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Trip to Alma

Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:24 am
by chapmaja
I had to go to Alma again today for work (ok yesterday since it is after midnight).

The MMRR line had 6 boxcars on the siding near the old refinery site. These appear to be storage cars as I think they were there in January and October when I was up there previously.

I took some detours as I returned south. ZFS in Ithaca had a ton of cars on the property, but it appears right now they are storage. Two types of cars were present. Covered hoppers (3 bay) mainly with CBFX reporting marks and tank cars mainly in the CBTX reporting marks. All cars appeared new, and the tank cars did not have placards on them, which to me indicates they are likely new and as of now unused.

After Ithaca I went to Middleton. A decent cut of cars were at the elevator with more towards the "end" of the line. No sign of power left on the branch by the elevator and not enough cars for a unit train.

I decided to park for awhile in the lot by Amtrak in E. Lansing as well. Soon after arriving A CN WB headed by the depot. It was lead by CN 5745 pointed WB, then had WB facing BNSF 7881, EB facing BNSF 6886, 14 autoracks (MT I think), 2 4 bay covered hoppers, and 1 white tank car, and 5 black tank cars.

What train would this have been at about 5:15 pm through East Lansing?

Re: Trip to Alma

Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:22 am
by David Lang
Thanks chapmaja for the report.

I have a question. The ZFS facility in Ithaca, that is on the old Ethanol property that never made a go of it correct?

What does ZFS do now? Seems like I heard a while back something (i.e. ZFS) was going to redevelop the site and use rail service. What is the situation?

Thanks.

David Lang

Re: Trip to Alma

Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:17 am
by AARR
Correct DAve. ZFS is the old ethanol plant and ZFS processes soybeans there.
David Lang wrote:Thanks chapmaja for the report.

I have a question. The ZFS facility in Ithaca, that is on the old Ethanol property that never made a go of it correct?

What does ZFS do now? Seems like I heard a while back something (i.e. ZFS) was going to redevelop the site and use rail service. What is the situation?

Thanks.

David Lang

Re: Trip to Alma

Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 2:10 pm
by blueheron13
The CN train was L501, Flint to Battle Creek.

Re: Trip to Alma

Unread postPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 3:57 pm
by HESR3868
chapmaja wrote:The MMRR line had 6 boxcars on the siding near the old refinery site. These appear to be storage cars as I think they were there in January and October when I was up there previously.


Those should be edible bean boxes indeed in storage. Slowly but surely they get ordered, but those have been sitting there for nearly a year.

Re: Trip to Alma

Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 11, 2020 12:06 am
by chapmaja
blueheron13 wrote:The CN train was L501, Flint to Battle Creek.


Would the autoracks on the head end have been destined for the yard on the SW side of Lansing then? I can't think of any other reason a Flint-BC train would have autoracks.

Re: Trip to Alma

Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 11, 2020 12:56 am
by GTW6401
CN sorts autoracks into blocks at Battle Creek.

Cars from Flint would make those connections at Battle Creek for western destinations.

Re: Trip to Alma

Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 11, 2020 11:10 am
by chapmaja
I didn't include this, but the racks I saw on the train appeared empty. That is something that might make a difference.