I have seen two Big Boys over the years one in Dallas, Texas and one in Cheyenne, Wyoming that I saw in May of 1999, when I had the opportunity to ride with the Union Pacific Steam Team on a double header with steam locomotives UP 844, a Northern 4-8-4 built by Alco in 1944, and UP 3985, a Challenger 4-6-6-4 built by Alco in 1943. We went from Cheyenne to Roseville, California climbing out of Cheyenne over Sherman Hill a steep grade that these locomotives were designed to conquer, we crossed Wyoming,through Utah going over the Great Salt Lake,thru Nevada, and over the Donner pass into California. Here is a photo of me beside the UP 3985 at pre-departure from Sparks, Nevada to the Donner Pass.
Posts: 3370 | Location: Okotoks Alberta Canada | Registered: November 22, 2002
The particular trip above also stopped off at the Union Station in Ogden, Utah, where it spent the Night. The Hostler's Model Rail Road Club Provided Security during that Layover on the way to California. Managed to get a few fine pictures and a tour of the train before it left. Yes, These were what caused Watches to run on Time!
Ogden Canyon east of the City has some of the Greatest Trout fishing anywhere when I was a lot younger. My Father took me fishing many times when I was young. The UP Mainline runs through Ogden Canyon. Not only did I see Many of these Huge Giants working pulling trains that were over a mile long, but the Canyon was the backdrop for many sightings of the "Big Blow" Gas Turbine Engines that un-seated the Big Boys and led to the Diesel/Electric Evolution of the 60's. I was lucky to have seen them all many times thanks to my Dad. The ground shook for 10 minutes before you could hear them coming and then the sounds from these Giants started up and you could feel the ground tremble much more and the sound of that whistle echoing off the Canyon Walls was almost deafening! I was about 6 when I first Saw one of them. Took me 5 minutes spinning gravel to get to the car about 80 feet away. Never saw an animal like that before and believe it or not, that animal had captured a couple of men. . . I could see them on its back!
Posts: 181 | Location: Salt Lake City, Utah in the USA | Registered: January 27, 2008
I watched the Challenger move that way a couple years ago, Joe, and was amused when it arrived at one overnight stop in Wyoming and the site message said 'we have no idea where this particular unit is at this time'.
I thought, 'ok, how in the world did they lose something THAT big?'
Posts: 3815 | Location: Estill Springs, Tennessee, USA | Registered: December 02, 2002