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    Posted Tuesday, April 22 2003 at 1948 h MDT
    Well, we now have it from several sources - RailAmerica's new San Luis Rio Grande will take over operations on the Alamosa lines (Walsenburg west, basically) on May 15. Thanks to Frank and Ken. Personal Note: April and May are always extremely busy months for me, due to work and other commitments. Once I get through May, things will be back to normal again. At the moment, though, I'm way behind on my email, so if you haven't yet received a reply, forgive me. I'll get back to you eventually. As I'll be gone for two weeks starting Thursday, then home for a few days, and gone again for two weeks, it's only going to get worse. My apologies. Update (5/20 - 2320h): Relax, everyone, the RailAmerica date has now apparently been pushed back to 1-Jun-2003. Rob Pisani was kind enough to share that bit, gathered from speaking with the MPUAA crew last Tuesday. I'm just behind on posting everything due to my travels as of late. - NDHolmes

    Posted Saturday, April 19 2003 at 2136 h MDT
    Last Friday (11-April-2003), I went to take a look at operations in Alamosa, CO, and around the rest of the San Luis Valley. What I found was a very late, all DRGW and SP-powered morning MPUAA, two Grande-powered locals, and new signs of life on the extreme west end from South Fork and beyond to Creede. The light wasn't the greatest, but since all UP operations in the valley may stop soon (with the sale to RailAmerica being a super-rumor at this point), any opportunity is a good one. Be sure to read the intro and abstract and then hit the Read More link at the bottom to get to the photos. Enjoy! - NDHolmes

    Posted Monday, April 14 2003 at 1121 h MDT
    At about 0930h this morning (Monday, 14-Apr-2003), Amtrak 5, the westbound California Zephyr, hit a 6-ft. rock on the Moffat. Nothing derailed and there were no injuries to passengers, but Amtrak 193 sustained moderate damage. Thanks to the Union Pacific list for the original message, and Paul B. and Steven B. for cross-posting it to the DRGW list. - NDHolmes

    Posted Tuesday, April 8 2003 at 2230 h MDT
    Lee Perkins of Glenwood Springs was out after today's UP passenger special on the Moffat. He was nice enough to send in a few photos from today between West Grizzly (in Glenwood Canyon) and State Bridge (just east of Bond, CO). The train, returning to Council Bluffs, IA, under the symbol SSCCB-07, was lead by UP SD70Ms 4579 and 4798. Per Lee's notes, it passed West Grizzly at 1149h on 8-Apr, the big Horseshoe Curve 1248h, Bond at 1313h, and then finally State Bridge at 1338h. Enjoy, and thanks to Lee from myself and I'm sure many of you.

    Photo #1 - The eastbound arrives at West Grizzly Creek
    Photo #2 - Coming through the OS at West Dell, CO
    Photo #3 - Rounding the Dell horseshow - best shot of the day!
    Photo #4 - The train passes through Center Bond
    Photo #5 - Another shot a few seconds later
    Photo #6 - Along the Colorado River near State Bridge
    Photo #7 - And finally, about to pass under CO 131 at State Bridge -

    Posted Monday, April 7 2003 at 1648 h MDT
    According to Jim Belmont, an eastbound UP passenger special went onto the former Rio Grande system at Salt Lake around 1230h today (7-Apr-2003). Power consists of SD70Ms UP 4579 and UP 4798, followed by 9 business cars. No idea what the purpose of this one is - last I'd heard it was supposed to return through Wyoming, not over the former Rio Grande. Update (1700h - 7-Apr): It's returning to Council Bluffs, so it is the train I was expecting to go through Wyoming. It's apparently overnighting in Grand Junction, and should depart eastward tomorrow (8-Apr-2003) around 1030h. Last seen at Mounds, UT, at around 1620h. As usual, if anybody gets photos of this one, I'd greatly appreciate one to post. - NDHolmes

    Posted Sunday, April 6 2003 at 1700 h MDT
    The Utah MK5000Cs are no more. Boise Locomotive is in the process of rebuilding them out of old Union Pacific SD50s. The new unit, to be known as an MK50-3, will have a 16-645F3B prime mover, an SD50 long hood from the air filter to the back, and the MK5000C cab and dynamic brake housing. They'll also get a new control system based on a Q-tron QES-3 controller. This creation will be rated at 3600hp, and should be on Utah rails by June 2003. The latest word is that one will appear in G&W colors, while there's a good chance the remaining 5 will continue on in Utah colors. Thanks to Ryan Ballard and the Loconotes list for the information. - NDHolmes

    Posted Saturday, April 5 2003 at 2331 h MST
    Apparently DRGW 5507 was in Denver today, and left this afternoon for Green River, WY, on the daily MNYGR. Chuck Doolittle caught up with it this afternoon at Platteville on its trip north, and has photos posted over here. Hopefully it will stay in the area and return on a future MGRNY. - NDHolmes

    Posted Thursday, April 3 2003 at 0751 h MST
    Several people have now confirmed the sale to RailAmerica, even though little/nothing has been said officially. The rumor mill has now coughed up a sale date - 1-May-2003, less than a month away. If you want photos of the UP in the San Luis Valley, now's the time to get them. - NDHolmes

    Posted Wednesday, April 2 2003 at 2205 h MST
    David Baer was nice enough to send me a few of his photos of ex-Grande power now roaming the Wheeling & Lake Erie out in Ohio and Pennsylvania. I've posted his photos over in the Contributed Photos gallery here. Thanks to David, since I'll probably not ever make it out (nor will many of you) to see these units working before they get another coat of paint.

    In other D&RGW power news, RJ Corman has apparently acquired t-motors 5353, 5361, 5372, and 5409 from the Yermo, CA, deadline. Trainorders news reported about a week ago that they'll be heading to the Clearfield, PA, line after a stop at the shops for painting and repairs. -

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