Sunday, July 26, 2009

50,000 Tons of Coal

What does it take to move 50,000 tons of low sulfur Powder River Basin coal? 12 big AC motors, 7 EMD's and 5 GE's.

Mrs. L4T and I stopped in Staples for supper this evening. The ATCS display didn't hold out much hope for moving trains, but there were a few in the yard. In fact, 4 loaded coal trains were staged, waiting for crews, or room, or need, to proceed on their respective journeys towards power plants.

I shot the DPU's as we came into town. Not a lot of angles to choose from, but I managed to fit them all in one frame.

Question, for anyone who might care to offer up an answer: Why do the DPU's on the two south trains have FRED's hanging on their couplers, while the two north trains don't? I have seen this before, and never heard a good answer.

Since the trains were posing, I decided to run around to the head end and shoot the lead power, even though it would be backlit. You can see how common the newer units can be some days in this shot, where 6 of the 8 head end units are ACe's or GEVO's. Must be at least some of the GE's that still have all their turbo blades.

We had supper at the Spot Cafe, across the highway from the tracks, and saw nothing moving while we ate. After supper, we headed back to Wadena, and met yet another DEEX load headed east. I think this one passed right on through town, but we didn't turn around and check it out. That was it for out little Sunday evening outing.


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