Old 08-16-2017, 07:59 PM   #1
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Default Oregon shortline sightings 7/29-8/1/17

Patrick Phelan and I visited Oregon a couple of weeks ago, making a big run from Portland as far as the Eugene area and back. I am sure there are other targets out there, but our primary goal was shortlines in action, so that is what drove the itinerary. I hope that some of you may find this report useful for future travel plans.

Sightings and locations:

Vancouver, WA:

Columbia Business Center SW1200 CBCX 565 (7573-1! right front) faces north and parked in a publicly available location in the business park. An older GE switcher and a smaller Davenport(?) were shoved down one of the side tracks, buried by cars. There was a security guard in the area, so we did not venture down to investigate what these units were.

Milwaukie, OR:

Oregon Pacific Railroad (OPR) GMD-1 1413 assigned to excursion train from Rail Heritage Center to Sellwood Riverfront Park and back. Unit faces south, and a caboose "leads" on return. Looked like a great family excursion, with good ridership and people enjoying themselves.

OPR SW1 100 and OPR GE 70T 5100 (full SP black widow scheme) at the company shops. Both face north. 100 still has its catenary pickups from Oregon Electric days.

Woodburn, OR:

Willamette Valley Railroad GP35 2503 on the east end of town, unit faces west. A gentleman working on the locomotive stated their other GP35 is at the Portland & Western for work, and the 2503 would do the same upon the other's return. Stated the railroad typically runs down to Pepsi in Mt. Angel on Tuesday mornings.

Salem, OR:

Portland & Western Railroad (PNWR) GP39-2 2302 (all PNWR power is in G&W orange unless otherwise noted) facing north. Salem switcher.

Albany, OR:

PNWR SD7 1501 (faded SP paint with PNWR logo and Willamette & Pacific lettering on long hood) Albany switcher, faces north, captive to this service and I believe the only active SD7/9 on the PNWR roster now. Corrections welcomed, as well as status of the others.

PNWR SW1200 1201 (Shawmut Line red/white/blue) with PNWR logo on cabside. Faces north. Not used the 3 days we passed Albany yard.

Multiple other GP39-2s for which we didn't get numbers as they were down the yard in the shop.

Corvallis, OR:

PNWR GP38-3 2005 (GP35 carbody, very fresh paint). Faces east, works weekday mornings.

Albany & Eastern Railroad (AERC) GP9 1750 at Venell Farms about 5 miles south of town. Unit faces south but is inside a shed.

Toledo, OR:

WAMX GP30 3021, faces south, at least when parked on the east side of the Georgia Pacific mill. Contract switching assignment. I have seen photos of a Watco switcher here, but it was not seen. 3021 is in relatively fresh paint with a generic logo added, not specific to any line.

Lebanon, OR:

Albany & Eastern Railroad (AERC) B40-8 1841 (full AERC paint) and AERC B40-8 5935 (CSX paint) are the primary power on the Hauler right now. 1841 leads west to Albany, 5935 on the return to Lebanon. Either unit can face either direction depending on which branch they take out of Lebanon. 1841 faces south in the shop, but it is inside an electric fence. Don't rest your elbows on that one for an "over the top" roster...

B40-8s 1807 (AERC/south), 5931 (CSX/north), and 5957 (CSX/south) along with C40-8 9252 (UP colors/north) were all in a siding located just north of the depot. Work was being done on the 1807. Everything was nose coupled except for the 5931 and 5957. 9252 reportedly was to be a parts source, but it appears the nose of the unit is being prepped for paint, with various sanding and primer spots evident.

Noti, OR:

Coos Bay Rail Link (CBR) GP38 3877 (faces east) and GP30u 2439 (west) were the power for the Noti (pronounced "No-tie" like casual dress) switcher, which runs to Eugene and back weekday mornings. Other trains run at night from Noti and the south end and meet for a swap at Mapleton. Crew said the line has 8 units now, with the goal of 5 in service at any given time.

Eugene, OR:

PNWR GP9 1801 Eugene switcher in SP black widow scheme with Wilamette & Pacific lettering. Unit faces north or west, depending on which part of the yard it is working.

A one-man RC job with a single GP39-2 and log loads came in while we were pursuing the outbound CBR train from the UP yard. It had a nice Willamette Pacific caboose used as a shoving platform when the train is southbound. Locomotive leads north. Unknown where this one came in from, but arrived back in town mid afternoon.

PNWR road trains noted at multiple locations:

Toledo Hauler: GP40 3001 (east)/RP4ED slug 101/GP40P 3006/GP39-2 23XX/RP4ED 102/GP40 3002 (west). Albany to Toledo and return. Train leaves Albany westbound in the evening, turns at Toledo (with a recrew) and can be found somewhere west of Corvallis around sunrise. On this particular day, that was Summit, OR. Any indication of this train leaving Toledo later on Sundays did not prove to be the case this day, and the schedule seemed more in line with that given for any other day of the week.

Oregon Electric (OE) Express: SD40-2Ms 3052/3053 (SD45 carbodies) Tigard to Albany and return. Only serves the OE yard on the north side of Albany. Does not take cars to the West Yard along the UP main. Arrived mid afternoon (reported to be typical, and weekdays only), swapped cars, and headed back north.

Harbor Turn: Seen passing the Oregon Rail Heritage Center northbound on the UP main with 4 GP39-2s. Did not get numbers.
Mike Derrick

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