Wisconsin Northern Railroad
Wednesday, August 13, 2008 - Cameron, Wisconsin
Arlyn says, "I've been quite busy this summer and not had time to follow our favorite short line so I decided to take some pictures today. The weather was mild but an overcast sky wouldn't produce bright pictures. Anyway, here's a WHOLE BUNCH of pix."

Webmaster says, "Click on the picture to see it full-size."

The train heads north between Chetek and Cameron.

BT01 - http://tinyurl.com/56mnc2

BT03 - http://tinyurl.com/5m74vy

BT04 - http://tinyurl.com/667rcc

The train was carrying a load of poles from Oregon for Bell Pole in Barron.

BT02 - http://tinyurl.com/5gkvp5

This really isn't a dangerous situation--unless engineer Sean can slam 1500 into reverse and back up at 50 MPH (the train is going away from me).

BT05 - http://tinyurl.com/5zy7rc

cars are shoved onto the old Soo Line trackage east of Cameron towards Ladysmith:

BT06 - http://tinyurl.com/6f6v39

There are 110 more empty cars in New Auburn and 26 more stored in Bloomer.

In Cameron we meet up with signal maintainer and section man Ken Bell and his dog Max:

BT07 - http://tinyurl.com/5z32xa

The WN crew cut off and left 15 cars just south of Cameron. They have to take one car to Shadow Plastics in Rice Lake.

BT08 - http://tinyurl.com/5f77lf

I was invited as a special guest of Wisconsin Northern to take a cab ride with the crew. This was a special invitation and photos of this event are posted with permission of Wisconsin Northern, a Progressive Rail Inc company. Here we leave Cameron with Ken Bell protecting the crossing.

BT09 - http://tinyurl.com/5fs6np

As we are about to cross the diamond of the east-west line, the CAMERON sign marks where a large depot sat that served both the Soo Line and Omaha/CNW.

BT10 - http://tinyurl.com/62hdq6

With track from the old main line removed, we enter the old siding which now serves as the WN main.

BT11 - http://tinyurl.com/6e9s49

And, switching back onto the main.

BT12 - http://tinyurl.com/5zb8ry

BT13 - http://tinyurl.com/6bovs2

At 16th Avenue, there are signals to warn motorists.

BT14 - http://tinyurl.com/6n45t3

After a long downgrade, we cross a small creek. Sorry for the fuzzy picture--Sean kept shaking the engine! And a telephoto picture amplifies the movement.

BT15 - http://tinyurl.com/5dfaut

On the right is the tower that protected the Soo Line crossing of this Omaha/CNW track.

BT16 - http://tinyurl.com/66txvu

BT17 - http://tinyurl.com/5bcy36

You can still see where the Soo Line track was.

BT18 - http://tinyurl.com/5lkafv

Here is what the tower looked like in the 1950s.

BT34 - http://tinyurl.com/6zx6rd

As we enter Rice Lake, we cross the 4-lane Highway O. Again, telephoto makes vehicles appear closer than they are. This crossing is protected by gates but, probably because of rusty rail, the gates don't descend until the train is right at the crossing. That's OK as the train stops until the gates are down which prevents any chance of an "accident."

BT19 - http://tinyurl.com/5kxe8n

OK, gates are down, proceed to the Shadow Plastics siding.

BT20 - http://tinyurl.com/54p97k

The first switch is for Shadow Plastics and the second switch leads to the Co-op which gets fertilizer (not today).

BT21 - http://tinyurl.com/54wzvc

Backing into Shadow Plastics, conductor John throws the switch so we can leave the car on track 1.

BT22 - http://tinyurl.com/6pc6qr

Shadow Plastics and track 2.

BT23 - http://tinyurl.com/5v5w8l

John lines the switch back to the main and we'll head light engine back to Cameron.

BT24 - http://tinyurl.com/5k9nqj

I'm on the ground at Cameron. Here's rail on the wye that was made in 1915.

BT25 - http://tinyurl.com/5dphzo

Time to see if that 89-footer with the 80 foot poles will make it through the wye without hitting the nearby buildings. Made it by the first one:

BT26 - http://tinyurl.com/67vp3u

And, made it by the second one:

BT27 - http://tinyurl.com/5eh4wu

Time to head west to Barron with that turkey food and pole car. Here 1501 blasts over the diamond (Is 5 MPH blasting????)

BT28 - http://tinyurl.com/5rzhfk

The Jeep is no more. The crew vehicle is now a Ford F150 pickup.

BT29 - http://tinyurl.com/6kw7gl

Here is a sign taped to some of the turkey food cars that I hadn't seen before.

BT30 - http://tinyurl.com/5mc3za

Transition joint bars on the Bell Pole siding connect two different- sized rails.

BT31 - http://tinyurl.com/6elsv2

Ends of poles on the pole car.

BT32 - http://tinyurl.com/5nzpfg

In an unusual move, the crew left the first part of the train with plastics cars and a cushion coil car on the Bell Pole siding. They then shoved the turkey food into Barron with 1500.

BT33 - http://tinyurl.com/6y9zco

Arlyn says, "I then left the crew which switched Barron. Maybe some day I'll post some pictures of the switch moves in Beautiful Barron!!! "

Webmaster says, "Post 'em Sooner rather than Later, my friend. Thanks!"

Click here for Maintenance on a Wisconsin Northern Geep
Click here for April Derailment Clean-up Part 1
Click here for April Derailment Clean-up Part 2
Click here for April Derailment Clean-up Part 3
Click here for July Track Maintenance
Click here for August Cab Ride
Click here for September Cab Ride
Click here for "South of Norma"

Click here for a Wisconsin Northern Locomotive Roster
Click here for Maps of the Wisconsin Northern Railway

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All source material created by Ron Kohlin of Soddy-Daisy, Tennessee, USA
Pictures and accompanying text Created and Copyright © by Arlyn Colby, of Barron, Wisconsin.
This web site Constructed, Maintained, and Copyright © by Ron Kohlin of Soddy-Daisy, Tennessee, USA
All rights reserved.
Created on August 14, 2008.
Last modified on September 15, 2008.

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