Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Busy Times in Grand Forks

Our family made a quick trip to Grand Forks, North Dakota this past weekend for 48 hours and 10 minutes, to do some shopping. The weather was not fantastic but we made it there and back safely.

On the way down, we saw CN 532 coming into Emerson around 16:50 with three units on the head end (including an SD40 in the middle position) and about 70 mixed cars. I was not able to stop to take any shots.

I managed to get out to do some railfanning on Saturday afternoon (Feb 6). I went up to the BNSF yard on Demers Avenue and saw the Amtrak shack. It is an unremarkable building!
Amtrak station in Grand Forks North Dakota

Things got busy pretty quickly. I saw a train heading west out of the yard and moved back to the Amtrak depot to shoot it... until I realized it was going down the east leg of the wye to head south. I quickly drove over to the crossing and shot it there at 12:30.

It went on and on. I gave up shooting about a dozen cars from the end.

I noticed a BNSF unit shunting in the yard, BNSF 2973. It looked like a close relative to BNSF 2978, which used to be in Winnipeg until very recently. There were two big units by the BNSF shops, one of which was BNSF 5498.
BNSF 5498 in Grand Forks
There were NO TRESPASSING signs everywhere, so I shot this from just off the road. I couldn't see the other unit's number without trespassing.

I saw a short freight coming east into the yard at 13:20, and made an attempt to film it. I haven't looked at the footage yet but I think it will not be good! The train had BNSF 2969 and BNSF 2735 on the head end.

Shortly after that, another train arrived in the yard from the north at 13:30, with BNSF 2731 and BNSF 3037 for power.

On the way back to Winnipeg on Sunday, I saw CN 533 rolling north around Ste Agathe, MB with a single unit on the head end and about 50 grain cars. It was dark, snowy and windy so I did not stop to shoot it.

I look forward to my next visit to Grand Forks!

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