The track to the quarry is a left-over of the abandoned line to Marshield.
It's a handy place to get a train off the mainline.
I see some cars leaked sand. Frac sand flows like hour-glass sand.
|There's some BNSF one day|
|And on another day, there are 2 CSX and a CN. I think this is the first CSX I've seen on a frac sand train.|
This is my home-drawn map of the northwest corner of Wisconsin Rapids.
All the trains shown in the pictures above are in one location, the stub track on the upper left of my map,
with my red line showing a parked train.
And a day later, I remembered I had some kite aerial pictures of this area.
Looking west at the spur ending by the quarry. The pyramid on the upper left is the capped landfill for much of central Wisconsin.
There are some gray piles of crushed basalt (ballast stone). My picture doesn't show the deep hole of the quarry, to the left.
Below, I pasted 2 pictures together. They weren't a perfect pan, but not bad considering they were 2 minutes apart and from a kite.
And pardon the partly cloudy cloud shadow. If I and the trains had all day, I could wait for the sun to come around.
The tracks in my stitched pictures don't line up perfectly at the diamond, but you can get an idea of the quadrants of the wye.
Please scroll if the picture is wide for your screen.
The quarry is out of view to the left. The Rapids yard and the paper mill is to the right.
A sand train is backed in to the quarry, and is getting ready to leave north to Junction City.
And here's a westbound with 7 engines at 25th Avenue, pointing west toward Taylor.
That's the green train / line on the lower left of my map.
Some days, excess power is set out in the siding. But today, its all going west.
The containers are occupying 2 spurs, and may be accumulating here because the Ashley Furniture company in Arcadia had flood damage for a few days after heavy thunderstorms flooded their town in July 2017. So those tracks are not available to hold sand trains this week.
And to make it even more interesting, an eastbound is coming toward them.
With some dispatching luck, the train occupying the quarry track will leave north to Junction City and get out of the way.
The train with 7 engines could back into the Rapids yard to get out of the way,
but that's often busy and full with the evening switch jobs. There's only 8 tracks.
Or back up and duck into the quarry,
so the eastbound can come around the curve and head north out of town.
It's time for me to go home, so I didn't see how this meet ended.
That's a lot of sand moving. Two east / north bounds in an hour in the evening, and one empty.
The action is not the classic saw-by of trains that are too long to pass in a double-ended passing siding, but it is interesting.
This page was photographed in July, 2017.