Right Place @ Right Time = Lucky Shot
How does the expression go? “I’d rather be lucky than good.” In this case, my good fortune helped create a memorable photograph.
The engineer of this Smithers Lake-bound coal train has just opened the throttle, creating a dramatic plume of black smoke just in time for its passage by my vantage point near the south end of the Rosenberg siding.
Lead unit BN 9598 was right at two years old in this shot. You wouldn’t expect a two-year old unit to smoke like this, but non-stop trips to and from the Powder River Basin pulling 15,000 ton coal trains will wear out EMD 710 power assemblies like no other service can.
I never cared for this paint scheme on the BN’s F units, but I do find it quite attractive on these SD70MAC’s.
PS- The UP, ex-SP, Glidden sub track is visible just to the right of the pilot on the lead unit. The BNSF and UP run parallel to each other for about 3 miles through Rosenberg.