Jan 4, 2021
Yet more to consider. I wonder how many years will pass while this game plays out? To what end...?
Surf board turned them down.
Well, not quite what some people are "reading" into it. This was just a request to "fast track" the process. Their headline is very misleading. But that is today's lousy media at work.
Even so, almost everyone seems to forget this line is NOT abandoned. Abandoned may be the most mis-used word in railfanning! Just because no trains are operating, means NOTHING. (Except to vandals, thieves and trespassers.) It has never been abandoned, no such proceedings ever were filed. UP still owns it ALL, every rail, tie, signal, structure, etc, etc, except that portion on the south end. The rest is classified as "out of service". Which means UP can put it back into use, should they so desire. I would not be at all surprised if such a thing happened, quietly funded by the proposed buyer, just to make the whole process happen.
A well written post Boxcab. Although NS's storied Saluda Grade hasn't seen a train in nearly 20 years, it is not abandoned.
Very true. Yet you can find all kinds of videos on YouTube, about Saluda and more, using the word "abandoned freely. The people who willingly believe it are nothing better than ignorant.
Here we go again. There is always interest but when all the chips are down will it ever happen?
I have never understood the concepts behind reactivating the Tennessee Pass line (TP). Without millions of dollars of subsidies every year I don't see how it's viable.
It is a steep grade mountain line, which means it's slow, requires a LOT of horsepower, uses a LOT of fuel and costs much more to maintain.
As far as hauling grain trains, from where to where? It's not going to generate new grain trains because it doesn't serve origin or destination points. That means all the traffic is already moving by rail on the UP. Grain isn't time sensitive so being a couple hours shorter route isn't necessarily important. What matters in price. Unless they can make UP-TP-UP cheaper than all UP, they aren't going to attract customers to route over that line. Having to add extra engines at one end and cut them out at the other end isn't going to make it cheaper.
I also don't understand the whole "commuter train" concept. Running one or even two train pairs a day isn't going to generate a lot of commuters because infrequent service doesn't help them, and then the times that commuters want to ride the train is NOT the same times tourists want to ride the train. Tourists want to ride in the daylight so they can see the scenery. Commuters want to ride in the early morning, late afternoon or at night because that's before or after their shifts.
A long time ago, I think Railroad Model Craftsman had either an article, or at least a product review of a Denver & Salt Lake (D&SL) 2-6-6-0 engine. The author of that piece mentioned "Dotsero" as a play on "Dot Zero" which I think is an architectural or engineering term. He also mentioned another town somewhere along the line called "Orestod" which is "Dotsero" spelled backwards. What's the latest with that town, and was it ever on the TP?
Orestod is the junction where the Moffit route joined the line coming down the Eagle River from Tennessee Pass. It is a little east of Grand Junction.
Orestod is just east of Bond, literally just east which is where the Craig branch departs the MT. Grand Jct is MP449.2 Dotsero cut-off switch is MP342.0, so 107.2 m east of GJ. Moving loads west and MT's east actually does make sense, as westward out of Pueblo it is considered river grade, you can move a lot of tonnage without the need for helpers. As for moving tonnage down TP is would be much safer to split the loaded trains in half atop TP and run down to Minturn in 2 sections, putting back together at Minturn for westward movement. Which is what we did with loaded taconite trains bound for the old steel mill at Provo UT.
The real challenge for moving tonnage west would be Solder Summit, where you will need a bunch of swing help out of Helper up to prolly Colton, if not Summit. If your really lucky, you could hang on to that help down to Castilla.