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Hiawatha Pete

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Member since: Sun Feb 9, 2020, 12:30 AM
Number of posts: 889

Journal Archives

By Steam Train over Letchworth Park - Grand Canyon of the East. A Rare-Mileage trip on the Erie Ltd.

Happy Sunday Morning, DU'ers,

For those interested in taking a scenic land cruise through Upstate New York from the comfort of your computer or smartphone, in 2015 my wife & I were passengers on the "Erie Limited": a one-time specially-chartered train recreating the original Erie Railroad train of the same name and pulled by Nickel Plate Road Steam Locomotive #765 on a rare-mileage trip over the former Erie Railroad's now freight-only line between Buffalo and Corning, NY.

The route runs over the Genesee River at Letchworth State Park, sometimes known as the 'Grand Canyon of the East', and along the scenic Canisteo River Valley.

For this railfan, it was a treat to ride not only on track that hasn't seen regular passenger train service in nearly half a century, but to do so behind a steam locomotive as well.

The pics are from my website, https://northamericabyrail.info/

Hope you enjoy!

NICKEL PLATE ROAD 2-8-4 BERKSHIRE CLASS STEAM LOCOMOTIVE #765 ON THE POINT OF THE 'ERIE LIMITED', BUFFALO, NY


GREAT NORTHERN DOME CAR 'PRAIRIE VIEW' ON THE ‘ERIE LIMITED’


IN GREAT NORTHERN DOME CAR 'PRAIRIE VIEW' ON THE ‘ERIE LIMITED’, NORFOLK SOUTHERN BISON YARD, BUFFALO, NY


DEPARTING BISON YARD, BUFFALO, NY


VINTAGE CAR, GRISWOLDS, NY


RAILFANS AT THE STATION IN ATTICA, NY


CROSSING TONAWANDA CREEK, ATTICA, NY


RAILFAN ON ROOF OF HOUSE


CROSSING PORTAGEVILLE BRIDGE, LETCHWORTH STATE PARK, PORTAGEVILLE, NY


OVER THE GENESEE RIVER, LETCHWORTH STATE PARK - 'GRAND CANYON OF THE EAST'


HORDES OF RAILFANS AT PORTAGEVILLE, NY


HORNELL DEPOT


VIEW FROM REAR OF GREAT NORTHERN DOME CAR 'PRAIRIE VIEW', HORNELL, NY


CROSSING A CULVERT, HORNELL, NY


FORMER ERIE RAILROAD, NOW ALSTOM, ERECTING SHOPS AT HORNELL, NY


NORFOLK SOUTHERN BAY-WINDOW CABOOSE, HORNELL, NY


FORMER ERIE RR TRI-LIGHT SIGNAL MAST IN THE CANISTEO RIVER VALLEY


NKP #765 PULLS THE ‘ERIE LIMITED’ THROUGH THE CANISTEO RIVER VALLEY


STEAM IN THE CANISTEO RIVER VALLEY


RAILFANS SHOOTING OUR TRAIN, CANISTEO RIVER VALLEY, NY


REMAINS OF FORMER ERIE RAILROAD WATER TOWER, ADDISON, NY


STATION, ADDISON, NY


PERSON IN CHERRY PICKER WATCHING OUR TRAIN, CORNING, NY


CROSSING THE CANISTEO RIVER, CORNING, NY


NORFOLK SOUTHERN LOCOMOTIVE SHOPS, CORNING NY


NORFOLK SOUTHERN SD40-2 #3491, NORFOLK SOUTHERN SHOPS, CORNING NY


CROSSING A CREEK AT CORNING, NY


ON BOARD THE ‘ERIE LIMITED’, ENTERING CORNING, NY


CORNING, NY


NKP #765 PULLS THE ‘ERIE LIMITED’ FORWARD THROUGH THE WYE AT CORNING, NY


BACKING THROUGH THE WYE AT CORNING, NY


PASSING COAL TRUCK THAT WILL REFUEL NKP#765


FORMER ERIE RR DEPOT, CORNING, NY


IN THE LOUNGE OF SEABOARD LINE SLEEPER-LOUNGE CAR 'HOLLYWOOD BEACH', CORNING, NY


VIEW FROM REAR VESTIBULE OF PULLMAN CAR 'DOVER HARBOR', CORNING, NY
Posted by Hiawatha Pete | Sun May 10, 2020, 11:34 AM (13 replies)

To Yellowstone Park and Seattle on Amtrak's Empire Builder

Hello Again, DU'ers,

In the summer of 2016 my wife & I took a ride on Amtrak's "Empire Builder" from Chicago, Illinois to Seattle, Washington with a stopover in Whitefish, Montana to visit Yellowstone National Park and thought we might share some pics.

I'll be the first to admit that pictures cannot do justice to actually seeing the scenic wonders of Yellowstone Park, and the blast furnace sounds and the sulfur smells of its geysers in person.

However if you are looking for a diversion from news about the pandemic, and are ready to channel your inner Lewis & Clark, then I hope you'll join us for a virtual journey across the Pacific Northwest!

The pics are from my website, https://northamericabyrail.info/

Hope you enjoy!

Chicago Union Station's Great Hall


Onboard Amtrak's Westbound "Empire Builder" departing Chicago Union Station


Chicago Skyline as seen from the train


Passing through Wisconsin Dells


Crossing the Mississippi River near Winona, MN


Onboard the Empire Builder racing through the badlands near Williston, ND


The Empire Builder at Havre, MT, fueled & ready for its haul over the Great Divide.


Great Northern 4-8-4 type steam locomotive on display in Havre, MT


Sweet Grass Hills, MT


National Park Service volunteers provided a running commentary onboard the train. The Empire Builder closely follows the route of the Lewis & Clark expedition. Photo taken with permission.


Two Medicine, Montana. Crossing the highest trestle on the Empire Builder's route


Glacier Park Amtrak Station


Onboard the Empire Builder, roaring through the Rockies, Glacier National Park, MT


Glacier Park, MT


Front of our train entering a snowshed in Marias Pass


Front of our train entering a tunnel, Glacier Park, MT


Detraining at the Whitefish, MT Amtrak station.


By rental car driving south along Flathead Lake


(Edited to add the following three pics of preserved railroad equipment encountered on our drive through southern Montana-for the benefit of railfans commenting on my thread below )

Burlington Northern caboose on display at St Ignatius, MT


Northern Pacific 4-6-0 type steam Locomotive on display in Missoula, MT


Milwaukee Road EF4 class electric locomotive on display in Deer Lodge, MT


Driving along the Jefferson River Canyon


Yellowstone National Park, West Entrance


Antique 1937 Yellowstone tour bus


Silex Spring, Fountain Paint Pot Geyser Basin


Clepsydra Geyser, Fountain Paint Pot Geyser Basin


Old Faithful Geyser, Yellowstone National Park


Grand Canyon & Lower Falls of the Yellowstone River


First time we ever saw a wild bison. Yellowstone National Park


Back onboard the Empire Builder. Station stop at Wenatchee, WA


Along the Columbia River near Wenatchee, WA


Climbing the front range of the Cascades near Leavenworth, WA


On board the Empire Builder rolling through the Cascade mountains


Waterfalls in the Cascades


Bavarian architecture at Skykomish, WA


Onboard the Empire Builder, passing wreck of World War II minesweeper 'Pacific Queen' in Puget Sound


Entering downtown Seattle


King Street Station, Seattle - final stop on the Empire Builder's route


Pikes Place Market, Seattle, WA


Ballard Locks, Seattle, WA


Seattle Skyline & Space Needle as seen from Kerry Park
Posted by Hiawatha Pete | Mon Apr 20, 2020, 08:09 AM (21 replies)

The World's Longest Electrified Railroad

Hello again DU'ers!

About two decades ago, I went on a road trip across the Pacific Northwestern U.S. to photograph what remained of what was once the world's longest electrified railroad, and thought I might share a few pics here for trivia's sake and to offer a little distraction from the somber news about the global pandemic.

The Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul & Pacific Railroad, also known as the Milwaukee Road, was the last transcontinental railroad to be completed across the Western United States in 1909.

In 1914 it also became the only transcontinental railroad to be electrified. By 1927 approximately a third of the route between St. Paul & Seattle, a total of 660 route-miles, was under the wires - making it the world's longest mainline railroad electrification at the time!

For nearly six decades, smooth, silent hydroelectric power was used to power both passenger & freight trains through the Rocky & Cascade mountains of Montana, Idaho and Washington - with a fleet of 116 electric locomotives of five different types ultimately placed into service. There were two electrified sections - the 440 mile Rocky Mountain Division and the 207 mile Coast Division - separated by a 216 mile un-electrified section known as "The Gap".

In the 1970's the Milwaukee Road, facing bankruptcy, became interested in selling off instead of renewing the electrification assets and, in the midst of an oil embargo, made the controversial decision to phase out electric operations in June of 1974.

However the Milwaukee's pulling of the plug on its electric operations was to no avail. The railroad entered bankruptcy, and in March 1980 the Milwaukee Road abandoned its Pacific extension- thus becoming the largest railroad to disappear from the map of the United States.

In my pictures below (originally shot on Kodachrome 64 slide film and which can also be seen on my website, https://northamericabyrail.info/ ) I've attempted to show both what was lost and also what remains of the Milwaukee Road's Pacific extension:
The bridges, tunnels, and rights-of-way; the engines and rolling stock preserved in various museums; the stations that served the passengers and the substations that supplied the power - frozen in time waiting for a train that will never come.

Also - in addition to my pictures below - I've included links to vintage images from other photographers that I found on the web, so that viewers may do a "now versus then" comparison.

Hope you enjoy.

My photograph of a Milwaukee Road boxcab electric locomotive on display in Harlowton, MT. Harlowton was the beginning of the 440 mile electrified Rocky Mountain Division which extended to Avery, ID.


A vintage photograph of a pair of boxcabs in the Deer Lodge, MT locomotive shop - still in revenue service (photographer unknown)


My photograph of a Milwaukee Road shunting locomotive used at Deer Lodge, now on display in Harlowton, MT


A vintage photograph of the same Deer Lodge shop switcher in operation (photographer unknown)


My photograph of a Milwaukee Road wedge plow on display in Harlowton, MT


A vintage photograph of another plow when it was a functioning part of the Milwaukee's once-vast system (photographer unknown)


My photograph of the former Milwaukee Road roundhouse in Harlowton, MT - now a home for 4-legged horses instead of iron ones


A vintage photograph of the Harlowton Roundhouse serving in it's originally intended purpose (John Rust)


My photograph of the former Milwaukee Road engine facilities, water tower & freight yards at Harlowton, MT


A vintage photograph of the Milwaukee Road engine facilities at Harlowton, MT (Michael Sol)


My photograph of the old Milwaukee Road depot at Ringling, MT


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight passing the depot at Ringling, MT (Steve Schmollinger)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road bridge over the Missouri River at Lombard, MT


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road passenger train crossing the bridge at Lombard, MT (Sanford Goodrick "Under Milwaukee Wires" )


My photograph of a Milwaukee Road class EF4 "Little Joe" electric locomotive on display in Deer Lodge, MT
(These General-Electric-built export locomotives, originally destined for Russia & named after Joseph Stalin, were undeliverable after the 1948 embargo of the Soviet Union so instead the Milwaukee Road bought them in 1950)


A vintage photograph of a pair of "Joe's" in revenue service at Deer Lodge, MT (photographer unknown)


My photograph of the east portal of the Milwaukee Road's old Pipestone Pass Tunnel


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight exiting the west portal of Pipestone Pass tunnel (Ron V Nixon "Museum of the Rockies" )


My photograph of an abandoned Milwaukee Road boxcar at Vendome, MT


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Rd freight beginning its climb to the continental divide at Vendome, MT (John Dziobko)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road depot in Missoula, MT


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight passing the Missoula depot (photographer unknown)


My photograph of a Milwaukee Road bay window caboose on display at Alberton, MT


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road bay window caboose in operation (photographer unknown)


My photograph of a Wylie Controller from a "Little Joe" electric locomotive on display in the Alberton Museum
(Named for its inventor, Milwaukee Road electrical engineer Lawrence Wylie, this controller enabled the Little Joe electric locomotives to run together in multiple unit lashups with diesels)


A vintage photograph inside the cab of a "Joe", the Wylie controller's handle is immediately to the left of the two gauges (used to show traction motor amperage and train speed) (photographer unknown)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road depot in Alberton, MT


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight passing the depot in Alberton, MT (Ron V Nixon "Museum of the Rockies" )


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road trestle at Saltese, MT


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight crossing the trestle at Saltese, MT (Chris Bradley)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road's Dominion Creek trestle at Bryson, MT


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight crossing the Dominion Creek trestle at Bryson, MT (photographer unknown)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road's St Paul Pass tunnel at East Portal, MT


A vintage photograph of a set of Milwaukee Road engines running light at East Portal, MT (Bill Hooper)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road's St Paul Pass tunnel at Roland, ID


A vintage photograph of the Milwaukee Road's St Paul Pass tunnel at Roland, ID (Ron V Nixon "Museum of the Rockies" )


My photograph of Milwaukee Road trestles in the Bitterroot mountains, St Paul Pass, ID


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight crossing a trestle in the Bitterroots (Michael Sol)


My photograph of a Milwaukee Road Tunnel in the Bitterroots


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road Tunnel in the Bitterroots (Victor Hand)


My photograph of the old Milwaukee Road depot at Avery, ID


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight passing the depot at Avery, ID (Steve Schmollinger)


My photograph of the site of the former Milwaukee Road yard & right of way at Avery, ID


A vintage photograph of the Milwaukee Rd yard at Avery, ID, with tracks and trolley poles still in place (photographer unknown)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road trestle over Lake Chatcolet. This location was in the un-electrified gap between the electrified Rocky Mountain and Coast Divisions.


A vintage photograph of the Milwaukee Road trestle over Lake Chatcolet (photographer unknown)


My photograph of the former Milwaukee Road yard at St Maries, ID, now in use by the St Maries River RR


A vintage photograph of the Milwaukee Road yard at St Maries, ID (photographer unknown)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road bridge over the Columbia River at Beverly, WA. This was part of the Coast Division electrification.


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight crossing the bridge over the Columbia River at Beverly, WA (Rob Leachman)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road substation at Cle Elum, WA
(These substations converted 100,000 volts AC from the hydro companies into 3,000 volts DC for the locomotives)


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight passing the substation at Cle Elum, WA (photographer unknown)


My photograph of the Milwaukee Road's Snoqualmie tunnel


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road freight exiting the tunnel at Snoqualmie, WA (photographer unknown)


My photograph of a Milwaukee Road trestle in Snoqualmie Pass


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road passenger train crossing a trestle in Snoqualmie Pass (photographer unknown)


My photograph of Seattle's Union Station


A vintage photograph of a Milwaukee Road passenger train departing Seattle's Union Station (Michael Sol)
Posted by Hiawatha Pete | Sat Apr 11, 2020, 04:07 PM (47 replies)

Santa Fe, All The Way! A Steam Train Sojourn on the "Grand Canyon Limited"

Hello Again, DU'ers,

While holed up here in my house looking for a distraction from the non-stop bad news about the global pandemic, I thought l'd share some more photographs - this time showcasing an all-but-extinct mode of transport: the steam-locomotive-hauled long-distance passenger train.

For those interested in taking a virtual journey across the Southwest, in 2012 my wife & I were passengers on "The Grand Canyon Limited" (a one-time specially-chartered train recreating the original Santa Fe train of the same name that entered service in 1929) complete with restored Santa Fe Steam Locomotive #3751 & vintage cars which ran on a five-day round trip excursion from Los Angeles to the Grand Canyon to celebrate Arizona's Centennial.

The pics are from my website, https://northamericabyrail.info/

Hope you enjoy!

First, a pic of Santa Fe 4-8-4 type steam locomotive #3751 in front of the Grand Canyon Depot after arriving with the "Grand Canyon Limited"


Now, from West to East: Los Angeles Union Station


Crossing the Los Angeles River in the dome car 'Silver Lariat' on the eastbound "Grand Canyon Limited"


Dome car dining on the Grand Canyon Limited


Grand Canyon Limited approaching San Bernardino


Grand Canyon Limited approaching Sullivan's curve


Sullivans Curve, Cajon Pass, CA


Panoramic view of Santa Fe 3751 pulling the Grand Canyon Limited around Sullivan's Curve


Alray, Cajon Pass, CA


Riding in the baggage car for a closer view of Santa Fe 3751


Old Route 66


Riding eastward through the California desert


Meet with an Arizona & California Railroad freight at Cadiz, CA


Grand Canyon Limited eastbound near the California-Arizona state line


Santa Fe 4-8-4-type steam locomotive 3751 on the point of the Grand Canyon Limited. Photo run-by at Bouse, AZ


Grand Canyon Limited photo run-by at Bouse, AZ


Dome-chair car Silver Lariat


Dome-sleeper-lounge-observation car Silver Solarium on tail end of the Grand Canyon Limited


River near Salome, AZ


Santa Fe 3751 digs in its heels with the Grand Canyon Limited at Wenden, AZ


Saguaro cactus


Santa Fe 3751 pulls the Grand Canyon Limited through the wye at Matthie, AZ


Congress, AZ


Grand Canyon Limited, Skull Valley, AZ


Grand Canyon, south rim


Lookout Studio, Grand Canyon Village, AZ


Posted by Hiawatha Pete | Fri Mar 27, 2020, 01:30 PM (17 replies)

America the Beautiful - By Amtrak

Hello Again, DU'ers,

Since my prior 'Canada By Train' post was so well-received, I thought I might post some pics from a U.S. train trip.

For those interested in taking a virtual journey across the Western US, in better times my wife & I often traveled by train (and plan to do so again once the current global health crisis has passed) & thought we might share some pics from the route of Amtrak's Train #5 - 'The California Zephyr' - which runs from Chicago, Illinois to the San Francisco Bay Area.

The pics are from my website, https://northamericabyrail.info/

Stay safe & hope you enjoy!

First, a pic from onboard the California Zephyr as our train rounds a curve in the front range of the Colorado Rockies


Now from East to West:

Chicago Union Station


Onboard the California Zephyr, passing Chicago Burlington & Quincy steam locomotive on display in Galesburg, IL


A coyote somewhere in the Iowa plains


Crossing the Mississippi River at Burlington, IA


Neon sign at Denver Union Station - 'Travel by Train'


Onboard the California Zephyr approaching tunnel & flatiron rock formations in the front range of the Rockies


Passing Gross Reservoir, near Plainview, CO


Roosevelt National Forest


Fraser-Winter Park, CO


Fraser Canyon, CO, as seen from the California Zephyr


Glenwood Canyon, CO


Glenwood Springs, CO


California Zephyr at Glenwood Springs, CO


New Castle, CO


Pallisade, CO


Grand Junction Amtrak Station


Onboard the California Zephyr racing through Ruby Canyon


Ruby Canyon, CO


A herd of deer near Green River, UT


Salt Lake City nocturne with Train #5


Rolling through the desert near Elko, NV


Donner Lake - onboard the California Zephyr climbing Donner Pass


California Zephyr crossing a trestle near Emigrant Gap, CA


Rolling through the American River Valley, CA


Passing a palm tree (a big deal for Canadians like me)


Rolling under a suspension bridge over the Carquinez Strait in thick fog


Emeryville Amtrak Station


And now for some pics of the onboard accommodations:

Amtrak Sightseer Lounge Car


Roomette on Amtrak Sleeping car


Amtrak Dining Car
Posted by Hiawatha Pete | Thu Mar 19, 2020, 06:00 PM (19 replies)

Slight difference in relationship dynamics





Cheers,

Pete
Posted by Hiawatha Pete | Sat Mar 7, 2020, 09:04 AM (8 replies)

Change is in the air.



That is all.

Cheers, Pete.

Posted by Hiawatha Pete | Wed Mar 4, 2020, 05:49 PM (13 replies)
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