Re: Trainnews - volume 11 - Alex Mayes Trip Report part 1
Date: June 07, 2018 08:03PM
Although the information I received concerning the itinerary of the return trip of the Union Pacific executive train was somewhat vague I decided to head to Harrisburg PA on Sunday June 3rd to try my luck anyway. I was scheduled to attend the Baltimore Orioles-NY Yankees game that day with friends, and it was my turn to drive, however the game was called due to inclement weather. So, I headed north at noon and drove through heavy rain from the D.C. area to York, PA, where it had eased to light drizzle. The final leg to Harrisburg was fairly dry. That afternoon I went to Bridgeview Bed and Breakfast in Marysville, on the Susquehanna River north of Harrisburg, which overlooks the river and has an outstanding view of the Rockville Bridge. Knowledgeable railfans there confirmed the UP Special was scheduled to depart Croxton NJ at 5:30 AM the following morning.
The UP executive train departed Council Bluffs, Nebraska on May 30th and first went east to Chicago. The following morning the train continued east on Norfolk Southern and went to Croxton, NJ, and then Harriman NY. The reason that UP brought the train to Harriman, NY was to celebrate the 1818 forming of the Harriman Bank, which was connected with the later charter of the Union Pacific RR. Dinner was served while the train ran over the Moodna Viaduct up to East Hall, where the power ran around and returned the guests back to Harriman station. This special train was powered by SD70AHs Nos. 1943 and 9082. No. 1943 is specially painted in a striking silver, red and blue scheme with a huge American flag emblazoned on its flanks to honor U.S. Armed Forces.
On Monday June 4th I arrived at Bridgeview Bed and Breakfast at 7:00 AM and waited for the UP special to cross the Rockville bridge. Lots of other railfans there, and we had great time socializing. After about a two hour wait the UP special finally showed up, we took lots of photos, and then the chase was on!
These are some of the shots I got during the chase. The skies were cloudy all day, but we had dry weather.
Alex Mayes Photos and Trip Report
Starting across Rockville Bridge—taken from the viewing platform of Bridgeview B&B—an outstanding place for watching and photographing trains on this bridge.
Another view from Bridgeview B&B
Close-up view of UP SD70AH’s Nos. 1943 and 9082--- taken from the viewing platform of Bridgeview B&B. UP removed its own cab signaling on SD70AH’s Nos. 1943 and 9082 in Council Bluffs and installed Norfolk Southern cab signals for the trip over NS between Council Bluffs and Croxton.
After getting the shot at Rockville Bridge a large contingent of photographers made a FAST run down Route 15 and set up at Sherman Creek In Duncannon. The UP Special got delayed en route by about 30 minutes, so we had a long wait.
The UP Special finally showed up and we recorded this shot crossing Sherman Creek