South Bend
July 22-26, 1987
248 Trains
Steve


Prologue

For most of the years I went train-watching, I was totally obsessed with the train count. It wasnít very important to me to note the origins, destinations, types of trains or why they were going by. All I wanted to do was spend the maximum amount of time possible alongside the tracks, notebook in hand, counting every train I saw. In the summer of 1987, I decided to go for the ultimate trip. I was determined that on this trip, I was going to set my all-time train count record. I took Thursday and Friday off from work and was going to spend four days and nights "living" at the tracks. I purchased a voice-activated tape recorder, a couple of spare tapes and a large analog clock just to help me count trains during the night. Included in the preparation was ice, food, cokes, extra notebook paper, extra pens, three large jugs full of water and the pump sprayer. I also had a tire-plugging kit which unfortunately, was needed a lot. Wednesday morning, I loaded up everything I needed and headed for work. At the end of the work day, I bolted from the office and headed straight to South Bend, Indiana, intending to stay there until late Sunday night. This was going to be fun!



Wednesday, July 22, 1987 

16:35   Head to South Bend from work.
17:10Go past the NW tracks, where I had to wait on a train last trip. No train this time.
17:30Driving thru Kokomo. Again, traffic isn't as bad as I thought it would be.
17:45Go past Grissom AFB. What I think is a C-130 is coming in to land.
18:55Hit the bypass.
19:00START at where the bypass goes over the tracks.
19:10Arrive at Olive.
19:20Weather: Warm & humid. Hazy. Temp about 85. No breeze.
19:25CSS Interurban from West (#1). That white powder still gets kicked up.
19:30Eat dinner. Lunchmeat, mustard, potato chips & a Big K diet cola.
19:40CR train from East (#2).
19:55CSS Interurban from East (#3).
20:05Fast Amtrak from West (#4).
20:15I wonder what the frequency will be like. I've never been up here in the middle of the week.
20:20CR train from West (#5). Also CR train from East (#6).
20:30Lubricate the pump sprayer.
20:45The pump sprayer works much better. Must take care of one of the most valuable pieces of train-watching equipment.
21:10CSS Interurban from West (#7).
21:15Change out of my work clothes. Feel normal, now.
21:20A "rail car" at the nearby plant has come down & hooked onto one of the covered hoppers on the siding.
21:25CR piggyback from West (#8). 3 U-boats.
21:35CR train from East (#9). Fairly short freight.
21:40The mosquitoes are getting fat tonight.
21:45CSS Interurban from East (#10). Has his light off until just before the crossing. Didn't blow his horn. I think I know why they have so many accidents.
22:05Put some OFF! On.
22:15Long CR piggyback from West (#11).
22:35CR land bridge train from West (#12). An extremely long train.
22:55I'm out for the first time with my voice-activated micro cassette recorder. I'm trying to figure out what the best volume setting is for middle-of-the-night train counts. I also bought a large clock so I won't have to keep turning on the dome light to see the time.
23:15CNW train from West (#13). A very long freight.
FREQUENCY = :19:36.

Thursday, July 23, 1987 

:20CR piggyback from West (#14).
:30Well, I have a voice activated recorder & an enormous clock right next to me, so I shouldn't have any excuse for missing any trains during the night.
:45"In for the night". Sleep in the car.
:55CNW train from West (#15).
1:15CR piggyback from East (#16).
1:25CR piggyback from West (#17).
1:45CR piggyback from West (#18).
1:50It's a very warm & humid night. Having trouble sleeping.
2:45CR piggyback from West (#19).
2:50CR piggyback from East (#20).
3:05CR piggyback from East (#21). Also CR/UP train from West (#22).
3:15CR piggyback from East (#23). Fairly short.
3:20CR land bridge train from West (#24).
3:25CR piggyback from East (#25).
3:40CR piggyback from East (#26).
4:05CR piggyback from East (#27).
5:00CR land bridge train from East (#28).
5:10CR train from West (#29).
5:15CSS Interurban from West (#30). Also CR piggyback from East (#31).
5:40CR piggyback from East (#32).
6:00CSS Interurban from East (#33).
6:05CR steel train from East (#34).
7:05CR piggyback from West (#35).
n.t.Piggyback from West (#36). I was completely incoherent when I gave the time.
8:40Wake up.
8:45CNW train from West (#37). All hoppers.
9:10Weather: Warm, sunny, hazy. Some breeze. Forecast is for hot & humid weather all weekend.
9:30CR train from West (#38).
9:40One CR U-boat from East (#39).
9:45Well, I missed 5 trains last night. With the recorder running, at least I know how many I've missed.
9:55A CR maintenance truck drives down along the tracks from the east towards me. He goes south on Smilax road.
10:15CR train from East (#40).
10:25Drive back to Olive + one-half.
10:45CR train from West (#41).
10:50Have shaved & taken a shower. Feel better. The only evidences of a future steel mill here are two poles with yellow streamers in the field across from the CR tracks.
10:55CR train from East (#42). Also CSS Interurban from West (#43).
11:00Weather: Sunny, hazy, hot & humid. Going to be a very sweaty weekend.
11:35Leave Olive.
11:40See Amtrak from distance. From East (#44).
11:45At Quince Rd. UP train from east (#45).
12:00Stop at the Amoco station for ice.
12:05CR train from East (#46). Arrive at Arnold St.
12:10GT train from East (#47).
12:15Leave Arnold St.
12:30Pause briefly at Pine Rd.
12:35At Pear Rd. Conrail is doing some kind of construction on the crossing.
12:40At Olive. CR train from East (#48).
FREQUENCY = :22:05.
12:45Arrive at Olive + one-half.
12:50Weather: Clear, but hazy. Hot & humid. Temp about 90. A good day to sweat.
12:55A South Shore "hy-rail" goes by from the west.
13:00CR train from East (#49). Either a small bumblebee or a large sweat bee was pestering me.
13:05Looks like the frequency is down a little at this time of the week, but not by much.
13:15Starting to cloud up a little. Good. Maybe it will cool down.
13:40Find some date nails on the South Shore tracks from 1959.
13:55A CR hy-rail goes by from the west. He got off the tracks down at the crossing.
14:00Back at Olive. Weather: Still hot & humid, but looks like it's getting a little grayer. Hard to tell.
14:05Another CR hy-rail goes by from the east. He was on the same tracks as the first one. They must be using this "quiet" time to check out the tracks.
14:20CNW train from East (#50).
14:25Eat lunch.
15:15Changing my oil.
15:30Nothing like a lot of trains to pass the time.
15:35I can't figure out why all these flies like to hang out in my car.
15:45CR train from West (#51). 4 engines, 96 cars. 51 trains in 20:45.
FREQUENCY = :24:25.
16:20CR train from West (#52). One chugging big U-boat & 120 hopper cars.
16:25CSS freight from West (#53). 2 engines, 3 cars & a caboose.
17:00Very long CR land bridge train from West (#54).
17:30CR train from West (#55).
17:45CR train from West (#56).
17:50CR train from East (#57).
17:55CSS freight from East (#58). Horn sounds like Amtrak.
18:00Weather: Sunny, warm & humid. Temp about 85. Breezy.
18:05CR train from West (#59). 9 engines & 42 gondolas & various types of flat cars.
FREQUENCY = :23:28.
18:20I start killing off some of these flies. No more mister nice guy.
18:45Arrange things in the car.
18:55Yawn.
19:0059 trains in 24:00.
FREQUENCY = :24:24.
19:15Go check out the CR access road between Olive & Terre Coupee.
19:20CR train from East (#60). I'm on the access road & the engineer gave me the "thumbs up" sign.
19:25CSS Interurban from West (#61).
19:30There is a hotbox detector here at Terre Coupee. Wonder why I can't hear it on the scanner.
19:35Back at Olive.
19:40This evening is exactly like last evening. Hazy, humid, still air. The sun is an orange ball in the sky & will disappear long before reaching the horizon.
19:50CSS Interurban from East (#62).
20:15CR piggyback from West (#63).
20:25Put a "plug" in the left front tire. My tire plugging tool broke, but I managed to get the tire fixed. I doubt if it will last long.
20:30Just realized that I haven't seen the Amtrak yet.
20:50Amtrak from West (#64).
21:10The Conrail has definitely been slow today.
21:40Very fast one car CSS Interurban from West (#65).
22:00CR train from West (#66). Also CSS Interurban from East (#67).
22:05CR train from East (#68).
FREQUENCY = :23:54.
22:10Weather: Clear, but very humid. Temp about 75. Slight breeze. A pretty nice evening.
22:35CR piggyback from West (#69).
23:10Very long CR piggyback from West (#70).
23:35CNW/UP train from West (#71). Going fairly slow.
23:55Long fast CR piggyback from West (#72).

Friday, July 24, 1987 

:00Have moved the car back to just west of the milepost signs.
:05Looks like the crossing gates at Terre Coupee crossing are stuck on.
:15CR steel train from East (#73). 2 chugging U-boats.
:35"Hit the sack". Sleep in the car.
1:00CR train from West (#74). Also CR train from East (#75).
1:05#74 has come to a stop.
1:20CR piggyback from East (#76).
2:05Slow CR piggyback from West (#77). All eastbounds are coming to a stop for some reason.
2:25CR train from East (#78).
2:45CR piggyback from East (#79).
2:55CR piggyback from West (#80). Also, slow CR piggyback from East (#81).
3:45CR piggyback from East (#82).
3:55CR piggyback from East (#83).
4:20CR piggyback from East (#84).
4:30It's more comfortable sleeping weather tonight. Not as warm & humid.
4:50I thought mosquitoes had a bedtime.
5:10 CR land bridge train from East (#85).
5:30CR train from East (#86). I said some things I couldn't understand when listening to the tape.
6:00CSS Interurban from East (#87).
7:20CR train from East (#88). I think that was the time.
7:50CR train from West (#89).
8:45CR piggyback from West (#90).
8:50Up for the day. Weather: Clear, sunny & hazy. Temp about 75. Some breeze.
9:10CR train from East (#91).
9:20CR train from West (#92).
9:35I missed 6 trains last night. The tape recorder doesn't lie.
9:40ATSF train from West (#93).
FREQUENCY = :24:57.
10:05Have shaved and cleaned up a little.
10:10Leave Olive.
10:15On Pear Rd. Train from East (#94).
10:30At South Bend station. CR train from West (#95).
10:35Get a South Shore schedule.
10:55Have stopped at K-Mart to get another tire plugging kit & stopped at Kroger for more cokes, ice & breakfast bars.
11:00Arrive at Arnold St. That pitiful plugging job I did last night on the left front tire seems to be holding up fine. Amazing.
11:10Arranging things. The 20 liter water jug leaked a bunch of water last night.
11:15A GT maintenance truck drives up.
11:20CR train from West (#96). He had been sitting down by the station for awhile. Also Amtrak from East (#97).
11:25The GT maintenance truck gets on the tracks, heading west. For some reason, he waited until the Conrail train was gone. Leave Arnold St.
11:30At South Bend station. The South Shore is here.
11:35CR piggyback from East (#98).
11:40Leave South Bend station.
11:45Behind Kroger throwing trash in a dumpster. Hear train from East (#99). CR. Paced him all the way to Pine Rd.
12:00Arrive at Olive.
12:05Drive down to Olive + one-half.
12:15My left front tire is flat. I guess I just asked too much of that "plug" I put in last evening.
12:20CSS Interurban from East (#100).
12:30A CR crane & a hy-rail goes by from the east.
12:50Have plugged the left front tire again. More successful this time. I'm still amazed how long the other "plug" lasted. Also I had to clean out the back of the car which had a lot of water in it.
13:10CR/CNW train from East (#101).
13:30Take a shower & wash my hair.
13:35CR train from East (#102).
13:45Lounge about in my swim trunks & spray myself with water. Weather: Sunny/cloudy with a pretty good breeze. Also humid. Temp about 85.
13:50CR train from East (#103). Chugging U-boat.
14:05CNW train from West (#104). Fairly short. Also CR train from East (#105).
14:10A bi-plane flies by then does a few fancy turns.
14:15Drive back to Olive.
14:20CR train from East (#106).
14:25Eat lunch. Lunchmeat & potato chips.
14:30CR/CNW train from East (#107).
14:45Getting windy.
14:55CR train from West (#108).
15:00ATSF train from East (#109).
FREQUENCY = :24:13.
15:35CR train from West (#110).
16:10CR train from West (#111). Jim Drives up.
16:45Fairly short CR train from East (#112).
17:00Weather: Sunny, breezy & warm. Temp about 85. There is more actual blue sky now, than since I've been here.
17:10CR train from East (#113).
18:00CR train from West (#114).
18:20Put some more air in the left front tire. The base broke off from the pump.
19:0048 hours, 114 trains.
FREQUENCY = :25:15.
19:25CSS Interurban from West (#115).
19:45CNW train from East (#116).
19:55CSS Interurban from East (#117). Also CR piggyback from West (#118). A loud motorcycle blasts by.
20:05CR train from East (#119).
20:10Jim heads for home.
20:15Fast Amtrak from West (#120).
20:45CNW train from West (#121).
21:10CSS Interurban from West (#122).
21:25CR/CNW train from East (#123).
21:30Weather: Clear, calm, still humid. Temp about 75. I can see some flashes of lightning to the north.
21:40CSS Interurban from East (#124).
22:00CR piggyback from West (#125).
22:05Listen to some music.
22:20CR piggyback from East (#126). I could see him to the east for awhile. I wonder if he was picking up or setting out cars at the South Shore yards at Pine Rd.
22:55CR train from West (#127).
23:15A car pulls in on the access road on the other side of the South Shore tracks.
23:25The car leaves.
23:45Things have slowed down considerably.
23:55CR piggyback from West (#128).

Saturday, July 25, 1987 

:20The lightning to the north is getting closer & brighter.
:25CR train from West (#129).
:40The lightning is more towards the west, now. A storm could foul my efforts to count trains with the voice activated recorder.
1:05Things sure are slow on the Conrail tonight.
1:25Long fast CR piggyback from East (#130). 3 U-boats. N.L.
1:35CR train from West (#131).
1:45Another long fast CR piggyback from East (#132). Also CR piggyback from West (#133).
1:55CR piggyback from East (#134). Also CR piggyback from West (#135). 6 trains in 30 minutes. Amazing.
2:10Long fast CR piggyback from East (#136).
2:20In for the night.
2:30CR piggyback from East (#137). Also CR piggyback from West (#138).
2:40CR piggyback from East (#139). Makes 10 trains in 1:15.
4:05CR piggyback from East (#140).
4:25Train from East (#141).
6:15CR train from West (#142).
6:40CSS Interurban from East (#143).
7:15CR train from East (#144).
7:20Up for the day. Weather: Mostly sunny, breezy. Temp about 75.
7:45Well, I missed 7 trains last night. Seem to do a little worse each night.
7:50CR piggyback from West (#145).
FREQUENCY = :25:10.
8:10Leave Olive.
8:20At Pear Rd. CR train from East (#146). Mostly hopper cars.
8:35Stop at the Amoco station for gas & ice.
8:40Arrive at Arnold St.
8:45CR land bridge train from West (#147). Had 23 articulated flat cars, or 115 individual flat cars. 230 containers.
9:00CR steel train from East (#148). Also CNW/CR train from West (#149). The CNW was an SD45.
9:15CR/CNW engines on GT tracks. From East (#150).
9:20CR train from East (#151).
9:25CR train from East (#152). Also, the CNW/CR engines with a short train on GT tracks. From West (#153).
9:30I think I smell a bakery somewhere.
9:35CR piggyback from West (#154).
9:40Have been talking to Bill Boyce, a railfan I met here two weeks ago.
9:50CR piggyback from West (#155).
9:55Leave Arnold St.
10:10At Pine Rd. CR train from West (#156).
10:20Arrive at Olive. Just missed the CSS Interurban. From West (#157). Also, very fast hy-rail on CR tracks from west.
10:30Weather: Sunny, hot & humid. Temp about 80.
10:50One-car CSS Interurban from East (#158).
FREQUENCY = :24:14.
11:15I'm waiting on the Amtrak, so I can take a shower.
11:30Amtrak from East (#159).
11:35Arrive at Olive + one-half. There has been a helicopter flying back & forth. Flying pretty low.
11:45CR train from East (#160).
12:05Have showered, shaved, washed my hair & brushed my teeth. Feel much better.
12:10That helicopter is crop dusting.
12:15CR train from East (#161).
12:20Have lunch. Lunchmeat.
12:30CR light engine move from West (#162).
12:35CR train from East (#163).
12:40Weather: Hot & humid. Still sunny, but itís trying to become overcast.
12:45CR train from East (#164). Slowing. 2 SD50s.
12:50CSS freight from West (#165).
12:55My old tennis shoes should be declared a health hazard.
13:00CNW/CR train from East (#166).
FREQUENCY = :23:51.
13:35I wonder just what these flies find so interesting about my ankles.
13:40CR train from West (#167). Also CNW/UP train from East (#168).
13:55CR train from West (#169). Also, slowish CSS Interurban from West (#170).
14:00CR train from East (#171).
14:05ATSF/CR train from West (#172). Had a "SF" cowl unit leading.
FREQUENCY = :23:24.
14:20CSS "piggyback" from East (#173). One engine running long hood forward, one flat car with two truck trailers & CSS&SBRR caboose #001.
14:25CR hy-rail goes by from the west.
14:30Earlier, I put a breakfast bar on top of an ant hill. They donít seem too interested.
14:35The CR tracks right here donít seem to be in very good shape. The cars bounce & rock a lot.
14:50A motorcyclist rides by.
14:55Weather: Has returned to all sunny. Hot & humid. Breezy.
15:05Drive back to Olive. CR train from East (#174). Had all NW hoppers loaded with coal.
15:25CSS Interurban from East (#175). Ties the record.
15:30Frequencies: Wednesday, 13 trains in 5:00 = :23:05. Thursday, 59 trains in 24:00 = :24:24. Friday, 56 trains in 24:00 = :25:43. Today, 47 trains in 15:30 = :19:47. Simply busier on the weekend.
15:35CR/CNW train from East (#176). A new train watching record. Another CNW SD45.
15:45CR land bridge train from West (#177).
16:15Iíve gotten somewhat sunburned.
16:50At Olive + one-half. CR train from East (#178).
17:00Back at Olive.
17:10Just noticed that my speedometer needle doesnít come to rest on the peg.
17:25CR train from West (#179). Had a loud horn.
17:30CR light engine move from East (#180).
17:45CR train from West (#181).
17:50CR train from East (#182).
18:05CSS Interurban from West (#183). One car.
FREQUENCY = :23:18.
18:15Iíve seen 23 trains in the last 6 hours. Amazing.
18:20A CR maintenance van drives along the access road from Terre Coupee to Olive. He starts to drive towards me, then hesitates, then drives on up to the highway.
18:30Weather: Clear, warm & humid, although not as bad as itís been the last two days. Breezy. Temp about 85. Very nice. Should be a pleasant evening.
18:40CNW train from East (#184).
18:50CSS Interurban from East (#185).
18:55CR train from West (#186).
19:0072 hours, 186 trains.
FREQUENCY = :23:14.
19:10I go off to get rid of 12 ounces, then go to the cooler & open up another 12 ounces.
19:20Wouldnít be at all surprised to see Bob drive up.
19:40Iím walking all over the place with the tripod & 400mm lens trying to line up shots.
19:50A jogger jogs by.
20:00Shooting pictures of the sunset.
20:05CSS Interurban from West (#187).
20:15Amtrak from West (#188).
20:30The left rear tire is suddenly almost flat. I couldnít find the leak, although I did find three nails. Wonderful.
20:35CSS Interurban from East (#189). Didnít blow for the crossing.
20:45CR piggyback from West (#190).
20:50Put air in the tire & put the tire back on the car. Must have parked on one of the nails just wrong. Iíll leave the tire tools & jack out where I can get to them.
21:00CNW/UP train from West (#191).
21:05Leave Olive.
21:20Stop at the Amoco station to put air in all of my tires.
21:25Sure looks like a shady side of town here.
21:30Swing thru McDonaldís for something to eat.
21:50Arrive at Olive. I drive on past, because I want to see what it looks like to drive up to this place at night.
21:55Back at Olive. It looks like Iím lit up by the headlights of cars approaching from the south. CR piggyback from West (#192).
FREQUENCY = :23:25.
22:20CR piggyback from West (#193).
23:15Iím pretty tired. Iíll probably miss a lot of trains tonight. Also Iíd like to be at Arnold St. as early as possible in the morning.
23:20Very long CR train from West (#194). The whole train was auto racks.
23:25My left rear tire is nearly flat. Iíll wait until tomorrow to fix it. I must have driven thru a nail farm somewhere.
23:40CR train from West (#195).
23:50CR piggyback from East (#196). Also, I think Iíve just broken the record for the longest trip. Last May I had a trip of 76:45.
23:55CR train from West (#197). One engine, running long hood forward.

Sunday, July 26, 1987 

:00Weather: Clear, very still, fairly cool. Temp about 75. No moon.
:05CR train from East (#198).
:10CR train from West (#199).
:20CR piggyback from West (#200). Also CR train from East (#201).
FREQUENCY = :23:05.
1:00In for the night. Sleeping in the car. Put out the daddy long leg spider, first.
1:10I miss Butterscotch.
1:25CR piggyback from West (#202).
1:55CR piggyback from East (#203).
2:05CR piggyback from West (#204).
2:10CR piggyback from East (#205).
2:20CR piggyback from East (#206).
2:40CR piggyback from East (#207).
4:00CR piggyback from East (#208).
6:45Up for the day. Weather: There is a big storm rolling in.
7:00CR piggyback from West (#209).
7:05Raining very hard.
7:10Looks like it could do this all day.
7:15Missed 7 trains last night.
7:20There is a little bit of a lull in the rain, so I jump out of the car & air up the left rear tire as quick as I can. Also, the South Shore signals look like they are messed up. Leave Olive.
7:25Seeing lots of neat lightning.
7:35At Pine Rd. CR train from East (#210).
7:45Stop at McDonaldís for something to eat.
7:55Stop at the Amoco station to put air in the left rear tire.
8:00Arrive at Arnold St. Bill Boyce is here.
8:25Once again, I try to find the leak in the left rear tire.
8:45Tire is plugged. Could only find one nail.
8:50Leave Arnold St.
9:00Stop at Pine Rd.
9:05Fast CR/CNW piggyback from West (#211).
9:10Move on.
9:15At Pear Rd. CSS Interurban from West (#212). Going very slow because of signal problem.
FREQUENCY = :24:25.
9:25Arrive at Olive. Weather: Clearing up. The sun will be shining soon. Temp about 75.
9:35My left rear tire is going flat again.
9:40CR train from East (#213).
9:50CR piggyback from West (#214).
9:55CSS Interurban from East (#215).
10:00CR train from East (#216).
10:05CR train from West (#217). Had a Santa Fe caboose.
10:10CNW/UP train from East (#218). Both engines were smoking.
10:15Drive down to Olive + one-half. CR train from West (#219).
10:20Weather: Sunny, warm & humid. Temp about 80. Also, I hear a bunch of sirens towards New Carlisle.
10:25CR train from West (#220). All center door hoppers. Also extremely long CR land bridge from East (#221). Heís slowing down. Wish I had counted the cars.
10:30Well, I had the left rear tire off the car AGAIN. Still couldnít find the leak. Apparently, the nail I took out of it wasnít the problem.
11:00CR train from West (#222). Had a Chessie caboose.
11:05CNW train from West (#223).
11:20CNW/CR train from West (#224).
11:45Go back to Olive.
11:50A CR crane & a gondola go by from the west.
12:00One car CSS Interurban from west (#225).
12:10Amtrak from East (#226).
FREQUENCY = :23:40.
12:20CR train from east (#227).
12:40CNW/CR train from East (#228). Going fairly slow.
12:50ATSF train from East (#229). Had two engines with the new SF paint scheme.
13:10Weather: Mostly clear, sunny, warm & humid. Nice breeze.
13:20CSS Interurban from East (#230). Horn seemed very loud.
13:25CR train from East (#231).
13:40Fast CR hy-rail from west.
13:45Eat lunch. Lunchmeat.
13:50CR train from East (#232).
14:00Try once more to find the leak in the left rear tire.
14:35CSS Interurban from West (#233).
15:05Found the hole in the left rear tire. Itís in the sidewall. Put a plug in the sidewall. Wonder if I can do that.
15:10CR train from West (#234).
15:20CSS Interurban from East (#235).
15:25CR light engine move from West (#236).
15:40Weather: Has become mostly cloudy. Breezy. Temp about 85.
15:45Iíve gotten pretty sunburned on this trip.
15:55Slow CR train from East (#237).
16:00A big CR maintenance truck & a pickup truck drive by me & go down the access road.
16:05Talking to the guy in the pickup truck. He asked me if I was a trainmaster! He said that they are setting out a bad gondola a mile west of here. He & the other guy are going to "assist" & help with the air test.
16:10CR train from West (#238).
16:20Iíve changed the oil, & put 3 plugs in two tires. I should open up a service station.
16:40CR train from East (#239). Had an ATSF caboose.
FREQUENCY = :23:31.
17:40The left rear tire seems to be holding up.
17:45Weather: Mostly clear, breezy. Temp about 75.
17:55Just saw the biggest leaf Iíve ever seen. Must be about 14 inches long & 12 inches wide.
18:00A cloud cover is moving in & the wind is starting to kick up. CSS Interurban from East (#240).
18:25Arranging things in the car.
18:35Having a real lull.
18:45I wouldnít mind staying out here another night.
18:50CSS Interurban from East (#241).
19:0096 hours, 241 trains.
FREQUENCY = :23:54.
19:10Looks like thereís going to be neat sunset, after all.
19:30CR train from East (#242).
19:40Long CR freight from West (#243).
19:55CNW/CR train from West (#244). Had 6 engines. Another long freight.
20:00I never know when to leave.
20:05CSS Interurban from West (#245).
20:30The Amtrak is running late.
20:35Amtrak from West (#246).
20:40CSS Interurban from East (#247).
FREQUENCY = :23:43.
21:05CNW/CR train from East (#248).
21:10Leave Olive.
21:20Pause briefly at Pine Rd.
21:35STOP at Olive St. crossing.


Epilogue

Well, there it is. Notes of my all-time train-watching record of 248 trains. Even with the voice-activated tape recorder and a large clock, I still missed 25 trains. Two years later, Dave and I went on a trip to Bolo Hill where I learned that an analog clock was not the best way to tell the time in the middle of the night. A digital clock is better. I spent a total of 98 hours and 35 minutes at the tracks which is a train frequency of one train every 23 minutes and 51 seconds, and I still didnít know when to leave. I actually wanted to stay another night! Notable events of the trip were all those flat tires and the hot, humid weather. Earlier in the year, I bought four "premium" steel-belted tires from a major oil company and I really donít know if it was the design of the tread or if I constantly drove through nails, but I remember having many flat tires during the summer. The pump sprayer was very handy for keeping cool in the hot weather. With the weather being what it was, I went through a total of nine 12-packs of Big K diet cola! It was a fun trip but I donít think I could ever do that againÖ




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