Visit to BNSF Raceway
June 19, 2010

Photos by J. David Ingles

Where else to spend a gorgeous afternoon trackside but on the BNSF Raceway? This was Sat., June 19. I was to drive to Naperville, Ill., to spend the night preparatory to picking up Rick Moser at his home on Sunday morning to drive east to the NRHS convention. He and Jane had a concert to attend Saturday night. The day was nice, and since I was packed, I drove down midday and spent the afternoon working west on the BNSF from Highlands station in Hinsdale to Naperville. I arrived at Highlands, right off the Tri-State Tollway, in time to get Amtrak #5, though he was coming too fast for a digital coming-on view plus my required 35mm slide. I worked my way west, and shot at 6 locations: Highlands, Westmont, Downers Grove Fairview, D.G. Belmont Ave., and Naperville. I got about 22 trains — 4 Amtraks, 8 BNSF freight, and the rest Metras. I screwed up the digital shots of Amtrak #3, at Westmont, and #4, the inbound Chief, got by me at Hinsdale downtown station. Here is a selection. With Amtrak #6, the Cal. Zephyr, running very late and getting later, I broke away after Amtrak #383 and drove up to West Chicago for dinner at a Steak n Shake I hadn't visited. En route back I got a UP freight on the EJ&E at West Chicago tower, and got back to Naperville just in time to get Amtrak #6 and a freight before calling it a day.

Highlands, 2:08 p.m.

Amtrak #5, 2:14 pm

BNSF 4829 West, 2:31 pm

Metra 1316, engines 187/401, rear end, stopping at Westmont, 2:57 pm

Westmont, 3:07 pm, BNSF 5625 East, coal loads, on track 3, 1074 East with stacks on track 2

Metra has, for some reason, been adding "Burlington" or "BNSF Railway" to letterboards on old BN bilevels. This is 768 with "Burlington" at Westmont on train 1311, at 3:10 pm.

BNSF 6211 East, coal loads, Westmont, 3:23 pm

Downgrade to Clarendon Hills!

Metra 1313, Downers Grove Fairview Ave., 4:15 pm or so (owing to heavy ridership, most Metra trains were running a few minutes off schedule, as per usual)

BNSF Railway lettered car 761 in 1313

Metra 1315, same consist as 1316, arrives Naperville at 5:34 pm

Amtrak 383, the Illinois Zephyr, arrives and leaves Naperville, 6:29 and 6:30. In the going-away, that's Metra 1320 in the distance.

West Chicago, Ill., 7:51 pm, northbound UP coal empty on EJ&E, crossing Geneva Sub main (Overland Route) and about to diverge west onto UP yard connection trackage. Rear unit was SP-painted 6328.

Naperville, 8:17 pm, Amtrak #6 finally arrives, almost 6 hours late. On the rear are PV's Puget Sound and Sierra Hotel, both ex-CB&Q domes, I believe. Just as #6 stopped, a westbound BNSF intermodal with a Warbonnet in the lead, came by on track 2.

BNSF 8219 West

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