Minnesota.I had driven one of the best cars
that I had ever owned.A 1983 Oldsmobile Cutless
Supreme. Two tone green,with matching interior
T top roof,wire wheels,Vinal top,white walls and
best of all the pillow type seats.
As I traveled from Wisconsin to Michigan,I rode the
Badger,then south to Toledo.Just East of Toledo
was a major junction,Vickers.At one time NYC and C&O.
A great place to take train pictures.Trains in all
four directions,going in all four directions.
I was "camped" out near the junction with a video
camera mounted on a tripod,another tripod held
a still camera with a long tele lens.I had a hand held
still 35 MM camera with slide film mounted on bracket
that held a large format B&W film camera.I was ready!
I had the car doors open as well as the trunk.
While doing my thing,I noticed two local cops talking
to each other down the road about a mile away.Well,
I guess I am in trouble.After awhile they drove away.
OK safe for now.
NO,looking to my West I see a cloud of dust heading
my way at high speed.It was the "Lone Ranger" RR
cop in a Bronco! About the same time from another
direction comes another one.They converge on me.
They said the locals said I was down there stealing cross
ties! SURE,I am loading them in my nice car.
I told them I worked for the railroad out of Jacksonville.
Well,they "confered" one wanted to believe me and the other
did not.After the "talk" the one that believe me convinced
the other to go to supper.So they did!
Loading ties in my nice car? Of course the locals did not want
to do anything about me.Easier to call the railroad.
Vickers has changed since then and I don't think you can
get there now.
Date: 09/07/18 09:07
Re: From Memory
I used to shoot at Vickers too. A great, great place. I was actually there for the very last day on Conrail's operation before Split Day. You could literally drive your car into the diamond and park around the southwest quadrant. As you observed, you can't do that anymore.
Date: 09/07/18 11:36
Re: From Memory
When you said you rode the Badger, I thought you meant the St. Paul-Duluth train with that name. Of course, that was way confusing given the context. Finally I remembered the ferry.
Thanks for sharing a wonderful story.
Date: 09/07/18 14:13
Re: From Memory
Back when the SP still ran the San Jose - San Francisco commutes my boss was out on a Saturday conducting some company business. That summer day was hot when he came upon 2 guys stealing new ties from a stack next to the mainline between the 2 cities. He waited until their pickup truck was loaded with as many ties as it seemed to be able to transport. He then drove up, blocking their exit and asked what they were doing. They responded “These are just old ties the railroad is not going to use so we’re taking them”.
He then told them that he worked for the SP, those were new & never used, not old ties and they could unload and restack them now or he would radio for the police. They did not argue and ended up twice as dirty and sweaty as they were when he arrived.