• No movement along the TP&W?

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in the American Midwest, including Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Kansas. For questions specific to a railroad company, please seek the appropriate forum.
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in the American Midwest, including Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Kansas. For questions specific to a railroad company, please seek the appropriate forum.

Moderator: railohio

  by dhaugh
I followed the TP&W across most of Illinois - from Watseka to Peoria - the other day and frankly was quite disappointed: not one movement anywhere. Only locomotive I saw was a UP switcher at an elevator as I neared Peoria. There was a large chemical plant near Gilman I believe, but otherwise very little business. Seemed like there were possible customers - DuPont in El Paso, for one. Am I wrong or just unlucky?
  by Will_S
I would say that you are unlucky, and in a big way. I drive US 24 fairly regularly from Forrest, IL, to Remington, IN, and as a result see TP&W action from time to time. It isn't the busiest line, and as a result a casual drive by may not yield any train sightings at all. About half of my trips pass without seeing any TP&W movements. However, if you can find a train in this area, they are generally short (20-30 cars), and are usually good for some interesting motive power (unpatched SP tunnel motors, ex-UP GP-38s, RailAmerica odds and ends...)

I don't really know how many customers the road has in this area, though. Incobrasa Industries has a large complex outside of Gilman, where they bring in soybeans in covered hoppers (green, reporting marks BRIX) and ship out soybean oil in tank cars (black, also BRIX). Some Incobrasa hoppers are stored on a siding closer to the Indiana line, as are some seemingly virgin coalporters (reporting marks RDLX). Cargill Gilman is a large facilitiy, as far as grain elevators go, but has its own old switcher and it interchanges with the CN on the old IC line that runs north/south, and not the TP&W. CNIC also switcher out Incobrasa, though there is a fair amount of interchange with the TP&W. There are a lot of old freight cars stored on the Kankakee, Beaverville, and Southern near Webster, but unless you like old BCOL boxcars patched for EEC, don't take the side trip. I believe Effner has a small grain elevator, and there are a large number of UP and CHTT centerbeam flats stored in this area. Crescent City has a cement facility which gets CSX and NOKL (ex-CNW) hoppers. There is a large rock quarry outside of Kentland that the TP&W services, and Solae (the old Central Soya) has an elevator in Goodman. Remington has an intermodal facility, but I've never seen any intermodal traffic on the main. I'm sure there are industries in Kentland and Watseka, but I don't know what they are.

Catching the TP&W is a hit and miss proposition. I don't know what their regular schedule is, nor do I have a scanner. I'm not really a railfan, so these are just my observations from a number of trips through the area. In my experience you are more likely to catch CNIC traffic in Gilman or UP trains in Watseka than the TP&W.
  by bn13814
TP&W's "through" trains are pretty much nocturnal affairs, especially in east central Illinois. These trains leave East Peoria late evening Su-Tu-Th arriving the Hoosierlift the next morning and leave the Hoosierlift late evening Mo-We-Fr, arriving EP the next morning. The Indiana Local works west from the Hoosierlift most days a week in the mornings and returns east in the early afternoons, though when and where the train is depends on how much work is performed enroute. Runs are also made to Logansport about once a week and to Lafayette to interchange with CSXT. Locals are called out of East Peoria to work east as far as Gilman perhaps two or three days per week, and more frequently during the grain rush.

As for East End customers, on-line grain elevators are at Reynolds, Wolcott, Remington, Goodland (2), Sheldon (2 - one is on KBSR), Crescent City, La Hogue, Piper City, Chatsworth, Fairbury, Weston, Meadows, Gridley and Cruger. Other customers are fertilizer dealers at Burnettsville, Idaville, Reynolds, Wolcott, Remington, Goodland (2), Kentland (on former Conrail line), Sheldon, Crescent City, Gilman, Fairbury (2), Chenoa and Gridley.

Incobrasa Industries is a big customer served at Gilman. Cole Hardwood ships lumber from Logansport on occasion and Kerry Ingredients at Gridley gets rice loads on a regular basis. Active interchanges are at Chatsworth (BLOL), Gilman (IC), Webster (KBSR), Reynolds (CSXT - takes place at Lafayette) and Logansport (NS and WSRY).

In the Peoria metropolitan area, Morton has Nestle USA/Libby's, Fort Transfer and Morton Buildings, East Peoria has East Peoria Materials (limestone and road salt) a currently dormant intermodal terminal and Peoria has ADM Grain, Peoria Barge Terminal, Peoria River Terminal and a customer switched for BNSF - Caterpillar's rubber facility. TP&W supposedly still has access to Keystone Steel & Wire's wire mill and also AmerenCILCO's E. D. Edwards Station, but does not service them. At Mapleton there are six users - Chemtura, Evonik Degussa, Corn Products (sorbitol), Lonza, Caterpillar and CF Industries.
  by IC&E6565
Last time I was down there I was fortunate enough to catch a decent size grain train, it was running with two retro-bate looking GP's, one a former CSX & the other a Former UP. Most of the time my friends and I go along the "Tip-up" We never see anything all the way between East Peoria & Gilman, I'm sure the person above giving the schedules is very correct about them running mostly at night in the way of the "road" trains. What does help, although they are sparsely located is the TP&W does have I think 3 "talking" defect detectors along their line, one at "La Hogue" which is just West of Gilman and another about 10 miles or so East of Peoria, not sure where the other one is. They use radio frequency 161.400 MHz for their "Road & Dispatcher" frequency and I believe their dispatcher is somewhere in Vermont due to the Rail-America ownership.