MNRR: Lifting and Tamping on LCRY
May 12, 2008
Portions of the rail line in Lake County have been notoriously soft ever since the day the railroad was laid. The ground over which the railroad runs is like clay with no bottom. Rocks have been dumped and the roadbed rebuilt more than a few times in more than a few places along the line, but still the tracks sink over time.
On May 12, 2008, a Maintenance of Way crew was working the line south of Westside Road near the community of Davis Creek, California. Using a tamper, they were lifting the track and pushing ballast under the ties with vibrating mechanical fingers (my word, I don't know what they are actually called), bringing things up to level and into alignment, abd following up with a spreader to properly distribute ballast shoulders along the road bed.
This area is historically bad enough that former operator Great Western Railroad left an older tamper and other equipment on a short single-ended siding in this location; this is the only siding between Lakeview and Alturas.
Just north of Westside road, a train load of ballast waited to be needed. Ed Almaguer kept watch in the 700.
At the end of the day, the train returned to Lakeview and the cars were set in a siding while the locomotive was tied down on the main stub north of N. 4th St. (Oregon Highway 140).