On October 31-November 3, 2002, the Southern Appalachia Railway Museum operated a charter train for railroad mileage collectors over the Farmrail, Grainbelt, Hollis & Eastern, and Wichita, Tillman & Jackson routes in western Oklahoma and Texas. The train used two former VIA equipment (part of the 1954 CC&F cars from the 5437-5654 series) that Farmrail acquired several years ago and have refurbished, along with two private cars for High Iron Travel, the Cimmaron River and the Caritas. Riders came from 26 states, Washington DC, and Canada.
On Thursday, October 31, the train departed Wichita Falls, Texas for Altus, Oklahoma via the Wichita, Tillman & Jackson. About 80 miles of former Missouri-Katy-Texas trackage was covered as we passed through the Red River Valley oil boom and ranch country. The WT&J started operations over this line in January 1991 after acquiring it from Union Pacific. Upon arriving at Altus, the train switched power and proceeded about 15 miles to Duke, OK, via the Hollis & Eastern. Passengers were ferried to Altus, Oklahoma, for the night.
Friday, Novermber 1, we returned from Duke to Altus on the Hollis & Eastern. At Altus we turned north through the Wichita Mountains along trackage built by the Kansas City, Mexico & Orient, later operated by the Santa Fe, and operated today by Farmrail. We traveled 66 scenic miles at 10-15mph to Clinton, Oklahoma. After a short service stop, we turned west for an evening roundtrip to Elk City, Oklahoma, over former Rock Island trackage. Thanks go to Naurine Lennox for providing dinner.
On Saturday, November 2, we made a roundtrip from the Farmrail station in Clinton, Oklahoma, to Enid, Oklahoma, and back along the route of the former Frisco, about 190 miles roundtrip. We made a stop at the Railroad Museum of Oklahoma in Enid for a barbeque lunch and to tour their large collection of rail equipment.
Sunday, November 3, was our final day and featured a roundtrip southward from Clinton, Oklahoma, to Frederick, Oklahoma, and return, again making contact with the WT&J for 166 miles roundtrip. This is former Frisco mileage, today operated officially as the Grainbelt.
See the following pages for photos:
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This page last revised: November 13, 2002For questions or comments about SARM, please call 865-241-2140