Monday, December 31, 2018

1930s Marengo

Courtesy of the John W. Barriger III National Railroad Library.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Notes On The Wahluke Branch

From the NP Telltale List.

Nov 5, 2002

The old NP track profiles for the Wahluke Slope Branch show the end of the prepared grade at MP 53.29, with a future end at MP 54.75. I don't believe the track was ever laid beyond MP 21.33, which was identified as Sagehill. However, the grade and (the few) bridges were built to the end of the prepared grade. The bridges were all heavy design, and were salvaged and re-used at other locations in the 1980's. Your recollection is correct that the line was well built, as the rail was second-hand 112 lb. welded (with a laid date of 1969), and the ballast was crushed rock from Cactus Pit, which is ballast still used on the mainline today.

My recollection is that the line was not used beyond Basin City from the mid 70's due to a slide in the vicinity of MP 11 or 12, although you could hi-rail on both sides of the slide. The line was removed between Sagehill and MP 11.20 by AFE 83-947, and some time later was removed to MP 10.0, about 1.5 miles west of Basin City. I haven't been over there in quite a few years, but the current BNSF track chart still shows the line in place from Mesa to MP 10, and the current Northwest Division timetable has a reference to the Basin City Stub.


Sunday, December 23, 2018

Grand Coulee Cement Boxcar Unloading Machine-NP Inspection Tour

Excerpt of a longer piece explaining the inspection of Northern Pacific related lines.

Saturday-April 27,1940

Our party, with the exception of Mr.Neish and accompanied by Mr. L.J. Gallagher and Mr.J.A.Clark, drove in Mr. Clark's car from Spokane, Wash. to Pasco, way of Coulee Dam, leaving Spokane at 7:30 A.M., arriving at Pasco at 9:00 P.M.

The Northern Pacific Railway Company handles considerable traffic for the Coulee Dam project, which consists princpallyat this time of cement in bulk loaded in box cars. This operation is carried on from Coulee City to Mason City (Coulee Damsite) by contractor over approximately 30 miles of railroad constructed by the United States Goverment from Odair to Damsite. 

Many units of freight train cars loaded with cement were inspected. An item of particular interest was noted at the unloading platform at Damsite, wherein a remote control electrically driven pneumatic
cement unloading device is used, which works directly onto the boxcar and picks up the cement by a screw conveyor and raises it to the air chamber and then into the near-by silos through an 8-inch
rubber conduit. The device is, in fact, a robot, which moves either forward,backward, or to the right or left as desired by the operator who remains on the platform. It is presumed that this device was especially devised for this job,as box cars only are available and has greatly improved since it was first used.

Cement unloading area at the dam.

Photo courtesy of Jay Kemble.

Photo courtesy of Jay Kemble.

Photo courtesy of the Rufus Woods Collection.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Monday, December 17, 2018

1930s Lind

Courtesy of the John W. Barriger III National Railroad Library.

Friday, December 14, 2018

1930s Irby

Courtesy of the John W. Barriger III National Railroad Library.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

1930s Adrian

Courtesy of the John W. Barriger III National Railroad Library.

This is an amazing view of the Adrian area. The photographer is on the main track, with the house track that goes on the back side of the depot leading to the right. This track is gone today.
The siding is the next track over to the left. The two furthest tracks on the left are just storage tracks today, but they were part of the interchange storage tracks with the Northern Pacific, which crossed this scene on the bridge in the distance.
The buildings on the left of the storage tracks are the Northern Pacific's tiny engine facility, complete with two stall roundhouse, turntable, coaling dock, ash pit, etc. It wasn't in use by the time this photo was taken, as NP passenger trains stopped going to Adrian in 1924, stopping further back on the line at Coulee City before turning around and heading back to Spokane. Three day a week mixed train service continued through 1928.

U.S. Railroad To Coulee Dam

From the "Spokesman Review."

April 24, 1934