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March 1998 - Page 59


tJ SHELBY

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A lberta

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S askatchewan


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MONT ANA
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Idaho

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DECKER

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1 50uth Dakota I
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Wyoming

B U RLIN GTON N O RTH E RN & SANTA F E M O NTANA RAIL LI N K CANADIAN PACIFIC

RAILROAD S OF MONTANA
N OT ALL LINES SHOWN

DAKOTA, M I S S O U RI VALLEY & WESTERN

CE NTRAL M O N TANA RAR U S

M O NTANA W E STERN

U N IO N PACIFIC

MAP BY CHRIS GOEPEL

u nder dark clouds spilling snow and sleet on their flank. Once the sun went away, the rain returned, which at 35F is difficult to appreciate. O n Monday, while w e were loading up t o head out i n a valiant search for sun, w e caught t h e slightly startling sight of SD70MACs pulling a Trough Train (complete with two SD70MAC DPUs) through Essex. We quickly

took off after it and set up east of Belton where the Trough Train curved around the Middle Fork of the Flat head River on its way west. After we had followed the Empire Builder e ast over the pass, the sky cleared and we enjoyed a warm sunny afternoon identical to those we had the year before. That night, Mike took out his flash kit, and we made night shots of the two helper sets laying over at Essex. Somewhere in m i d - M o n ta n a t h e skies cleared. Late in the afternoon, we crossed into North Dakota while the shadows were very long and the colors super-saturated by the low sun. When the train eased to a stop at Williston, North Dakota, I spotted an orange-and green BNSF locomotive in the yard on the other side of some boxcars. I leaned forward to read its number, and r rec ogn i zed i t as t h e r e b u i l t G P 3 0 ( G P 3 9 M ) recently decked out i n the clas ic colors, not looking too different from the GP30 frozen in time by a GN publicity photo hanging on the wall of the caboose we rented . I t sits in the yard ready, pointing west, and seems to beckon me back to Montana with the promise of great adventures to be had

BELOW LEFT: B url i ngton

Northern helper sets are set off by the dramatic light of a flash kit at Essex. Lighting by M i ke Danne man

R aiiNews o S9

Added December 21, 2010 - Share
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