Saturday, December 1, 2012

A Look Back

The Skally Line has a fun past. Just a few years ago when I started following it, it was much different than it is today. I stumbled upon some shots I took just shy of 4 years ago. How things have changed since the beginning of 2009...
SCXY 1363 "City of Rush City" was still in the Nobles Rock paint scheme. The colors grew on me in a hurry. She didn't look as nice as she does today, but she still looked good.
January 13th of that year my friend Brian and I chased the Skally to Hinckley. The temperature was a crisp -26 F that morning. We got out to take shots of the SCXY crossing the BNSF Hinckley Sub. and the Conductor looked at us and said "Really?!?, Today?". I laughed and commented that you have to chase when you can. This shot captures some of the oddness of the day.The MRS boxcar should have been dropped by the Hinckley Local in Coon Rapids, MN. Why it made it to the SCXY I will never know. This odd move also had the 1363 sandwiched between cars crossing Hwy 61 on the BNSF Main. It was so cold the crossing gate on the North side of the tracks didn't raise back up, even 20 minutes after the train had passed. The tank car was for Lakes Gas in Hinckley.
MNN 901 was the backup power on the line, with its Thief River Falls Championship Hockey logos. This engine never returned after the

Fall of that year the bridge over the Snake River had a pier break. The equipment was moved off the line until the bridge was repaired. Thanks to a nice Government stimulus check for $650,000 the bridge was fixed and Horizon Mill was able to bring its employees back to work. 1363 returned in the NP paint and MNN 901 was replaced by SCXY 1352 in the new colors. Zinpro in North Branch started built a new tank car unloading platform soon after and started receiving loads by rail car. 2010 was a wild year on the Skally.

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