Move Snow, Move! News Story Posted By Kevin (Click Name To Email)
Sunday, December 31, 2006 - The Denver-Metro area has been hammered by over 35 inches of snow in most areas in the last two weeks by two blizzards that were separated by less than a week. While Denver certainly had some problems, the eastern plains of Colorado and western plains of Kansas may have had it worse.
In addition to the multiple feet of snow, high speed winds have resulted in the formation of many drifts. UP's Kansas Pacific line (Limon Subdivision) apparently has several trains that are actually snowed in with crews still on board. To make matters worse, I-70 is shut down due to the weather as well.
The solution? Union Pacific brought it's Cheyenne-based rotary plow down into Denver today via the Greeley Sub. In the afternoon, the plow departed 36th street eastbound headed for the KP Line. The plow was being pushed by two AC4400CW's, two plow box cars, a crew car (passenger), and an SD70M on the end.
Following closely behind the plow train (symbol: WDEDEF-31) was another snow special. A train with a Jordan Spreader (symbol: WDVDVF-31) departed about twenty minutes after the plow. The spreader wasn't just any old spreader though. It was none other than DRGW AX-41, the Jordan Spreader that the Grande kept in Minturn to plow Tennessee Pass in major storms. UP has kept the spreader and stored it in North Yard. So far as I know, this is the first time the spreader has been used since the major blizzard in March 2003 when parts of the Moffat received 80+ inches of snow.
The closed roads to the east prevented me from chasing too far, but I got several shots of both trains between 36th street and the siding of Mesa. Here are eleven shots of the trains for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy!