Stampede Pass Diary

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Love this thread, great pictures and awesome info on BNSF's Stampede Pass. I have a question, I recently saw two one level container "stack" trains; one in the Auburn Yard and the other heading south through Tukwila. The containers that where on the train were Schnieder & J.B. Hunt, usually seen on UP Stack trains (at least that I know of). So is BNSF sending UP Stack trains over Stampede Pass? Or is something else going on with these single-level stack trains? Thanks.
 
Interesting. I haven't seen any single stack trains through here (Stampede and Yakima Subs), but I also don't see every train that rolls through. I know years ago they ran some baretables through here, but that was before the Triangle and things have changed. What I see now is mostly empty grain, with a few empty coal and an empty oil every once in a while.

-Kevin
 
Years ago, pre-triangle, UP was doing some work on their mainline in the Gorge which shut it down for a while....they detoured a couple of west-bound single-stack trains over stampede. As I recall, this only lasted for 2 days. Those are, as I recall, the only container trains I recall over the pass. The post about it may be on one of the old archived threads here. This detour over Stampede was supposed to go on for a few days, but nothing really came of it besides the 2 single-well trains.
 
Maybe UP was doing some work on their line between Tacoma and Seattle. I've often wondered why BNSF doesn't do UP style single stacks and TOFC types over Stampede, though. Seems to be an abundance of well cars. Simply make their stack trains longer.
 
Speaking of baretables, I saw a train just roll through the Stampede to the Yakima Sub and at first glance it looked to be baretable. Closer inspection (it was in the distance) revealed it to be an empty ribbon rail train, pulled by two heritage 1 units. First time I've seen anything ribbon rail related here. Is BNSF doing some work further up the line closer to Auburn?

-Kevin
 
Love this thread, great pictures and awesome info on BNSF's Stampede Pass. I have a question, I recently saw two one level container "stack" trains; one in the Auburn Yard and the other heading south through Tukwila. The containers that where on the train were Schnieder & J.B. Hunt, usually seen on UP Stack trains (at least that I know of). So is BNSF sending UP Stack trains over Stampede Pass? Or is something else going on with these single-level stack trains? Thanks.

Maybe a 'stack fillet' train off the Oregon Trunk? I've heard that BNSF has been sending double stacks to CA, unloading the top containers, and sending them north to the PNW on the OT with only one container in each well. No double stacks on the OT because of clearance issues.

Paul
Seattle, WA
 
Is anything happening with Stampede these days, other than the usual assorted whenever whatevers eastbound? One can't help but wonder if BNSF has anything up their sleeves on the tunnel, signaling, etc.
 

Tuscor

Don't be Ignorant
Is anything happening with Stampede these days, other than the usual assorted whenever whatevers eastbound? One can't help but wonder if BNSF has anything up their sleeves on the tunnel, signaling, etc.
I have not heard of much going on with any new projects. Also have not been up to the Stampede Sub since November 1 when I chased an eastbound Xtrain with a CSX leader. Here are a few from that trip.

There is also a new Stampede Pass Railfan group on Facebook for those interested.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/366156403540504/

Brian Ambrose
Renton, WA
 

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Every year when the seemingly nearly daily mudslides take place, I wonder why BNSF and Amtrak haven't rerouted the Empire Builder over Stampede. Of course, they'd also benefit by freeing up Cascade Tunnel slots... Split the thing at Pasco, and you won't even need an additional silver bullet slot on the Lakeside sub, either.
 
I moved out to the Lake Sawyer area of Maple Valley over New Years and am enjoying being fairly close to the crossing on 216th. Usually I can hear them blow for Covington and Ravensdale as well when it's quiet. You also can hear them working east from Covington for a few minutes before they arrive to the crossing close to me. While I lamented moving from Auburn because of being further from the mainlines, I'm really enjoying being able to hear the trains working hard and rumbling through, particularly at night.

Ok, so my question is this. Yesterday an eastbound blew for the crossing but it was clear that it wasn't moving at track speed. I went ahead and drove that way because I was just heading out, and it was an eastbound empty grainer moving pretty darn slow. For kicks I drove out to Ravensdale (for the first time in years) and waited for quite a while but it never came, so just headed back. Just a few minutes ago (Tuesday 11:10am or so) another eastbound blew for the crossing seemingly going slower as well, and it sounded like more of the older BN horns used on the geeps. What I'm wondering is are they doing some trackwork out here or something? I can't see anything going on from the crossing but it could be out of view.

It's certainly been a lot more active than I thought, with all of the grain, coal, and oil empties moving east.

-Dave
 
Can you (gu)estimate the daily number of trains? I'm at the south end of Auburn Yard so i can't see Stampede Pass activity, just a lot of northbound arrivals. When I'm in town, I do see a lot of 'shuffle' in and out of the yard using the wye.
 
Well, I would guess an average of 6-7 per day, but I'm sure it varies and I'm not always at home (though I work in Covington and can sometimes hear them there). I've heard them about an hour or so apart at times, but usually 2 hours minimum .

Just a guess, though.

-Dave
 
Well, I would guess an average of 6-7 per day, but I'm sure it varies and I'm not always at home (though I work in Covington and can sometimes hear them there). I've heard them about an hour or so apart at times, but usually 2 hours minimum .
You're correct, it's about 5-7 per day. And it does vary. Usually not less than 3, but sometimes as many as 8 or 9. Mostly empty grainers. An empty coal every other day and an empty oil every other day. Or so.
 

Tuscor

Don't be Ignorant
And just for interest, there was an eastbound through Covington at 7:45am and another at 9:00am this morning.

-Dave
There were 6 eastbounds in daylight last Sunday 2-15-15. Two before I arrived at Easton between 0730 and 0900, three while I was there and another after I left that went by Easton around 4 PM.

Brian Ambrose
Renton, WA
 

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