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Railroaders' Nostalgia > Railfan Helicopter


Date: 05/13/19 21:52
Railfan Helicopter
Author: OliveHeights

With the mention of helicopters following the UP 4014 recently it reminded me of a long ago encounter.

Sometime back in the mid 1980’s when I was dispatching second trick on the Cajon Sub in San Bernardino the switchboard operator forwarded a phone call to my desk.  The caller said he was a judge from Eureka, Ca. and was holding a trial that had a change of venue to San Bernardino.  He was a railfan (he didn’t use that term) and the San Bernardino County Sheriff was going to take him up in their helicopter on Saturday to shoot photos of trains on Cajon Pass.  

The judge told me he would like to get a lineup of trains Saturday morning before he took off.  I told him I wouldn’t be there Saturday morning, but I gave him the Assistant Chief’s number and told him he would be happy to give him a lineup.  The judge was very gracious and thanked me.  I left a note for the day ACD and told him a judge would be calling for a lineup Saturday morning and hoped the ACD wouldn’t be too upset with me.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/13/19 21:54 by OliveHeights.



Date: 05/21/19 22:08
Re: Railfan Helicopter
Author: E25

Back in the '70s, there were a few SBCS Deputies who were railfans.  It didn't take long for me to discover that it was "helpful" to have one along (off-duty) riding shotgun while I roamed the backroads of Cajon and Tehachapi looking for photo ops.   'Never thought about the helicopter, though.  Next time... ha ha.

Greg Stadter
Phoenix, AZ



Date: 05/22/19 20:50
Re: Railfan Helicopter
Author: OldPorter

Speaking of helicopters, we saw an interesting operation going on at Cajon siding last Saturday (May 18) while driving home
from the festivities at Promontory Point, UT. About midday we took a driving break there at the deadend road by Sulivan's Curve
and witnessed a small copter take off from the material storage area at Cajon, fly up to Summit, hover there for about 5 minutes
then return to Cajon. A couple of safety vest (BNSF, most likely) guys popped out of the chopper. Have no idea what that was all
about, but I've never seen anything like it here before on innumerable visits. I'm guessing some kind of track issues that needed
aerial observation? It was a very small, two person chopper, like the kind we used to see in James Bond movies. (-:



Date: 05/22/19 23:35
Re: Railfan Helicopter
Author: PHall

OldPorter Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Speaking of helicopters, we saw an interesting
> operation going on at Cajon siding last Saturday
> (May 18) while driving home
> from the festivities at Promontory Point, UT.
> About midday we took a driving break there at the
> deadend road by Sulivan's Curve
> and witnessed a small copter take off from the
> material storage area at Cajon, fly up to Summit,
> hover there for about 5 minutes
> then return to Cajon. A couple of safety vest
> (BNSF, most likely) guys popped out of the
> chopper. Have no idea what that was all
> about, but I've never seen anything like it here
> before on innumerable visits. I'm guessing some
> kind of track issues that needed
> aerial observation? It was a very small, two
> person chopper, like the kind we used to see in
> James Bond movies. (-:

Most likely a Robertson R-22. Very popular small 2 seat training helicopter.



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