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Homewood Railroad Viewing Platform 5/19/2018

by Chris Guenzler

I woke up early at the Country Home and Suites in Moncee and took an ice cold shower since this motel had no hot water. I packed the car then checked the Internet before I returned the key, checked out and drove across the road to put petrol in the rental car then visited McDonald's for hot cakes and sausage to go. I then made my way to Homewood and found my destination for this morning's first stop.Homewood Railroad Viewing Platform

In 2007, the Village of Homewood opened a railfan park and equipment display adjacent to Canadian National's ex-Illinois Central main line. The park is located on the east side of the Canadian National line also used by Amtrak. Just west of the CN is the Metra Electric commuter line. Including Metra trains, train counts at this location routinely exceed 100 per day on the 8 tracks seen from the platform. Action includes CN/IC, Amtrak, and Metra, along with Union Pacific and Norfolk Southern trackage-rights trains.

The viewing platform is located just south of one of the few remaining steam-era Illinois Central multi-track signal bridges on the railroad. The south throat of CN's busy Markham Yard is just a few hundred yards north of the platform site. Downtown Homewood offers a variety of shops and restaurants just a short walk from the site, including a Starbucks across the street.

The equipment display is located on the west side of the right of way includes Illinois Central GP10 8408 in the 1990s black scheme and Illinois Central caboose 9426 in the 1960's orange "I-Ball" scheme. An underground pedestrian tunnel connects the east and west sides on the tracks. Do not trespass or try to cut across the tracks. An eight-track mainline is at this park, trains can come in any direction at any time, the electric passenger trains can come quietly and quickly, CN, METRA and local police are strict about trespassing.

The Action

The Homewood Railroad Viewing Platform where I would spend my time this morning. I had my picnic breakfast then walked across the street to a garbage can since none were provided here.

Metra Electric 806 heading north to Millennium Station.

Metra Electric 803 heading south to University Park.

Canadian National 8927 South with Canadian National SD70M2 8927 and Canadian National C44-9W 2558.

Views both ways at Homewood. Next came a northbound Canadian National freight.

Canadian National 2168 North at Homewood with Canadian National C40-8W 2168, Illinois Central SD70 1033 and Canadian National ET44AC 3078.

Northbound Metra Electric 806 seen through the Canadian National 2168 train.

Southbound Metra Electric 805 seen through the Canadian National 2168 train.

The rear end of CN 2168 finally ran by me.

Northbound Metra Electric 808 at Homewood on its way to Millennium Station.

Amtrak Saluki 391 arrived for its station stop en route to Carbondale.

Metra Electric 807 came into Homewood came while Amtrak 391 was there.

Metra Electric 807 departed for University Park and the south end of the Metra Electric line.

Amtrak Saluki 391 started to leave Homewood.

Amtrak Midwest Charger locomotive 4624.

Amtrak Saluki 391 heads south with a buffer car and two heritage baggage cars as Canadian National requires the extra sets of trucks so that the train will properly trip the signals. Next Amtrak's City of New Orleans finally arrived just under two hours late.

Amtrak 58, The City of New Orleans arrived into Homewood heading to Chicago.

My final picture at Homewood before I headed to my final stop of this trip.