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    Posted Wednesday, April 20 2011 at 1530 h MDT
    I meant to get this posted last night, but was so darn tired that I didn't get anything done. The pictures of the Alco PA-1 hulk making its way down the Joint Line yesterday are finally up [here]. - NDHolmes

    Posted Tuesday, April 19 2011 at 1441 h MDT
    The Alco PA corpse-on-a-flatcar mentioned yesterday is on the move. Per a report on Trainorders, it's on BNSF's Denver-Amarillo (as expected) and is over the South Denver interlocking as of 1330h this afternoon. Heads up! - NDHolmes

    Posted Tuesday, April 19 2011 at 1440 h MDT
    After a collapse in the Twentymile / Foidel Creek Mine, Peabody Coal announced production would be reduced, if not stopped, for some time. Thankfully there were no injuries, however. The rumor on Trainorders is 1-2 months minimum, but I haven't found an official source to back that up. The rest is confirmed by an Reuters article [here].

    At the very least, this means traffic on the former Rio Grande [Craig Branch] will be reduced to a trickle for the next few months. The Axial Shuttle should still be running from Axial (the ColoWyo Mine) to Craig, and the there will still be mixed freight traffic along the line. ColoWyo may still load out trains as well - their production numbers look a bit higher than just the Axial Shuttle alone would account for. -

    Posted Monday, April 18 2011 at 1430 h MDT
    Early Sunday morning, BNSF's Laurel-Denver manifest made its way down the Front Range Sub with a very unusual piece of cargo - one of four remaining standard gauge Alco PAs, loaded on flatcar BNSF 585184. The PA, formerly ATSF 59L and now a derailment-damaged hulk, is bound for the "Museum of the American Railroad" in Frisco, TX. It's not much to look at - it's gutted, the side panels are missing, and there's a lot of bent metal from a derailment on Mexico's FNM in 1981. Plus, no trucks. Still, it's an extremely rare bird, and worth seeing just for that reason.

    Its twin - former ATSF 62L - was also rescued from Mexico by Doyle McCormack (yes, the one and only of SP 4449 fame). It's currently being worked on outside of Portland, OR, and is being restored as NKP 190. Doyle and his volunteers have done their usual magic, and she's looking wonderful - more about that project can be found [here].

    I was expecting it to come down the Joint Line today, but it sounds like some carman bad ordered the load in Denver yesterday. So, until they get whatever issue resolved, it'll just be sitting. I'll update this if I hear anything more about movement. -

    Posted Monday, April 11 2011 at 1153 h MDT
    Roger Hogan posted on NGDF that they've laid out the temporary road down to Lobato. Materials are stacking up in Chama, and as soon as they get the temporary road built, they should get going. Photos of the site can be found [here].

    In other news, last week the C&TS in and around Chama was used to film part of NBC's upcoming television series "Reconstruction". It's supposedly about a Civil War soldier settling in a Missouri town during the reconstruction era. Chama was dressed up as a movie set, and some equipment was brought over from Antonito. Again, the man on the scene (Roger, the railroad's official photographer) has pictures [here] and [here]. -

    Posted Monday, April 11 2011 at 1137 h MDT
    While it looks like there aren't many updates going on around here, lately I've spent a lot of time acquiring and scanning things. Most of those just get inserted into the appropriate places without fanfare, but every now and then something unique comes along that warrants a note.

    Last fall, I acquired a Rio Grande Standard Plans book from a guy in Australia. This is sort of the holy grail for modelers, detailing the standard way that all sorts of things were supposed to be built - from water tanks to trackwork to signal hoods to signage. Scanning 300+ legal-sized pages is tedious work, and I'm a chronic procrastinator, so not much happened on it since last fall.

    Last night I put the scanner on the end table, and while I watched a movie I managed to get through probably 75% of the book. I scanned the interesting parts first, and what's left is a mix of tie plate dimensions and other such tedium that most folks won't be interested in anyway. I'll finish it in the next couple of days anyway, just to be complete. Also, the index pages aren't up yet, but I'll post the 3 I have tonight (B, C, and D are present, A is missing).

    So, for those interested, [here it is]. Thank some guy named C.E. Stockton - he was apparently the book's original owner while working for the Grande, given the name inked on the back of the cover. -

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