The Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad was the logical choice for HO modeler, Bruce Carpenter, when he was designing his large basement model train layout. The BNSF ticked all the right points: modern motive power, heavy mainline traffic, a huge variety of equipment, lots of staging yards and a prototype which served myriad industries large and small.
In Part 2 of his series on Bruce’s outstanding model train layout, Model Railroad Academy’s Allen Keller takes us on a behind-the-scenes tour of a section of BNSF mainline between Kansas City and Chicago. Bruce has constructed four staging yards which generate a massive amount of traffic. We follow the Illinois tract onboard a hot double-stack train with twin GE C44-9 wide cabs on the point. Through Williamsfield and its old time grain elevator, past the Illinois Edison Power Plant which consumes a huge amount of western coal from the BNSF and the ADM Milling Company, the long train winds through pastoral countryside with a golf course and several industrial switching areas. Two key features along the way are the Automobile Mixing Yard at Romeoville where autoracks are reloaded with cars and trucks bound for specific cities, and the always-active intermodel yard replete with trailer lifts in Willow Springs.
Enjoy the ride-along on this highly scenic model train layout behind two turbocharged Dash 9’s with sound decoders so real it seems like the real thing!
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