This Space for Rent

These are not the Eng!s you’re looking for

At around 3:20 this afternoon, I decided that I'd take a little walk down to the Bybee overpass so I could see the 13 minutes late (according to the Amtrak website) northbound Coast Starlight zip by on the final leg of its trip into Portland. The sun had been popping into and out of the clouds all day, and when I reached the bridge it was out and shining brightly, so I thought that this might be a good day for taking more pictures of blue and silver engines.

It was around 3:30 and a couple of southbound trains were parked on the mainline leaving enough room for a northbound train to thread the needle between them, so I figured that I'd have about 10 minutes before the train came hurling into sight. I settled down and waited for it to appear.

And waited.

And waited.

Eventually, the Brooklyn Yard switchers (Y1309 [yellow] and Y1458 [espee grey]) came down past the bridge, turned around, then headed back into the yard.

But there was still no Coast Starlight. I dithered for a second, and saw the switchers coming back with a long line of empty container flats, so I crossed over to the other side of the bridge and took a few more pictures of them (the sun picked this moment to pop briefly out from behind the clouds, which is why the next picture looks a little less gloomy than the first one.)

The switchers parked on the yard lead for about 5 minutes, then pushed the flatcars back into the yard. It was around 4:15 now, and I had a batch of bread rising at home which needed to be punched down no later than 4:30, so I had to leave pretty much immediately. I went home, punched down the bread, wedged it into breadpans for the second rise, did a couple of errands, then, out of curiosity, decided to look at the online arrivals page to see just how late #14 was when it reached portland, and saw:

The scheduled arrival time is 3:40 pm. Presently, no further information is available. Please check back later for updated information.

Well, that explains why the train never showed up. I wonder if one of the twinkies lost a traction motor between Oregon City and Brooklyn Yard?