Labor Day weekend on the Marcelline Sub

Usually, Labor Day weekend means that I’m out doing something train related. I decided this year to head out to Camden, Missouri on the Marcelline Sub.

I arrived a little before 10:00 and found that I wasn’t alone – there was another car, and two railfans wearing day-glo orange vests already there waiting on the (late, as is the norm) Amtrak 4. It didn’t take long for the action to kick up.

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BNSF ES44C4s 8178 and 6600 lead a westbound intermodal on Main 1 at 1002

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Another C4, BNSF 7104, along with Dash-9 4399, bring up the markers on the westbound at 1004.

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Amtrak 4 arrives at 1012, led by P42s 151 and 114.

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At 1018, another westbound snuck up on main 1 and came to a stop short of the crossing.

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We heard the horns of an oncoming eastbound. One of the other railfans predicted that it would be on Main 3 (the NS/Wabash Main). Sure enough, it was an eastbound NS freight on 3 that tripped the crossing gates at 1025.

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The charges on this eastbound were NS Dash 9 9823 and a former BN SD60M turned hired gun CBFX 6027.

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The tail end of the NS eastbound rolls by the westbound still waiting on Main 1 at 1027. You can certainly see the separation, along with the lower elevation of the NS/Wabash line compared to the BNSF/Santa Fe iron.

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The westbound intermodal finally moves west again at 1029. Power consists of two BNSF units and two from NS: BNSF 5479 and 7394; NS 9500 and 9869.After the westbound left, my contemporaries decided to call it a day and/or decided to head to another location. From here on out, I was flying solo. I had a seat in my car and started uploading the first set of pics to social media when…

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…my thoughts were interrupted by a westbound “Z” at 1044 with BNSF GEs 5761, 4699, 7974, and 4452 on point.

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An ‘away’ shout of the head end of the westbound “Z”

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I had just enough time to pick out my shots and updated social media before another westbound intermodal came running ’round the bend

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Closeup of BNSF Dash 9 4646

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Closeup of BNSF ES44DC 7620

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BNSF 4646 and 7620 head ’round the bend at 1103

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Coming ‘round on Main 2… It’s gotta be an eastbound “Z” at 1121 led by an ACe.

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The eastbound consist contains not 1, but 2 EMDs. BNSF ES44C4 8248 is sandwiched between SD70ACes 8563 and 8521, with C44-9W 4657 on the rear.

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Parting shot of the eastbound.

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You know that thingamabob you ordered on Amazon? It just might have ridden a “Z” train somewhere along its journey.

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Eastbound intermodal number 2 at 1137 with BNSF 7642 and 5113 on point.

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Eastbound intermodal number 3 at 1156 with four toasters: 4087, 4413, 6956, and 8091.

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The fourth eastbound at 1207 is an appearance by Uncle Pete. UP SD70ACe 8991 and ES44AC 2554 are in charge.

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Away shot of the eastbound UP train.

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After a parade of four eastbound intermodal trains, it was time for a west man to cleanse the palette at 1214.

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Closeup of lead BNSF ES44C4 4279.

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27: Norfolk Southern SD70M 2589 trails the two BNSF units on the west man.

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I was just about to pack it in and head for beans when the train gods asked at 1224: Think ya got room for one more westbound “Z?” Engines are 7325, 7819, 5173, and 7547.

Grand Total: 13 trains in 2 1/2 hours. Surprisingly, no Tier 4’s showed up.

All photos were taken on Sunday, September 2, 2018.