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La Plata Railfan Guide



by Chris Guenzler



The Depot Inn and Suites in La Plata is an excellent place to stay when Railfanning. This guide will show you pictures and directions to locations I have photographed at over the years. The hotel can be your base of operation and if coming in by train a rental car can be gotten through Enterprise Rental Car in Kirksville. They will pick you up and bring you back after your rental car rental is complete.





Here is a winter time view of the Depot Inn & Suites.





The two ex Amtrak Express Cars have two displays for you to visit when you in La Plata.





The left Express Car houses the Exhibition of Amtrak History, a very well put together display that everyone who loves railroads should come and see.





The right Express Car houses a model railroad.





In the warmer months this Golf Cart can be used to get out to the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point. To reach the path drive the service road to the Red Rooster then go around the left side of the building to the path where the Wabash Trains once traveled and take that path south to the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point.





My all time favorite path is the ex Wabash Railroad right-of-way from the Depot Inn & Suites to the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point.





This pictures shows the first version of the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point which was opened air.





The now enclosed all weather "Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point" with restrooms off to the right.





My name sign is on the new building.





A deck was added to the front version of the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point.





This is the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point as seen from the Southwest Chief with the decking, chairs, ATCS Monitor, Wireless Internet, electrical power and a place of warmth in the winter and shade in the summer.





The Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point in the winter.





The Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point.





The BNSF 4756 East from the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point. The red roof building to the right of the tracks is the La Plata Amtrak Station.





The BNSF 1003 West from the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point comes under the Brown Street Bridge.





The eastbound Southwest Chief can be photographed every day from the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point. The red roof building in the left of the picture is the Trainweb.com building.





The westbound Southwest Chief can be photographed in the summer from the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point.





A winter time view of the decking at the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point.





BNSF 748 East came by the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point during a storm.





The BNSF 7586 West came by in this winter time view from the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point. Photography here can been done in any kind of weather.





Like this picture taken during a summer thunderstorm. Now we will leave the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point and you can walk or drive over to the Brown Street Bridge over the BNSF mainline.





These are the first trains I ever shot in La Plata.





Amtrak Southwest Chief leaves La Plata then heads to Chicago going under the US 63 Highway Bridge. Now let us either walk or drive down Brown Street taking a right onn Benton Street stopping at the Trainweb.com building then walking to the fence behind the building.





BNSF 7560 West came by behind the Trainweb.com building. The next five pictures are just to show you and are taken from an area not accessible to the general public.





Westbound BNSF stack train from the Trainweb.com building.





The eastbound Southwest Chief from the Trainweb.com building. Now back to the locations you can take pictures at.





The eastbound Southwest Chief leaves La Plata for Chicago going by the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point on the hill to the left.





BNSF 4603 West came through La Plata.





BNSF 4437 West passed the Chris Guenzler Million Mile Lookout Point.





BNSF 719 East with 721, 200, 1556 and the ARZC 3901 from the rear of the Trainweb.com building. Now let us walk or drive over to the Owensby Grade Crossing which is adjacent to the La Plata Amtrak Station.





The BNSF 7234 West came through La Plata at the Owensby Grade Crossing.





By the front of the station came the BNSF 7561 West. Now let us go to the north side of the La Plata Amtrak Station.





Amtrak came into the station at La Plata.





THE BNSF 4796 East came through La Plata just west of the La Plata Station.





The BNSF 7614 West came by the north side of the La Plata Station.





The BNSF 4008 West came by the La Plata Station. To get to the next shot take Owensby Street south and make a right on Orrick Street and park to the west of the Grain Elevator.





BNSF 7609 East came through La Plata at the crossover signals.





Amtrak Southwest Chief came through the crossovers at La Plata before stopping at the station. Next we will take you to driving spots for pictures west of La Plata.



Click here for Part 2 of this story