Facebook Page

A Trip to Railfan Iowa 12/29/2009

by Chris Guenzler

Bob Cox picked me up at the Depot Inn & Suites at 6:15 AM. After we turned on a heater in the Silvery Rails Gallery, we headed north on US Highway 63 through Kirksville and on north to Lancaster. There we turned west onto Missouri Highway 202 which took us into Iowa where we turned west onto Iowa Highway 2 which took us to Centerville, our first stop of the day. We found that the Appoonosa County Railroad motive power is kept inside their engine house in Centerville. We then went and took pictures of two other things in Centerville.

The Rock Island Station in Centerville.

The Burlington Station in Centerville.

Burlington Northern Caboose 11396. We left Centerville and drove north on Iowa Highway 5 to our next stop in Moravia.

The Moravia Wabash Station.

The Southern Iowa Railway Station in Moravia, From here we continued north on Highway 5 towards Albia.

The Relco Facility in Albia before we headed into town to find our next prey of the morning. We looked around Albia for it and asked at the Casey's Gas Station for directions but they didn't take us to it. Finally at a hardware store, we got the proper directions.

Relco Alco HH660 602 ex EJ&E painted in a Burlington Railroad paint scheme in Albia behind the Monroe County Historical Museum building.

Two more views of the Relco 602.

CB&Q Caboose. From here we stopped by the BNSF mainline.

BN Spreader 972618.

BNSF Power for the spreader. We continued North on Iowa Highway 5 to Knoxville where we turned north onto Iowa Highway 14 which took us across the Des Moines River and we headed to our next destination of the morning, Newton, Iowa.

Three views of the Rock Island Station in Newton. We then found the Iowa Interstate Yard but an engine was switching out of view. We also found the shop building where the QJ Steam Engines are stored. We left town and continued north on Iowa Highway 14 to our next stop in Marshalltown.

The original freight depot built by the M&StL in Marshalltown.

The Chicago North Western Freight House in Marshalltown.

Two views of the Union Pacific in Marshalltown as we left town. We headed west on US Highway 30 to Colo then north on US Highway 65. At Zearing we took the road into town.

Three views of the M&StL Depot in Zearing, Iowa. Back on US Highway 65, we continued north to our next stop in Iowa Falls.

Iowa Falls Illinois Central Station.

Iowa Falls Illinois Central Freight House.

The Mills Tower Display in Iowa Falls is where the Canadian National and Union Pacific cross each other today.

Iowa Falls Illinois Central Section House.

An interesting piece of railroading as one enters Iowa Falls from the south. We continued north on US Highway 65 to our next stop in Mason City and why we drove all the way here.

Iowa Traction 50. This engine was built in 1920 and started working for the Washington & Old Dominion Railway 1920-1948. It joined the Cedar Rapids & Iowa City Railway 1948-1956 then the Kansas City, Kaw Valley & Western Railway 1956-1963 and 1963 joined the Iowa Traction. Railroad.

Seven more views of the Iowa Traction 50. From here we wanted to go find any other engines on this unique railroad.

We spotted our next Iowa Traction engine as we headed west.

Iowa Traction 60 built in 1917. It served the Youngstown & Ohio River Railroad 1917-1932 before working at the Union Electric Railway 1932-1948 and joined Mason City & Clear Lake Railway in 1948.

Two more views of the Iowa Traction 60.

Iowa Traction 32.

Iowa Traction 31.

The Iowa Traction 40 Snowplow.

Iowa Traction 51 was built for the Northeast Oklahoma Railroad where it served them from 1921-1940. Next the engine went to the Cedar Rapids & Iowa City Railway where it worked from 1940-1954. From there it went to the Kansas City, Kaw Valley & Western Railway running there from 1954-1963 before joining the Iowa Traction roster in 1963.

Three more views of Iowa Traction 51.

Across the street from the shops is a scrap yard with this remote control switcher.

Our last Iowa Traction picture is of Caboose 9353. From here we went to find the Milwaukee Road Station in Mason City.

The Mason City Milwaukee Road Station.

Iowa Chicago & Eastern 4297 at Mason City. From Mason City we headed east on US Highway 18 which we took into Charles City.

The Charles City Milwaukee Road Station.

The passenger cars belong to the Charles Western Trailway. From here we took US Highway 218 which we took to Iowa Highway 3 which we took east into Waverly.

The Waverly Great Western Railroad Station is now a Sub City Restaurant.

The origins of this railroad station was easy to find. We continued east in Iowa Highway 3 to Oelwein and our last destination of this day.

The Hub City Heritage Corporation Railroad Museum Oelwein, Iowa 12/29/2009

Three views of the Chicago Great Western FP7A 116A.

The former Oelwein Shop Complex.

M&StL bulkhead flat car 16209.

CGW covered hopper 7230.

CGW 40' boxcar 92105.

Minnesota Transfer S-1 62.

Great Western Caboose 637.

Rock Island caboose 17958.

CStPM&O SW-1 55.

A railroad signal display.

The Railway Express Building.

The Modern Passenger Station is now the Oelwein Police Station.

The two-story yard office building and the 75-foot dispatchers' tower, which is the last of the CGW dispatchers' towers and the last tower in the State of Iowa. Special thanks to President William Mundt who was there to show us around.

From Oelwein we went west on Iowa Highway 281 to Dunkerton and then turned west on County Highway C66 which took us to US Highway 63 which would take us back to La Plata. Hungry we could not find any food along that highway until we got all the way to Oskaloosa where I enjoyed a KFC Dinner and Bob enjoyed a Hardy's Dinner. We returned back to La Plata right before 9:00 PM ending a fantastic day of Railfanning in Iowa.

Click here for the next part of the story