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Making the Grade

Making the Grade

The photographer's favorite spot called simply "The Loops". The author's "Texas Special" merchandise (train 242) headed by five SD units struggle with the 50 car train over the valley of early autumn yellow and green aspens.
It is my favorite spot because the trains pass through the area five times as they work their way to the summit. The valley is a side canyon of the Williamson River (just off photo to bottom right). This is the steepest part of the railroad where the ruling grade reaches 2.2% approaching Quartz Mountain Summit. It is also the tallest trestle on the layout. There is one passing track half way up so two facing trains can be in the loops at the same time. Notice the 2nd train in the bottom of the canyon a couple smiles behind the author's train.

Scale date September 9, 1975, actual date November 21, 2009.

28mm, 1/64 sec., F/4, ISO-400, 40% reduction of original 72 dpi. photo.
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