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Railfanning in Sacramento

Near my house runs the UP Martinez Subdivision, which is extremely busy. With Roseville Yard only a mile away, there is constant scanner traffic and the banging of trains switching can be heard prominently from my house. Here are some photos of a great place I found in which to railfan near my house. It's a smooth paved road and TOTALLY LEGAL. There is a convenient turn-around so I can park my car and face the tracks while not blocking the zero traffic along that road because it dead-ends about 100' from where I am parked. The shed in the distance is C.P. Antelope, MP 102.3.

Click on thumbnail for full size image Description

(47K) SP 8247 leads a mixed freight out of Antelope towards Sacramento..

(43K) My mother decided to accompany me on this beautiful day for railfanning on East Sunday, 2000.

(40K) A perfect place to park to watch trains on this PUBLIC road! No fences to obstruct the view of the trains!

(73K) Train #6, the California Zephyr running on time approaches Antelope.

(28K) Train #6 passes by at 79 MPH, forcing me to use a fast shutter speed to avoid blurring the photo.

(51K) The California Zephyr usually runs with three Genesis locomotives. Today, there are four, all elephant style and one of them is in Phase IV paint. I didn't realize this until after the photos were developed.

(23K) Today, only one Amtrak box car on the rear. I've seen as many as 6 or 7 Ambox cars bringing up the rear.

(34K) Just as we were about to leave, we were surprised with this UP freight containing nothing but empties. These three locomotives pulled over 150 cars, no problem since they were empties.

(30K) May 24, 2000 I had to finish off a roll of film, so what better way to do it than to go down to my favorite railfanning spot near my house. Amtrak #5, the westbound Californiz Zephyr races and beats a slow-moving freight coming out of the Antelope Yard on the adjacent track.

(30K) Train #5 with only 3 P42 locomotives zooms by at 79 MPH, the maximum authorized speed.

(56K) I brought my wife along with me and behind me is the same freight train that #5 went by in the last photo. It seemed to take a year for this train to get to us. It was still pulling out of the Antelope Yard and wouldn't pick up speed until the last car crossed over onto the main line behind #5.

(41K) UP switcher 2837 slowly backing up with quite a long consist. Maximum zoom at 210mm. Taken: January 27, 2001.

(41K) Amtrak #5, westbound California Zephyr on January 27, 2001. UP switcher 2837 on the far track still backing up into Roseville yard.

(81K) Amtrak #5 heading westbound towards Sacramento at 79 MPH. Notice the reflection of the box cars in the puddles below it. Taken: January 27, 2001.

(74K) At Roseville, CA, brand new P42 #128 in the consist of train #6, the California Zephyr. Taken: February 24, 2001.

(66K) Another nice photo of #128. Right after taking this, the engineer commented on my borrowed umbrella from my wife. I didn't blame him because it was blue with pink butterflies all over it! Taken: February 24, 2001.

(37K) June 14, 2001, Amtk P42 123 on the point of train #5 in new phase V paint. Originally this locomotive was painted in Phase IV scheme.

(40K) June 14, 2001, Amtrak boxcars are now showing in Phase V paint to match the locomotives.

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All Photos © 2000 Steven Reynolds.

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