GDLK Operations

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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby 1TrackMind » Tue Feb 26, 2019 8:03 am

Last I heard it will be march/april before the first train rolls in.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby 12Bridge » Wed Feb 27, 2019 6:42 pm

Stone typically does not move this time of year anyway, as you cant unload it if it freezes.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Ben Higdon » Fri Mar 01, 2019 12:00 pm

I checked out flashearth to see if their imagery showed the stone yard development in Kalamazoo (it doesn't) and happened to notice something odd - there is a train on the NYC North just north of Patterson. Guessing it is stopped due to the proximity to the grade crossing. It has two units at the south end, and about thirty cars, almost all boxcars with six center beams at the end...clearly not local traffic for the north side of Kalamazoo. Has anyone seen or heard of them stashing a train up there? Perhaps its the turn from Grand Rapids and they didn't have room in Botsford. The yard only has four empty tracks in the imagery...if a few of those were out of service I could see them needing to put the train somewhere else to make room for the NS job from Battle Creek or a turn arriving from Elkhart. Or maybe its the south local and they backed it up there to allow a turn from Elkhart to clear BO before going south.

https://zoom.earth/#42.304667,-85.575849,17z,sat
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby chapmaja » Fri Mar 01, 2019 12:23 pm

Ben Higdon wrote:I checked out flashearth to see if their imagery showed the stone yard development in Kalamazoo (it doesn't) and happened to notice something odd - there is a train on the NYC North just north of Patterson. Guessing it is stopped due to the proximity to the grade crossing. It has two units at the south end, and about thirty cars, almost all boxcars with six center beams at the end...clearly not local traffic for the north side of Kalamazoo. Has anyone seen or heard of them stashing a train up there? Perhaps its the turn from Grand Rapids and they didn't have room in Botsford. The yard only has four empty tracks in the imagery...if a few of those were out of service I could see them needing to put the train somewhere else to make room for the NS job from Battle Creek or a turn arriving from Elkhart. Or maybe its the south local and they backed it up there to allow a turn from Elkhart to clear BO before going south.

https://zoom.earth/#42.304667,-85.575849,17z,sat



Train from Otsego maybe? Boxcars would be something they would have. Looking at the yard, I don't see a lot of room to put anything else in the yard.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Jim_c » Fri Mar 01, 2019 11:43 pm

chapmaja wrote:
Ben Higdon wrote:I checked out flashearth to see if their imagery showed the stone yard development in Kalamazoo (it doesn't) and happened to notice something odd - there is a train on the NYC North just north of Patterson. Guessing it is stopped due to the proximity to the grade crossing. It has two units at the south end, and about thirty cars, almost all boxcars with six center beams at the end...clearly not local traffic for the north side of Kalamazoo. Has anyone seen or heard of them stashing a train up there? Perhaps its the turn from Grand Rapids and they didn't have room in Botsford. The yard only has four empty tracks in the imagery...if a few of those were out of service I could see them needing to put the train somewhere else to make room for the NS job from Battle Creek or a turn arriving from Elkhart. Or maybe its the south local and they backed it up there to allow a turn from Elkhart to clear BO before going south.

https://zoom.earth/#42.304667,-85.575849,17z,sat



Train from Otsego maybe? Boxcars would be something they would have. Looking at the yard, I don't see a lot of room to put anything else in the yard.

At first I thought it was 303, but then I realized they would be on the GR&I. I think either they're pulling them out of storage, or putting them in. If you follow the tracks north you will find a plethora of cars. Either manufacturing in Parchment has made a stunning come back, or they're using the line for storage. I suspect the latter is more likely than the former.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby MQT1223 » Sat Mar 02, 2019 2:19 am

Jim_c wrote:
chapmaja wrote:
Ben Higdon wrote:I checked out flashearth to see if their imagery showed the stone yard development in Kalamazoo (it doesn't) and happened to notice something odd - there is a train on the NYC North just north of Patterson. Guessing it is stopped due to the proximity to the grade crossing. It has two units at the south end, and about thirty cars, almost all boxcars with six center beams at the end...clearly not local traffic for the north side of Kalamazoo. Has anyone seen or heard of them stashing a train up there? Perhaps its the turn from Grand Rapids and they didn't have room in Botsford. The yard only has four empty tracks in the imagery...if a few of those were out of service I could see them needing to put the train somewhere else to make room for the NS job from Battle Creek or a turn arriving from Elkhart. Or maybe its the south local and they backed it up there to allow a turn from Elkhart to clear BO before going south.

https://zoom.earth/#42.304667,-85.575849,17z,sat



Train from Otsego maybe? Boxcars would be something they would have. Looking at the yard, I don't see a lot of room to put anything else in the yard.

At first I thought it was 303, but then I realized they would be on the GR&I. I think either they're pulling them out of storage, or putting them in. If you follow the tracks north you will find a plethora of cars. Either manufacturing in Parchment has made a stunning come back, or they're using the line for storage. I suspect the latter is more likely than the former.


The current state of things in the Parchment area is sad. First time I went there I was awestruck by how much of the town was basically dead. I bet it was a hopping place back when the Paper Mills were still up and running.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby GAP » Sat Mar 02, 2019 12:46 pm

Back in the early 1960s I was railfanning downtown Kalamazoo and saw the CK&S switcher job return from Parchment with 42 cars! They called out a second SW-1 to help that much train around the sharp curve. That move meant going from southbound to westbound east of BO tower, then they had to back into Botsford crossing over from the north track to the south track before entering the yard. It used to be a busy place, indeed.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby 1TrackMind » Sat Mar 02, 2019 9:58 pm

Ben Higdon wrote:I checked out flashearth to see if their imagery showed the stone yard development in Kalamazoo (it doesn't) and happened to notice something odd - there is a train on the NYC North just north of Patterson. Guessing it is stopped due to the proximity to the grade crossing. It has two units at the south end, and about thirty cars, almost all boxcars with six center beams at the end...clearly not local traffic for the north side of Kalamazoo. Has anyone seen or heard of them stashing a train up there? Perhaps its the turn from Grand Rapids and they didn't have room in Botsford. The yard only has four empty tracks in the imagery...if a few of those were out of service I could see them needing to put the train somewhere else to make room for the NS job from Battle Creek or a turn arriving from Elkhart. Or maybe its the south local and they backed it up there to allow a turn from Elkhart to clear BO before going south.

https://zoom.earth/#42.304667,-85.575849,17z,sat


Looks like a 501 train staged to go south.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby justalurker66 » Sat Mar 02, 2019 11:54 pm

1TrackMind wrote:Looks like a 501 train staged to go south.

Is that routine?
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby KC8RBK » Sun Mar 03, 2019 12:08 am

David Lang wrote:I concur with NSSD70ACe's observation.

I too have been by there. Tracks in place, but no additional activity that I can tell at this time.

Maybe something will change as we move closer to spring, but if this stone yard was really coming quickly, I would not think winter would be holding it up. Maybe I'm wrong, but we will see.

Gravel trains (trucks) can't run now anyway due to seasonal road weight restrictions correct?

David Lang


Seasonal restrictions aren't on yet that I've seen yet but they probably will be soon. Freight can still move during frost laws but the axle weights are lowered (making it unprofitable most often) and can't drive over 35 mph. Of course that only applies to restricted routes, class A roads aren't affected. Where is the stone yard going in at? I'm just getting familiar with the gdlk system.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Jim_c » Sun Mar 03, 2019 12:19 am

1TrackMind wrote:
Looks like a 501 train staged to go south.



You might be right although that seems like a long way to back up a train of that size. I followed the tracks south, and sure enough, there's a train taken apart in Three Rivers with what appears to be a locomotive sticking its nose out of the paper mill. Without a passing track, or better yet, a double track main, 501 would have to wait. Why not wait in the yard, though?
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby justalurker66 » Sun Mar 03, 2019 5:22 pm

Arial photos taken miles away are certainly not taken at the same moment and not necessarily taken on the same day.

I could see GDLK pushing a southbound train up north if they needed to clear yard tracks for an inbound train - but otherwise I agree that a southbound would simply leave the yard and keep heading south. (I wonder if using the north tracks would help with the problem of doubling a train on the curve? Such use sounds messy.)
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby NSSD70ACe » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:55 am

justalurker66 wrote:Arial photos taken miles away are certainly not taken at the same moment and not necessarily taken on the same day.

I could see GDLK pushing a southbound train up north if they needed to clear yard tracks for an inbound train - but otherwise I agree that a southbound would simply leave the yard and keep heading south. (I wonder if using the north tracks would help with the problem of doubling a train on the curve? Such use sounds messy.)


I’ve never seen or heard of a SB train being pushed up that far. Only thing I can think of is if they either had to clear the yard for an inbound (again, something I’ve never seen or heard about before, but not impossible) or that particular train took a cut of cars up to the plant there before heading south.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Ben Higdon » Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:18 am

Jim_c wrote:
chapmaja wrote:
Ben Higdon wrote:I checked out flashearth to see if their imagery showed the stone yard development in Kalamazoo (it doesn't) and happened to notice something odd - there is a train on the NYC North just north of Patterson. Guessing it is stopped due to the proximity to the grade crossing. It has two units at the south end, and about thirty cars, almost all boxcars with six center beams at the end...clearly not local traffic for the north side of Kalamazoo. Has anyone seen or heard of them stashing a train up there? Perhaps its the turn from Grand Rapids and they didn't have room in Botsford. The yard only has four empty tracks in the imagery...if a few of those were out of service I could see them needing to put the train somewhere else to make room for the NS job from Battle Creek or a turn arriving from Elkhart. Or maybe its the south local and they backed it up there to allow a turn from Elkhart to clear BO before going south.

https://zoom.earth/#42.304667,-85.575849,17z,sat



Train from Otsego maybe? Boxcars would be something they would have. Looking at the yard, I don't see a lot of room to put anything else in the yard.

At first I thought it was 303, but then I realized they would be on the GR&I. I think either they're pulling them out of storage, or putting them in. If you follow the tracks north you will find a plethora of cars. Either manufacturing in Parchment has made a stunning come back, or they're using the line for storage. I suspect the latter is more likely than the former.


Unfortunately the GP Epic plant closed, so now there isn't a single customer left in Parchment. Hopefully someone will move into the old plant and use rail before they remove the NYC north of Mosel.
Looking at the train's makeup, I doubt any of it is storage related.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby GAP » Thu Mar 07, 2019 4:32 pm

About 2:20 this afternoon 501 southbound hit a semi-tractor (no trailer) that was coming out of one of the business driveways east of the tracks. Engines 4009 and 2204 were stopped with a very long train. I couldn't count the cars because I was trying to navigate thru all the fire trucks and police cars and opposing traffic. There were flashing lights everywhere but no ambulance so hopefully no one was hurt. The tractor was spun around and facing northwest. I did see one GINX car which is cotton seed for White Pigeon. At the rear there were lots of centerbeams, some with loads that looked different than normal.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby GAP » Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:52 pm

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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby justalurker66 » Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:44 pm

Do trains sound their horns for the private crossings along Shaffer Rd?
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby 1TrackMind » Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:45 pm

justalurker66 wrote:Do trains sound their horns for the private crossings along Shaffer Rd?

yes
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Jim_c » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:24 pm

GDLK was NB from Plainwell after working Otsego at 7:20 PM. Power was 4225 and 4206 with about 52 cars with many if not most short NS hoppers right behind the power. Couldn't tell for sure if they were covered hoppers. A few tanks, gons, boxes, and standard size CH's made up the rest. Pretty late for the NB run.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Super Chief » Sat Apr 20, 2019 3:03 pm

4009 has been repaired and is running again. Have stone trains began yet?
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