One of my favorite places to spend a morning is on the upper Austin Loop on Mullan Pass. You can hear a train thundering out of Tobin for almost an hour before it reaches this spot. The massive ... (more)
This westbound coal load is screaming thru the deep cut at Iron Ridge. This location is at the top of the loops that drop the railroad to the valley floor at Austin, Mt.
One of Montana Rail Links newest locomotives, the MRL4402 blast up the 2.2% grade at Austin, MT. These heavy mountain maulers were built to conquer this grade!
BNSF6674 lifts a westbound coal train around the horseshoe curve at Iron Ridge. The sun has just broke over the Ridge at 6:28AM. Note the Rear help above the headend power leaving Austin siding. T... (more)
The sun has just cleared the mountains as SD70ACE BNSF9161 lifts an export coal load towards Mullan Pass, MT. The multiple 10 degree curves at the Austin "loops" add resistance to the heavy unit t... (more)
MRL4313 helps to lift an export coal load over Mullan Pass, MT. The multiple 10 degree curves at the Austin "loops" add resistance to the heavy unit train as it combats the compensated 2.2% grade.
BNSF 5984 now has most of the train on the 2.2% climb as it approaches Austin.
One of my favorite vantage points on Mullan Pass is the Upper Horseshoe of the Austin Loops. Screaming upgrade past the Copper King mine BNSF 6329 leads its train of export black diamonds towards... (more)
BNSF 6299 is the last unit of a DPU consist shoving hard on the rear of an export coal train climbing Mullan Pass. The manned swing helper can be seen passing between the new and old Homestead as ... (more)
MRL 4310 shoves against a westbound intermodal train with a threatening western sky...
MRL 282 leads a light helper set downgrade towards Austin. Note the huge cut that bypasses the now abandoned Iron Ridge Tunnel.
BNSF 9835 thunders around the upper loop on the climb out of Austin. I am standing on the tailings of the Copper King Mine...on a spectacular late June morning!
ATSF640 is the lead locomotive on this manifest. Mid Train MRL4313 adds more horsepower with a manned swing helper.
ATSF640 storms upgrade at Greenhorn trestle, MT. The 2.2% grade is in full effect, and the manifest could be heard for 30 min before crossing the gulch.
It is 6:50 AM and the sun has just broke over the ridge and lights up Austin, MT. The remnants of the previous nights thunderstorm can be seen dissipating in the new dry air-mass and blue sky. I ... (more)