Though the WC is now part of the Canadian National Railway I plan on keeping it a separate page for the time being.
WC F45 6654 lead train T347 downhill at Amnicon River near Superior WI on former C&NW trackage purchased back in 1991. August 2000.
(New) CN train M346 rolls though Gordon WI southbound on a bright May morning 2003. Since the merger of the WC the CN has made good use of the former WC line and plans on adding more train as time permits. Photo by Bob Gile.
(New) The yearly Virginia MN to Escanaba MI ore moves ran again this past year (2003) but without the familiar older C&NW ore cars. The CN used standard coal hoppers on this run, but at least managed to put together some pure WC SD45 lash ups. Photo by Dan Mackey.
WC SD45 #6598 leads a southbound Middletown All-Rail train at the Amnicon River dip near MP 446. Shots of WC power on trains out of Superior are getting harder to find with the influx of CN trains out of town. If the CN/WC merger is approved under the current operating plan, the CN has stated that they will be able to run the WC traffic with 90 fewer units, which means many older WC engines might not end the year running over their home rails. Jan. 2001.
Green Wienies as they sometimes referred to on the WC, lead train T004 out of Superior WI. on the old Soo Line alignment at Ambridge (south of Superior). This line has since been abandoned from this point south to Gordon WI. at which point the the WC's former C&NW line meets the original Soo Line for the rest of the trip south. The ex BN SD45's were the backbone of the WC fleet during the start up year of 1987 and some ran around in their former owners paint scheme until 1997 until seeing WC's maroon and gold, a full decade after they were purchased! April 1988.
On the WC you learn to expect the unexpected. Here we see former Soo Line GP30 #719 on the point of train LO64 at South Itasca. Their are 3 GP30's that still run around the WC in Soo Line colors. The white patch job over the SOO lettering that was applied in 1987 has pretty much disappeared revealing the large SOO underneath. Also, you have to love them Alco trucks! Aug. 1998
SD45 #6607 leads a empty unit grain train westbound on the DMIR at Ambridge. The track in the foreground is the former Soo Line/ WC main that crosses the DMIR at this point, and leads to a small yard just south of this location. April 1998.
CN/WC run-through intermodal train T176 is climbing uphill out of Superior WI. with two SD40-2 and engineer Dennis Holmes in charge on this snowy day in 1998. T176 is the hottest train run over the WC from Superior and is usually the easiest one to photograph, with it's departure happening mostly during the daylight hours.
A Middletown All-Rail ore train gets ready to pull out of town, but not before adding the units to the right as rear end helpers for the 14 mile 1%+ climb out of the Lake Superior Basin to Hawthorne WI. Most train out of Superior on the WC require helpers to assist on getting tonnage out of town. June 2000
Another Middletown All-Rail ore train climbs uphill near South Range WI. I am getting my picture taken by fellow engineer Bill Jelinek as he hangs out the window while passing (did I remember to smile?) Run-through power like this CSX SD50 and ex CR now CSX SD40-2 is common practice on the WC since these trains go through to the CSX and the power will normally stay on all the way unless to be refueled. Aug 2000
As stated before helpers are sometimes required to get tonnage out of town, here is a NS SD70/Dash 9 40CW duo doing the honors of getting Mr. Jelinek out of town. Aug. 2000
The WC runs a local train (LO64, sometimes referred to SIST, South Itasca to Stevens Point) out of Superior every day with interchange for the BNSF, CP, DMIR and CN. On this day the train is shown crossing the Amnicon River southbound out of Superior. A thunderstorm hampered my effort to catch trains in town on this day, but I got out of town to catch LO64 in the sun with the dark storm clouds in the background.
A CN potash train tackles the hill out of Superior in the same location as above, in the winter that wasn't, in the year 2000. Photo by Scott Carney
A two week old CN SD75I leads train T176 uphill near Hawthorne WI. on an early April 1999 morning. With the CN run-through trains you normally get the newer power on the CN roster which some of my fellow co-workers like, mainly because the units are equipped with a microwave oven to allow us to have some hot food on our trips once and a while.
This picture of a Middletown All-Rail ore train was taken at Hawthorne WI. This is the first passing siding (or last depending on direction of travel) that trains have to meet at on their journey down the WC Superior Sub once they depart Superior. June 2000
Sauntry Siding (Solon Spring WI.) is about as far one can chase the WC using parallel roads like Highway 53, after that the roads run perpendicular to the mainline, though with a little planning one can catch a train at Gordon WI. where Highway 53 comes close to the track again. This photo show yet another all-rail southbound at North Sauntry. Feb 1998.
To celebrate the 10 year anniversary of the Wisconsin Central existence they ran an number of employee trains around the system. Here we see two Algoma Central F-units departing Sauntry southbound for Stone Lake. Yours truly was the engineer for this train on this day in Oct. 1997. Photo by Scott Carney.
Another shot of the employee train at MP 422 near Gordon WI. The track to the left of the photo is the former CNW line, now removed to Spooner WI. It was at this point after the purchase of both CNW and Soo trackage out of Superior, the WC built a new connection between the CNW line and the Soo that you see the train on. Oct 1997. Photo by Scott Carney.
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