Yesterday (6-9-12) BNSF ran multiple trains over the Stampede Sub but it was overcast east of the Cascades all day. Today, Sunday 6-10-12 it is clear and sunny over there, and no trains. Looks like there isn’t a single train is lined up between Auburn and Pasco. I was working on some slides yesterday and had this one of Amtrak #7 stopped at East Auburn led by SDP40F’s 548/574 at 2:25 PM. I looked at the date on the slide and saw it was 6-10-77! Perfect to post on 6-10-12.
I dug up to Easton OS page from 6-10-77 and see this train went through Easton at 12:15 PM.
Also shown on the OS page is train #175, the BN 6822 West at 01:44 AM. My notes from that date do show the BN 6468/6822 at Auburn. Other power noted at Auburn was the 1746/1783/1781/845 with was no doubt off the Cle Elum Turn. I saw Amtrak #8 pass Covington at 12:54 PM with SDP40F’s 535/534. I took a picture of it but it is being put onto CD right now.
Looks like #176 was the only road train to go east 6-10-77 and it was early in the morning. And it appears the BN 1750 (GP9) was running on a local which besides the Amtrak train would have been he only daylight action on Stampede, still better than what is going on at the moment up there!
One thing I wondered about was that I have photographed quite a few westbound Amtrak trains stopped at East Auburn but all were from this angle. I never did think to actually get a photo of the small East Auburn depot. Boy, do I regret that now!
After seeing my sister Laurie off at Sea-Tac Airport (both sisters and the 2 nieces are on their way to Ireland for 2 weeks) I checked ATCS around 11:00 AM today to find BNSF’s North Branch dispatcher had lined up an eastbound all the way to Ellensburg. Once I had seen the train pass Kanaskat on ATCS after 12 noon I was on my way east after double checking the Easton DOT camera to make sure it was still sunny over there. It was.
My goal was a photo crossing the Yakima River at BR 30.7 between Golf Course Rd and Bullfrog knowing the tracks swing almost to the south here and realizing how late this train would be on the east side the shot might just work. I easily beat it to Cabin Creek but the sun angle by this time of the afternoon was pretty harsh. I figured I could beat the train from Cabin Creek to the bridge without much problem and I did want to hear the train come down the steep grade over the west switch.
The conductor soon called out the approach to West Easton so I set up waiting with camera in hand. At 2:45 PM the train was at Cabin Creek and I started shooting. BNSF 6689 East comes off the 2.2 past Cabin Creek (West Easton)
Naturally the lead unit was filthy. BNSF 6689/1065/6819 led the empty grain train. Then I raced on ahead to Easton and on to the bridge with plenty of time to wait after crossing the ex-MILW bridge to get to the east end. Finally the train showed up and the BNSF 6689 crosses the Yakima River and curves away towards Bullfrog.
With the highway closed east of Cle Elum chasing the train through the canyon east of there was going to be out. I went back to Easton to check out some new angles along the lake before heading back to town for dinner.