Gheringhap Sightings w/e 25/7/2015
Gheringhap Sightings w/e 18/7/2015
Gheringhap Sightings w/e 20/6/2015
Gheringhap Sightings w/e 11/7/2015
Gheringhap Sightings w/e 2/5/2015
Gheringhap Sightings w/e 16/5/2015
Gheringhap Sightings w/e 23/6/2012
Gheringhap Sightings w/e 3/1/2015
Gheringhap Sightings w/e 13/6/2015
Victoria, 3-10 to 8-10-2004
My vacation focus this year was looking at the Wenatchee – Oroville line from Wenatchee to Omak. The vacation blog is here; but this blog focuses on the railroad stuff.
The first stop was in Stevenson, WA, where I waited for a BNSF freight to appear, but it didn’t. Still a scenic spot:
The BNSF is replacing a couple of bridges along the river, so the train likely stopped for that. This is a former Spokane, Portland & Seattle grade, jointly-owned by Great Northern and Northern Pacific, themselves both James J. Hill lines. The SP&S was folded into Burlington Northern in 1970, which itself took over Santa Fe in 1995, thus forming the current operator on this side of the river. Union Pacific runs on the Oregon bank.
A bit further west is Wishram, WA. An Amtrak stop, and home to a ‘HIstoric Locomotive’, according to signs. And in fact, both are as advertised.The station:
Sadly, neither the station, nor the current iteration of the train serving it, the Empire Builder, lives up to the legacy. The Oregon Trunk Rail Bridge just downstream from town provides access to central Oregon, and ultimately tied in with the Western Pacific in California.
A fire train:
MOW ballast cars:
Given the corporate history, it is not entirely out-of-place for a Great Northern locomotive to be displayed, in this case a P-2 class Mountain locomotive:
The 28 locomotives in this class were delivered Q4 of 1923, and were assigned across the system, with many serving on the west slope of the Cascades. These were the largest Great Northern steam passenger locomotives to use Seattle’s King Street station, as the later S-class Northerns had clearance problems. This particular locomotive spent time on the Kalispell Division, as well as Lines East on the Minot Division. The 2507 was retired in 1957, and is one of two locomotives of this class on display; the other is in Wilmar, MN.
The BNSF line to Portland originates in the former Northern Pacific yard in Pasco. It is also from Pasco that the Northern Pacific sent it’s mainline west over the Cascades at Stampede Pass. You can follow the BNSF (NP) line through the Yakima River canyon on WA 821. I made this drive last year, and if you go, bring a fun car. The NP and the Milwaukee Road both followed the Yakima River into the Cascades, on approximately the I-90 route today. The Northern Pacific’s crossing was at Stampede Pass, and is currently in use by BNSF, while the Milwaukee Road summited about 10 miles north at Snoqualmie Pass. The former Milwaukee Road trackage is long since gone, replaced by a trail. I’ve ridden a bicycle as far as the West portal of the 2-mile long tunnel, but did not go through it. You can traverse the tunnel, but will need a good light, and some rain gear to fend off the water dripping from the ceiling.
The first night was spent in Wenatchee, as it was the southern terminus of the Spokane Division 2nd Sub, and the separation between the Cascade and Spokane divisions on the Great Northern.
This article first appeared on greatnorthernproject.wordpress.com
About this website
Railpage version 3.10.0.0037
All logos and trademarks in this site are property of their respective owner. The comments are property of their posters, all the rest is © 2003-2020 Interactive Omnimedia Pty Ltd.
You can syndicate our news using one of the RSS feeds.