A to Z challengeย 

MILK TRAIN – In the U.S., milk trains ran from the countryside to the cities making numerous stops at minor depots to pick up cans of fresh milk, making them a colloquial expression for a very slow train.

I don’t see milk trains here in lumber country, let alone any with #RailArt, but it’s fun to imagine a time in the past when these were a frequent occurrence. ๐Ÿ˜€

I call these first two,ย  #MoustacheMan and #MonsterEyes

Monk, Mere and the Miscellaneous are pretty obvious!

A to Z CHALLENGE ~ L is for LINK & PIN

LINK & PIN An obsolete method of coupling rail cars, consisting of manually dropping the coupling pin into the draw bar as the cars joined. Extremely hazardous to the brakemen of its day, it was outlawed in the United States by the Railroad Safety Appliance Act of 1893.

Today’s #RailArt was bright and “L” related. Half the trains around here have empty LUMBER cars, but only until they get to town and then leave full ๐Ÿ˜€


K is for KODACHROME. Is the song stuck in your head yet. I know it was mine right after hearing that single word even though I was really young when it was released, it stayed popular for many years and is still played on some classic rock and roll stations ๐Ÿ˜€ So, I had to go with this definition for today! Read all the way to the end of the definition and that too brings its own little laugh ๐Ÿ˜€

Per Wikipedia Kodachrome is theย  Southern Pacific Santa Fe Railroad‘s red, yellow, and black paint scheme, which resembled the packaging of Kodachrome (a KODAK registered trademark) color transparency film. ย It is a method of color transparency, but more commonly known as a type of color film the company started marketing in 1935.

The same color scheme was instituted when the merger between Southern Pacific and Santa Fe was assumed to be approved. Hundreds of locomotives were painted in Kodachrome colors before the merger was denied. ๐Ÿ˜€

Just for some added nostalgia for some of you, here’s the song Lyrics by Paul Simon to make you smile. It really had a catchy tune. ๐Ÿ˜€

Paul Simon was working on a song with the title “Coming Home” when the word “Kodachrome” came to him. He had no idea what it meant, but knew it would make for a much more interesting song than “Coming Home.” The song became an appreciation of the things that color our world, and a look at how our memories are framed to fit our worldviews.

Paul Simon YouTube

When I think back
On all the crap I learned in high school
It’s a wonder
I can think at all
And though my lack of education
Hasn’t hurt me none
I can read the writing on the wall
They give us those nice bright colors
They give us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the world’s a sunny day, oh yeah
I got a Nikon camera
I love to take a photograph
So mama, don’t take my Kodachrome away
If you took all the girls I knew
When I was single
And brought ’em all together for one night
I know they’d never match
My sweet imagination
Everything looks worse in black and white
They give us those nice bright colors
They give us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the world’s a sunny day, oh yeah
I got a Nikon camera
I love to take a photographSo mama, don’t take my Kodachrome away
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome away
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome away
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome away
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome away
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome
Leave your boy so far from home
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome away
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome
Mama, don’t take my Kodachrome away (ok)


A to Z challengeย 

Another good term to learn is INERTIA.

INERTIA is the force that holds the universe together. Literally. Without it, things would fall apart.

This is one of those terms that a TRUE definition can be clear as mud so I’ll offer you up a couple choices ๐Ÿ˜€

A) “The property of matter by which it retains its state of rest or its velocity along a straight line so long as it is not acted upon by an external force.”

B) “Inertia is the resistance of any physical object to any change in its velocity. This includes changes to the object’s speed, or direction of motion. An aspect of this property is the tendency of objects to keep moving in a straight line at a constant speed, when no forces act upon them.”

C) “Inertia is a passive property and does not enable a body to do anything except oppose such active agents as forces and torques.

But Newton’s First law, the Law of Inertia really says it best for the layman “if a body is at rest or moving at a constant speed in a straight line, it will remain at rest or keep moving in a straight line at constant speed unless it is acted upon by a force.”

All that said, there are no #RailArt pictures for Inertia itself so I’ll offer up these random images ๐Ÿ˜€


HELL ON WHEELS was a GREAT show that we loved! After all, who doesn’t love Anson Mount? :SIGH: ๐Ÿ˜€ And even though it was fictional, it WAS based on real life!

HELL ON WHEELS – A traveling assembly of business establishments for railroad workers of the Union Pacific during the construction of the transcontinental railroad. Businesses typically included purveyors of equipment and supplies, as well as gambling houses, saloons, dance halls, and brothels.

Now I obviously wasn’t around when HELL ON WHEELS happened and #RailArt wasn’t even invented yet so we’ll have to settle for these images ๐Ÿ˜€


A to Z challengeย 

GOLDEN SPIKE – The ceremonial spike driven that joined the rails of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869 at Promontory Summit, Utah Territory.

GREENWICH MEAN TIME – The time as measured on the prime meridian running through Greenwich, England, and used internationally as a standard calculation.

While I don’t have pictures of either, they are crucial railway terms.ย  I do have these pictures though ๐Ÿ˜€


A to Z challengeย 

The first term I want to share with you is FIREBOX – The fire-chamber of a locomotive-boiler. It is jacketed with a water-chamber to prevent radiation of heat. The fire-box door may also be double and have a circulation of water through the hinges. A partition in the box sometimes divides the fire-space into two parts, and, being full of water, increases the fire surface. But, of course I don’t have a picture of this ๐Ÿ™‚

It is near impossible to find #RailArt on a lumber FREIGHT CAR, but it’s almost a given that it will also have cargo cars that do ๐Ÿ˜€ FREIGHT TRAIN – A FREIGHT train is constructed and used for the carriage of merchandise.


A to Z challengeย 

I bet you didn’t see this coming, but “E” is for engine ๐Ÿ˜€

ENGINE ~ A machine which acts both to power and operate.

There is a town north of us called Junction City where I took this picture. Yep, you guessed it, there are A LOT of trains with a junction. The trains run right through the center of town. You literally have to pull over to let trains pass.

There is also a #RailArt term called #EndToEnd that is pretty simple to understand. The graffiti is LITERALLY painted from END TO END.

And while these last two aren’t END TO END they do fit our letter E.

A to Z CHALLENGE ~ D is for Departure

DEPARTURE YARD: Like a staging track to ready locomotives, departure yards assemble cuts of cars to ready them for an outbound train. I have a great picture of a departure yard :somewhere: :sigh: I looked for hours and could not find it, so I was just going to go with the one below where the #RailArt begins with a “D” even though I don’t know what it stands for AND then I looked one more time and found it! ๐Ÿ˜€

The day I took this picture the dispatch yard was almost empty, but it’s normally FULL of lumber cars, both full and empty as well as a bunch of box cars full of #RailArt.

Another “D” would be for DEPOT. This is a preserved depot in the same small Montana forest town lumber yard that yesterday’s caboose is in.


A to Z challengeย 

CABOOSE A car which is attached to the rear of a freight train and serves as office and headquarters for the conductor and trainmen while they are in transit. Sometimes called cabin car, way car, hack, shanty, or crummy.

Major railroads have discontinued the use of cabooses, except on some short-run freight and maintenance trains. It has been replaced by the end-of-train device, a portable steel box about the size of a suitcase that’s attached to the back of the train’s last car.

While this first picture doesn’t have any actual #RailArt on it, it is a rare sighting as cabooses are far and few between these days. It has been repainted from its traditional red to this bright white and repurposed as a Library in the Timber Country of Montana.

Once again in the picture below the #RailArt is colorful and I’m really not sure what it spells, but it is a car from the CANADIAN Pacific Railway.