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Signs of the recession - Minneapolis May 12th.

How times have changed. May last year was when I was starting to get keen on Trainspotting again. The railroads were busy and there was always lots to see. Now things are different. Locos stand idle, cars have been put into storage and trains are less. This trip out to Northrtown yard was a perfect example of that. It was 12 months ago now that I first went out to Northtown. It was very busy with switchers shuttling about and a couple of through freights coming passing by. Not so this time as the fist thing that struck me as I crossed the bridge over the yard was the huge amount of locos just stood doing nothing.
locos doing nothing
Everywhere you looked there was loco after loco, doing nothing. Last year when I was there I could see a line of green Geeps waiting to be returned to their leasing company. But here now were I don't know how many locos stood idle carrying BNSF reporting marks. Geeps, SD's, you name it it's probably stood idle here.
more locos doing nothing
It was really quite depressing. I thought I was going to have to cheat and make it look like things were hapenning. Like with this shot of a pair of SD 75's, apart from the fact the lights are off there's nothing to give away that fact that they are idle. They could just be waiting to be given a warrant to head out onto the Staples sub...
more doing nothing
Then joy of joys. I head the rumble of loco engines and a pair of UP Geeps passed though the scene. Even so this was only a short freight working. Still it was better than nothing.
UP GP38-2's
Still all was not lost there was some activity in the yard. The yard switchers were scooting about here and there. But really still not a lot of activity.
switcher no. 7821
switcher 2716
With that I decided to make a move to another part of town. But an accident on 169 put paid to that and with time running short I decided to take a look at Plymouth industrial park over on I-494 to see if the local switcher was working there. With luck it was. The crew were waiting to head back to Northtown with just a couple of cars.
waiting to head back
There you go slim pickings on this day May is turning into a bust as well as April.