Old 12-17-2007, 05:03 AM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Earth
Posts: 48
Cool San Antonio Area Railfanning - Dec. 15 & 16

Good weather, free time, and a desire to get a couple of shots I've spotted over the last couple of months led to me spend a couple hours railfanning on Saturday and all day on Sunday.

Saturday, Dec. 15:
After judging a local science fair in the morning, I made my way toward Lackland AFB and the UP yard on the outer edge of San Antonio. I had hopes of finding either a WB on the Sunset Route or a SB on the Laredo Sub for me to chase. Fortunately, a Laredo Sub SB could be seen as I crossed over the tracks on Military Dr., so I moved to an industrial crossing where the ex-SP and ex-MP parallel each other. The SB had UP 9270, a C40-8, leading and was a mixed freight train. I continued to chase it south and got it several times around the town of Lytle and at the siding just north of town.

Here's a shot of 9270 south in Lytle proper:
Image © Patrick Phelan
PhotoID: 215780
Photograph © Patrick Phelan

I kept chasing and set up for it again just south of Devine at the south end of the siding.

Here is the Devine siding shot as the train crosses a small humpback (telephoto lens useful here):
Image © Patrick Phelan
PhotoID: 215654
Photograph © Patrick Phelan

At this point, I abandoned the chase since the photo spots to the south all look the same. I then made my way to La Coste where I intercepted a WB mixed freight on the Sunset Route led by SD70ACe #8322. This train was the daily mixed freight out of Houston that runs with DPU power toward the end of the train. I shot him just west of La Coste at Pearson, at Dunlay, at a rural crossing between Hondo and Dunlay, and finally in Hondo from the Rte. 173 overpass. The overpass shot is one that I had wanted for some time and I'm quite happy with the result...

Image © Patrick Phelan
PhotoID: 215652
Photograph © Patrick Phelan

At this point, I called it quits for this chase and went home, contemplating what to do on Sunday.....

Sunday, Dec. 16:
Saturday's contemplation revealed my desire to get a shot of a train crossing the Colorado River in Columbus. I awoke early on Sunday and made my way east to Columbus, arriving at the bridge at 9 AM. I waited about an hour and was rewarded with a WB KCS train led by SD60 #708 and 2 SD40-2 cousins.

Image © Patrick Phelan
PhotoID: 215790
Photograph © Patrick Phelan

Next, I waited for 3.5 hours until 1:30 PM without another train movement. In fact, the only movement I saw was a UP hi-railer. I called it quits for this location, got lunch, and started following the tracks east toward Flatonia and home in San Antonio. At Weimar, I saw that the KCS train I photographed earlier was parked in the siding without a crew. As I was leaving the Weimar siding after getting roster shots, I saw a WB fly by with something red in the lead. I highballed to Flatonia and set up at the rail park and lucked into a KCS de Mexico Retrobelle (a.k.a. TacoBelle) #4077 leading a mixed freight.

Image © Patrick Phelan
PhotoID: 215789
Photograph © Patrick Phelan

Anyways, after getting him at the rail park, I moved down to Scott School Road and got a telephoto shot with the train wrapped around a s-curve. I kept chasing to Moulton, where I got more shots at the northernmost crossing in town, since 4077 was stopped. It was then back to Flatonia, where I photographed my first UP train of the day at photo pavilion, a WB stack train. Several railfans were at Tommy's pavilion enjoying the views.

Next up, two EB stack trains passed, and then a WB empty rock train, led by a trio of AC60s, departed from the Flatonia siding. I set up at Cal-Maine Rd. and got a nice shot as they headed into the late afternoon sun.

Image © Patrick Phelan
PhotoID: 215800
Photograph © Patrick Phelan

Oh, how the mighty have fallen... The AC60s were once the pride of the fleet pulling hot trailer trains, now they've come to Texas to die a quiet death hauling rock.

I got this empty rock train two more times at Waelder and Harwood before committing to Interstate 10 for my trip home.

All in all, not a bad weekend, and a good way to close out Texas railfanning in 2007.

Thanks for looking & Happy Holidays,
Traingod is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

All times are GMT. The time now is 07:29 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.