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  • NEW TRIP REPORT - SECOND JOINT LINE MEET
    Posted Thursday, November 20 2003 at 0838 h MST
    As many of you know, last Sunday was the second informal meeting of railfans on the Front Range at Palmer Lake. None of us stuck around more than a few hours due to rather cold weather and a lack of traffic, but it was good to meet all of you. In the afternoon, quite a few of us followed Gus over to eastern Colorado Springs, where he was nice enough to provide an afternoon of rides in his restored ex-SP MT19 speeder. I've posted pictures from the two halves of the day in a new trip report. Note: I've also fixed a bug with the trip report system that was hiding the third picture on every photos-only page. Oops. If anybody else sees any strangeness with the trip report system, I'd sure appreciate hearing about it. - NDHolmes

  • P811 WORKS NORTH FROM MONUMENT
    Posted Tuesday, November 18 2003 at 2150 h MST
    Amongst other things I did with my afternoon off work was a quick run up to check out the track rehabilitation project on the Joint Line. A P811 and concrete tie crew are currently in the process of rebuilding the southbound track between Palmer Lake and somewhere south of Castle Rock, including two new concrete switches for the junction at Palmer Lake. A P811-S, for those that don't know, is a complete track rehabilitation machine. It literally tears up old track in front, conditions the track bed, and puts down new track with concrete ties behind it. It was used in April of 2002 to re-lay the southbound J/L from Littleton to Sedalia as well.

    Photos of the thing in action:
    Photo #1 - the entire re-lay train, from the south end. Power is UP 3116 and UP 8689 (ex-SP SD40T-2 8319).
    Photo #2 - This modern-day oddity is tacked on the end. This caboose just looks out of place, even if it is part of a MoW set.
    Photo #3 - This is the trailing end of the unit, pulling the old rail off and swapping in new, fresh rail.
    Photo #4 - Another look at the rail exchanger, along with the small shuttles that bring up fresh ties and carry away old ones.
    Photo #5 - Just another look towards the front of the train, showing the cars containing bundles of both old and new ties.
    -
    NDHolmes

  • P-811 ON THE JOINT LINE
    Posted Wednesday, November 12 2003 at 0929 h MST
    The Colorado Zephyr passes along the information that the P-811 will be once again visiting Colorado. Starting around 16-Nov-2003, it will be rebuilding the Joint Line between Palmer Lake and Monument. As most of you are aware, P-811 is a complete track renewal machine - it literally rips up old railway in front of it, reconditions the ballast, and lays down new concrete ties (and possibly rail) behind it. During April 2002, it did the southbound main between south Littleton and Sedalia. This explains the giant pre-fab concrete tie switch I saw sitting in Palmer Lake the other day... - NDHolmes

  • ENTIRE 1977 SD40T-2 ORDER RETIRED, SAVE TWO
    Posted Wednesday, November 12 2003 at 0917 h MST
    The 1977 SD40T-2 order (DRGW 5374 - DRGW 5385) was previously returned to their lessor, GE Capital, several months ago. However, the power-strapped UP signed another short-term lease that returned them to service. Sean Graham-White reports in his October 2003 roster changes that the entire group of 12 units has now been returned once again on 13-Oct-2003. Every unit in this group was either patched or repainted, and included UP 2897 (ex-DRGW 5374) and UP 8630-8638. However, two survive - UP 8577 (ex-DRGW 5378) and UP 8578 (ex-DRGW 5382). Update (10/12 - 0920h): While UP lists them as retired, returned to lessor, that's not actually true. As of this morning, at least 8632 and 8637 are still out on the road. However, I'd anticipate their last trips are coming soon, unless UP has leased them back yet again and we just don't know yet. Update #2 (10/13 - 1800h): Thanks to Jim Harrawood and Sean Graham-White for checking - UP 8577 and 8578 are still active on the UP roster, and have not been returned with the rest. - NDHolmes

  • NEXT JOINT LINE MEET - NOV 16
    Posted Monday, November 3 2003 at 0921 h MST
    Mike Keithly is putting together another meet for interested railfans at Palmer Lake at 1000h on Sunday, 16-Nov-2003. Since it wasn't quite clear before, we'll be meeting up at the parking lot at the north end of the lake, on the east side of the railway. Hopefully it won't be raining or snowing... - NDHolmes

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