Union Pacific Sightings

CIGRS Meeting June 19


Friday, June 18

Late in the day I was driving out to Susan's place when I heard a warrant being given to a southbound on the UP.  I drove to my favorite old Rock Island bridge at the south end of the siding to await the train.  I carry repellant in the glove box of the Jeep for such occasions, since the railroad maintains mosquito hatcheries near the "Spine Line".  While I waited on the train, a deer ambled across the main and siding.

The train appeared at 5:43, with a few cars of pipe just behind the motive power.  On the head end were UP 9603 and 3276.  As the train went under the bridge, I hung around long enough to see an uncovered hopper at the rear.

Saturday, June 19

Susan and I drove to Rick Knowlton's home northwest of Des Moines for a meeting of the Central Iowa Garden Railroad Society today.  A good crowd was on hand for the meeting and to check out the layout, pond and plantings in the Kowlton's backyard.  Rick had a model of the UP Challenger circling the "dogbone" style track plan running along two sides of the yard  The Challenger was an interesting choice, because the real UP 3985 was soon to pass northbound through central Iowa.

That evening Susan and I ended up on the east side of Des Moines after supper, so I stopped by Short Line Yard on the way home.  We arrived at the UP/IAIS diamond just in time to see a grain empty come through at about 7:15.  On the point were CR 7334 and UP 8100.  After this train passed, a southbound was ready to take the mainline, so we drove down to Market Street to intercept it.  This manifest was waiting on the southeast leg of the wye and had UP 4952 and 9101 in charge.  After they crossed the NS diamond and headed on down the Trenton Subdivision, we drove to Carlisle where they were to meet another northbound train.

At 7:45 our southbound came around the corner in the siding at Carlisle.  The northbound, another manifest, rolled slowly down the hill, over the Middle River bridge and past the signals onto the mainline.  Leading the northbound were UP 8544, UP 8540 and CP 5419.  As the train passed, the conductor on 4952 inspected it while the engineer made a quick cell phone call.  Shortly, they had their signal and were rolling up the hill to the east beside Highway 5.

That's It!