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Elkhart and Western Active line to....?

Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:53 am
by j_c1987
Hello a fellow coworker and I were having a heated debate.....hehehe...about what part of the Elkhart and Western line was abandoned. I thought the line was reactivated past Avon Rd. to serve AM General and a Stone Company. Also storage. The coworker whom lived in Oceola, for most of his life said that track hasn't been active in 30 years. I Thought for sure They had Customers on that line.

Re: Elkhart and Western Active line to....?

Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 1:48 pm
by justalurker66
Google Earth shows a string of cars stored west of Bittersweet Rd in 2016 but the tracks no longer cross McKinley. That crossing has been gone for at least a decade.

Re: Elkhart and Western Active line to....?

Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 3:09 pm
by j_c1987
Correct, It appears that there may be a derail just before current road. He went to INDOT and it is labeled as abandoned/out of service. Now I didn't notice yesterday, but this morning last update was 2005. AM general I believed started getting tankers of something in 2009. Now since then I have seen tankers every so often, but mostly stored hoppers. I wanted confirmation that the line was still in use past bittersweet.

Re: Elkhart and Western Active line to....?

Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:38 pm
by justalurker66
What service do you believe AM General is getting from tracks that are not even adjacent to their property?

The last rail service I saw for AM General was their use of the auto terminal on Mishawaka Rd by the Elkhart Yard. The plant would drive hummers over from the plant to be loaded on trains. The auto terminal is served by NS, not E&W.

Re: Elkhart and Western Active line to....?

Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2019 4:01 pm
by Firemedic Mike
Back in the day, E&W would haul hummer frames to be unloaded near the AM General plant. Not sure when that stopped

Re: Elkhart and Western Active line to....?

Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2019 10:26 pm
by GreatLakesRailfan
j_c1987 wrote:Correct, It appears that there may be a derail just before current road. He went to INDOT and it is labeled as abandoned/out of service. Now I didn't notice yesterday, but this morning last update was 2005. AM general I believed started getting tankers of something in 2009. Now since then I have seen tankers every so often, but mostly stored hoppers. I wanted confirmation that the line was still in use past bittersweet.


Unless major work has been done in the past 10 years or so, I'd be surprised to see anything east of Bittersweet. That end of the line was in bad shape when I lived in the area. I distinctly remember it was used for car storage- there were some issues with some of the youth from the church just north of the Bittersweet crossing climbing on the stored tank cars at the time (by "issues" I mean there were photos of such activity popping up on the internet at the time- no one got hurt that I know of). I distinctly recall the stored tank cars as the kind used to ship LPG/LNG.

I don't recall anything other than car storage taking place on that end of the line between late 2003 and the spring of 2008. The Hummers shipped out of the AMG plant were trucked to a loading point on the south side of the yard in Elkhart. I would be surprised if the frames weren't used as a back haul on the same trucks. My understanding was that the frames being shipped via the E&W were for the RV industry- Forest River had a plant along the E&W somewhere east of Bittersweet.