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International Railroad Discussion > Guanajuato MX area shots

Date: 01/21/19 00:26
Guanajuato MX area shots
Author: dwatry

My family was recently in the Guanajuato region in Mexico (late Dec 2018-Jan 2019), and I had a few chances for a few quick shots of some trains.  Not great photos, but maybe interesting if you haven't been to Mexico in awhile.  I never know if I should post Mexico shots on International or Western, but International has been really quiet lately so I'll boost action there.

1)  Set of KCS de Mexico power sitting at the GM truck plant in Silao, Guanajuato, on the stub of the former branch that went to Guanajuato city.  This is Ferromex trackage, and the KCSdeM trains get to this location on trackage rights from Celaya and Empalme Escobedo (near San Miguel de Allende).  The branch to Guanajuato is essentially abandoned past this point, though the rails remain in place for a few miles. 
2)  Ferromex units sitting at the station/junction in Silao.  For some reason, this location was overrrun by Mexican Army units and we were soon asked to leave after taking this photo.  The sergeant very politely told us we could return in the evening after 5pm to ask permission to take photos if we wanted.  We moved on - too many machine guns in the area makes me nervous! 
3)  Ferromex GP-38 switching in Irapuato.  Cut of cars on far left had just come in as a train, but we missed the head end.  Note concrete ties in yard. 

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 01/21/19 00:37 by dwatry.

Date: 01/21/19 00:34
Re: Guanajuato MX area shots
Author: dwatry

4)  Same Ferromex Gp-38 in Irapuato.  Note MP gondola.
5)  Ferromex freight southbound from Juarez toward Mexico City as seen from Leon GTO (Bajio) airport.  While waiting 2 hours for my flight to Houston, I saw 4 train movements on this section of trackage, which is more density of train traffic than I have ever seen in Mexico so far!  Too bad it didn't happen on the day we railfanned this line, when we encountered mostly parked units. 
6)  No more passenger trains in Mexico, so passengers are all on the bus system, which is fast, clean, reliable and frequent.  Excellent service, though I would prefer trains!

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 01/21/19 00:43 by dwatry.

Date: 01/21/19 00:44
Re: Guanajuato MX area shots
Author: dwatry

7) Shot of the bus station in Leon GTO to give you an idea of the level of investment in the bus system.  If only this amount of investment had gone into the rail passenger services!

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/21/19 00:46 by dwatry.

Date: 01/21/19 06:38
Re: Guanajuato MX area shots
Author: GPutz

Very interesting.  Thanks for posting.  Gerry

Date: 01/21/19 12:25
Re: Guanajuato MX area shots
Author: mundo

Just as in the US,  the highway and air lobby took over. It was follow the leader so to speak.

Driver unions pushed highway expansion to increase membership.

Do not get me started on how they killed the movement of logs/lumber by rail, all to get more  drivers and sell more truck sand associated services.  Those dirt trails, called roads, took its tole on wearing out trucks real fast.

The rail was so old fashion at the time. 

However Thanks for the photo's of today,  I am now in the process of going through hundreds of slides from Mexico, starting back in 1968.  Even back then the branch was in BAD shape. But we can remember pullman specials going up the branch on three week itinerary's hauling tourists from the US, wondering if we would remain on the track.  My last ride was in a caboose, after  eventhe mixed train came off.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/21/19 12:30 by mundo.

Date: 01/21/19 12:48
Re: Guanajuato MX area shots
Author: CA_Sou_MA_Agent

Here's a couple of Google photo updates of what's left of the train station and yard in Guanajuato.  The street that is still named "Patio de la Estacion de Ferrocarril" is a tell-tale sign.  The yard looks like it's been repurposed into a linear park.  

FNM used to run "Star Service" trains to this town before the country decided to dump passenger trains and run busses everywhere.  This was a line I did not get to ride before it was scrapped.    

I used to love to go to Mexico and ride NdeM's funky passenger trains, and special trips organized by Ed Von Nordeck and Bill Farmer.   The country has changed a lot over the last 20-30 years and there's little incentive or desire for me to make additional visits there.  Thanks for the memories and all your efforts, Ed.  I still vividly remember the trips you ran to the Empalme shops and the Nacozari adventures! 



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/21/19 12:52 by CA_Sou_MA_Agent.

Date: 01/21/19 17:48
Re: Guanajuato MX area shots
Author: dwatry

The apartment we rented was about 2 blocks from the old station so did get to walk by it a lot.  I also used to enjoy riding trains around Mexico in the NdeM and FNM days.  Rode some nice sleepers, had some nice meals in dining cars, and rode some very funky mixed trains also!  Never did get to ride the Guanajuato branch either.

Date: 02/01/19 17:26
Re: Guanajuato MX area shots
Author: inCHI

Very interesting post, thanks for sharing.

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