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Out & About – January 24, 2012

January 26, 2012

Despite overcast skies today, I headed out to see UP’s MKT heritage engine on its latest visit to the Houston area. It was on the QWCEW 21 which was originally scheduled into Englewood at 0503, but delays en route permitted me to catch it in daylight.

It was about 1530 when I heard the DS give an unforseen slow order to  UP 7398 and UP 1988, at Harlem and Rosenberg, respectively.  I immediately headed to Stafford to set up for the two eastbounds.

As I arrived to my spot near the intermediate signal at MP 20.6, I saw an approaching eastbound. As I bailed out of the car, I couldn’t understand how the first eastbound could get here so quickly, especially with the 10 mph slow order that it had to pass through.

As the train got closer, I was able to answer  my question. It was neither of the trains I was aware of, but in fact a third eastbound, a KCS intermodal. It was running ahead of the two UP trains.

Check out the crew’s salutation of the photographer.  (Click on the image for a better view)

KCSM 4566 leads an EB intermodal at Stafford, TX on Jan. 24, 2012.

I wanted a different backdrop for the next 2 trains, so I drove 4 miles west along Hwy 90 to Sugar Land.  The next train, UP 7398, came into view shortly. Interestingly, only one unit on the head end of this intermodal.

A block of “K” Line containers brightens up an otherwise dreary image.

DPU UP 7433 comes into view as it shoves the train across Oyster Creek.

This 1×1 power consist (1 unit on the point and 1 DPU) on an intermodal is a first for me.  KCS likes 1×1’s on loaded grain trains, but I’ve never seen it on an UP train, intermodal or otherwise.

Now that the two opening acts are by me, UP 1988 is up next. Seriously, after 5 years, you’d think that I’d be over the UP’s heritage units. But I’m not.

I moved to CP SA025 (east switch of Sugar Land) to await Miss Katy.  Within 10 minutes, she came into view.

The QWCEW, and its westbound counterpart, QEWWC, are a sure bet to have DPU power. As expected, the DPU brings up the rear.

As the DPU passed me, I noticed it was UP 7605 .  Hmmmm… There’s something about that number. It seems very familiar to me.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. January 27, 2012 8:11 am

    So, I guess there’s a story behind the number 7605??

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