Monday, July 27, 2009

BNSF in North Dakota

On my recent cross-US trip to Winnipeg, I saw a lot of track but not a lot of trains. That changed on July 24 in Fargo, North Dakota. My wife had some shopping she wanted to do in Fargo, so my son and I went in search of trains! I knew BNSF was the railroad to see in Fargo, and after a little driving, we found their yard along route 10 in Moorhead next to Fargo.

We first saw ES44AC BNSF 5806 at rest in the yard.

Next, I saw BNSF 8961 disappearing to the east. I saw it was the DPU on an eastbound coal train leaving the yard, so we gave chase up route 10 to try to get ahead of the train. We found a grain elevator at the east end of the yard and parked there to get the shot. SD70MAC BNSF 8834 and SD70ACe BNSF 9292 were at the head end, parked just before the crossing. Presumably they were getting their orders.
BNSF 8834 leaving the Fargo area

I saw Dash 9-44CW BNSF 4057 just east of the highway, waiting to enter the yard with a manifest train. 8834 finally got underway and I took this shot of them passing 4057 at "WATT".
BNSF 4057 at Fargo

As the tail end went by, I took a little video with my Canon S3.

One more shot of 8961...
BNSF 8961 in Fargo

There was a remote-control unit working the Moorhead yard. It turned out to be GP39-2 BNSF 2859.
BNSF 2859, Moorhead, ND

I had to get back at that point, but I was satisfied to get a few BNSF shots.

We headed north along I-29. The BNSF line parallels the road at many points and would be a great line to railfan. I saw some BNSF maintenance-of-way equipment near Fargo, including a mobile crane, plus a local in a siding and a southbound freight.

Later, I saw another local in the siding at Drayton, ND. GP38s BNSF 2300 and 2285 were at the head of a short train.
BNSF 2300, Drayton, North Dakota

At the border, I saw two CN units on the Canadian side shunting a train. I didn't feel it was appropriate to start taking shots while waiting in line for Customs! :)

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