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Union Pacific 844 Chase West Colton to Yermo 11/19/2011 Part 1

Railfans Chasing Trains

by Chris Guenzler

Chris Parker along with Tim met myself, Bob Riskie and Bill Compton at my house and we headed out to Pepper Street at West Colton to wait and see which way the Union Pacific 844 would be headed over Cajon Pass. One report was that it would be backing around the balloon track or the one which they did was back up to CP Rancho then head up the northeast leg of the wye leading to the Palmdale Cutoff. Would the train be going to the BNSF at CP Kennebrook or CP Silverwood. While we waited we watched the freight train action.

This yard switcher set pulled a long cut of cars out of the West Colton Yard then backed in later.

The GATX Yard at West Colton.

The yard set then backed into West Colton Yard with that cut of freight cars.

Another power set pulled out to our location then went back onto a train.

A train left West Colton for Bakersfield.

There were many Railfans out on the Pepper Street Bridge at West Colton waiting for the Union Pacific 844 to leave.

The DPU on that UP train leaves West Colton. Now we waited but minutes later we saw steam heading our way, then we saw the rear of our train coming our way.

The train backed towards Pepper Street. I moved to the other side of the bridge.

Here is the emblem for this trip.

Union Pacific 1996, the Southern Pacific Heritage Unit.

The Union Pacific 4-8-4 844.

The Union Pacific 844 left West Colton for CP Rancho.

A power set came out with a CSX unit. We then headed out on Interstate 10 heading east.

We drove by the Union Pacific 844 at CP Rancho. From here we got on Interstate 215 which we took to Palm Ave then crossed the BNSF mainlines and went under the Palmdale Cutoff. We parked and set up for our pictures here.

There were a few Railfans here as well.

The pre train photo location. A few minutes later we saw the smoke of the Union Pacific 844 then heard the sounds before it came into view.

The Union Pacific 844 came and went by us at Palm Ave. From here we headed back up Interstate 215 to Interstate 15 and got off at CA 138. The train took the Kennebook Connection to the BNSF. With the train on the BNSF I changed our next photo location to the "S" curve above the Mormon Rocks. We set up then watched the smoke from Cajon up through Sullivan Curve and then towards our location.

The Union Pacific 844 put on a fantastic show as it went by us here. We drove back to CA 138 to Interstate 15 out to CA 18 which we took out to the bridge over the BNSF mainline and Mojave River at the Upper Mojave Narrows.

Click here for Part 2 of this story