This is the start of three nearly solid days of railroad photography in the Thanksgiving week of 2005; apparently, I spent practically all of my time in the daylight hours of my three off-days prior to Thanksgiving taking pictures of trains, something that seems ridiculous to the me of a decade later who is typing this story, but – and because of that – I hope that you like the pictures and the stories here, since I wish to feel like the time invested has some value to others!
We start at Thibodaux Junction.
The Louisiana & Delta Railroad’s SC1 job is working the east end of Schriever siding, building a train to Raceland.
The Mountain Laurel 14 is in charge of the job today.
Okay, let’s have a look the other way before we get out of here.
Most of those buildings have since been removed.
On our way to Raceland, we stop by the 49.6 detector to get this shot.
Yes, that’s not much of a train.
Now, in Raceland, we see the ML 14 on the Lockport Branch trackage shoving an empty tank car toward Raceland Raw Sugars.
Apparently, despite being grinding season, there were no cars to pull from the mill today.
So, back toward the mainline the locomotive goes.
Perhaps it will stop to work the MTI cement-mud place, but I do not know.
Nothing stays the same, and “progress” would eventually alter this scene too.
There is more than just sugarcane, sugarcane equipment, MTI, and radio towers here today.
Let’s get a non-train picture in, for good measure.
Back at the 49.6, we see the ML 14 returning to Schriever with nothing.
It appears that the job isn’t making much money this morning, but there was shuffling of BNSF maintenance-0f-way equipment to do upon returning to Schriever. That weird load on the flatcar is still there.
There is some switching happening, but I don’t recall its specific purpose.
Now, we’re shoving back into the storage track.
In the below image, the track peeling off to the right is the beginning of the former branchline to Houma; today, it just extends a few hundred feet to store cars, and to offload lumber cars.
Oh, what’s that sound up there?
Twenty-four minutes later, the ML 14 has, on the mainline, run around the cut that was parked in the siding – a nearly-two-mile round trip – and is preparing to shove it to the east.
OMW is protecting the shove, as was common in those days.
I don’t know if the train was building its cut for the next day or if it was going west to do more work on this day.
It looks like a loaded grain train recently used the siding.
Here’s a wider view.
Okay, let’s wrap this up.
I guess I returned to Le Jardin for lunch; about an hour-and-a-half later, I was back on the scene in time to shoot my first digital telephoto shot of the westbound Sunset Limited.
If the train is running at normal speed, the next place where you can shoot the #1 after Schriever is at Berwick Bay, and this might be the first time that I shot the Sunset Limited here. I believe that the first time that I ever shot here was nine days before.
There was a westbound BNSF manifest train behind him, and I got him at Bayou Sale, the first time that I ever do this shot.
Finally, in the Syracusaville area of Morgan City, we see the Chip Local, working Patterson Tubular.
I don’t know why there were these flatcars instead of the usual pipe gondolas; perhaps there were some unusually large pipes arriving.
Well, then, that’s enough for today, but if you thought that was plenty, tomorrow is ‘worse,’ and it’s even better!