It was really kind of a frustrating day east of the Cascades Saturday, 5-26-12. I had seen an eastbound train leaving Kanaskat on ATCS so I was on my way to Easton to photograph it. It was also the long Memorial Day Weekend and I left Renton under clear blue cloudless skies and by the time I got over Snoqualmie Pass there were clouds everywhere! Drove out to Easton and saw they were setting up for a parade through town for the Memorial Day weekend as I crossed the tracks and headed up to Cabin Creek. There was a very large clear patch over Cabin Creek and the sun was shining there. It didn’t take long for the BNSF 7417 East to call out the approach to East Easton. Twice I had tried for the shot looking across the pond and both times failed. This time the scene looked great with the train soon coming into view. About 30 seconds before the train was where I wanted it, the scene turned dark. Yeah, clouds got the sun. Not to mention the lead unit was filthy. Of course the second unit was spotlessly clean. Three times failed.
It was back to Easton just in time to see the parade was in progress. There was no shot at Easton as cars were parked up to the tracks, plus the clouds were moving towards the scene here too. I got down to the parade route and to my surprise, they stopped the parade and waved me across the intersection and I was soon eastbound in I-90 headed for Golf Course Road. Set up there and sure enough, here came a huge cloud over the sun. Back on I-90 and off at Bullfrog. Nice gap in the clouds here. The train was the X-LVWRUG and power BNSF 7417/6927/5629.
The other side of the tracks would have been better lit but I wanted the woodchipping plant in the shot.
I then got back on I-90 and off again east of Cle Elum headed for State Route 10 and some hoped for photos in the canyon between Bristol and Thorp. Another roadblock up ahead, literally. Signs said SR 10 was closed two miles past the intersection and to detour via Highway 97. Whaaaa?
I turned onto SR10 and made it as far as bridge 19.6 and got my final shot of the train there.
Then it was back west for lunch at Cle Elum first before heading on to Easton to see the festivities going on there for the 21st Annual Memorial Day Celebration weekend. Railroad Avenue was blocked off as vendors were lined up along each side selling food and other items.
I managed to get a little Easton history in a photo showing the old NP hotel.
I noticed the UP passenger car there was open. I decided to take a look inside. Not much to see really.
Then it was back to the car and on west to the Stampede Pass exit to see how the road conditions up there were. Got to a mile east of the summit of Stampede Pass when the snow got too deep and I had to turn around.
Heading back down the hill I saw a photo opportunity near the power line crossing and stopped looking northwest towards the Cascades.
Even the road to Martin was snowed in under the trees. I continued out to I-90 and after getting home I checked on the SR10 project and saw they are replacing the deck on a bridge near Bristol with a predicted closure of 5 months! No chasing trains to Ellensburg from Cle Elum this summer! Last summer it was no trains, this summer it’s no road! If it isn’t one thing, it’s something else.