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Train Festival 2011 The Chase of Nickel Plate 765 7/22/2011

by Chris Guenzler

Having ridden to Bureau on the Grand Excursion 2004, this was a no brainer to chase one of my favorite steam engines out across the Illinois countryside. We got up and went to the International House of Pancakes for breakfast before we drove down to Train Festival 2011 and dropped Gene and Nathan off for their trip to Bureau today. We took time for some pictures from outside the grounds.

The Leviathan 63 always looks good.

CB&Q SW7 9255 was switching passenger cars this morning.

The Leviathan 63.

The tank engines. It was now time to drive to the west end of the grounds to meet Keith Schmidt who I would be following with Bob Riskie, Bob and Elizabeth Alkire on the chase of the Nickel Plate Road 765 today.

One of the QJs would be the power for the Walcott Trains while we are gone today. We held a quick meeting and decided to go over where we wanted to shot today. Our first pictures would be by a factory in Moline so we headed there.

This truck provided us with plenty of entertainment while we waited for the NKP 765 to show up.

The photographers were ready for the Nickel Plate Road 765.

The Nickel Plate Road 765 rolled through Moline. With that done, we headed to a road crossing in Colona.

The Nickel Plate 765 was really on the move coming through Colona. We then got on US Highway 6 to give chase. All we saw was smoke ahead of us so unless something happened that would be our two runbys of the train. Keith knew that the bridge was out on US Highway 6 east of Sheffield so we turned south into Buda then went east on 1200 Ave where we got a phone call that the train had stopped. We made it to the next grade crossing and joined the other photographers there for the train to arrive.

The Nickel Plate Road 765 west of Tiskilwa. Had he not stopped this shot would not have happened. From here we drove to a gas station in Tiskilwa to get some snacks in place of lunch. We went over to the park, had our snacks and decided to go over where we wanted to shoot today.

First we shot the old Rock Island Station in Tiskilwa. Then we drove three miles east to a curve and waited.

Our location on God's green planet Earth.

Our group of photographers here waiting on Nickel Plate 765.

Nickel Plate Road 765 started the trip back to Rock Island and headed west by our photo location. We went east and got on Interstate 180 which we took north to Interstate 80 where we listened to the Chicago Cubs game as we sped west. West of Annawan where Interstate 80 crosses over the railroad we saw the train stopped. We headed to Ford Road for our next pictures.

Nickel Plate Road 765 at Ford Road. We took US 6 back into Moline where we set up again for yet another set of pictures of the Nickel Plate Road 765.

Nickel Plate Road 765 in Moline. We drove into Rock Island and set up for one final set of pictures of the Nickel Plate Road 765.

The crew working the Nickel Plate Road 765.

The Railfans Chasing Trains today wearing our shirts we were given.

Someone who knew me.

Nathan on the train.

The train leaving Moline. We got back into the van and drove over to Rock Island for our final pictures of the Nickel Plate Road 765.

The Nickel Plate Road 765 has returned to Rock Island.

Nathan enjoying the end of his trip.

The train heads for the Train Festival 2011 grounds. We met Nathan and Gene then went and had dinner before we would return to the Motel 6 to wait to leave for the night photo shoot.