On Thursday 11-05-2015 I decided to use-or-lose a day of vacation by taking a trip over to the former L&N EK (Eastern Kentucky) Subdivision around Hazard. My first stop was Hazard Yard where nothing was happening. A loaded Santee-Cooper was doubled into two tracks in the short yard, however no engines were around. There was only one vehicle parked at the new yard office. Between Combs and Typo, Crawford Yard was full of stored system tubs. Practically every one of them on the track I saw was disfigured with graffiti. Nothing was loading at Typo. I headed nine miles on down to Perritt, the north end of double track. Former L&N CTC signals on the EK are approach lit, so they are typically dark giving the railfan no hint that anything is coming.
1. At Krypton crossover, I got out my Fiskars tree pruners and renewed some cutting that I started several years ago. CSX signals Krypton.
2. CSX signals Krypton. View 2.
3. Cheyenne Resources inactive Charlene load-out. This is on the former L&N Montgomery Creek Branch near Vicco. Cheyenne Resources Charlene tipple Kodak.
4. Some of those stored cars had 2011 build dates. CSX will have to do some track work to extract the cars. Locals are parking their vehicles on the right-of-way at one place. Cheyenne Resources Charlene tipple Kodak. View 2.
5. The Yellow Creek load-out near Sassafras is active again. B&W Resources is the new operator. Coal trucks were going in and out, and the plant was running. B&W Resources Yellow Creek tipple Sassafras.
6. Pusher 3197 was parked on this short siding at Isom on the Rockhouse SD. It is used to push eastbounds from Deane to Beaver Gap on the former C&O Elkhorn & Beaver Valley SD. CAM Mining at Deane was working, and the E&BV looked to have seen a recent train heading to Martin. CSX pusher 3197. Isom.
7. CSX pusher 3197 Isom. View 2.
8. United Coal’s Sapphire preparation plant at Polly has been inactive for several years. The NW2 and SW7 are still there. Originally this was Golden Oak Mining. United Coal Sapphire tipple. Polly.
9. More stored hoppers and gons. United Coal Sapphire tipple. Polly. View 2.
10. I returned to the EK and Hazard Yard on Friday, 11-13-2015. Those SCWX loads were the same ones seen on 11-05-2015! No engines were present, and no vehicles were at the yard office. CSX Hazard Yard.
11. Down at Typo CSX 109-3177 were idling on the main line with the headlight dimmed. This was a good sign. I figured this train might go north. By tying the train down at Typo, it didn’t have to be doubled into Hazard Yard. The track is easily accessible off KY 80. CSX 109-3177 Typo.
12. The Typo load-out is now operated by Pine Branch Coals, a subsidiary of Blackhawk Mining. CSX 109-3177 Typo.
13. Blackhawk Mining LLC Typo loadout. View 2.
14. South portals of CXS Yerkes Tunnels.
15. In mid-afternoon a crew was taxied down to Typo. N547-09 loaded at Leatherwood Mine and is now destined for the TVA plant at Edgemoor TN. CSX 109-3177 Krypton.
16. Clear signal on Track #1 at Krypton. CSX 109-3177 Krypton.
17. CSX 109-3177 Krypton. View 2.
18. 100 TVAX, SCSX, CEFX, JTSX, NDYX and MBKX rapid-discharge aluminum hoppers. CSX 109 Krypton.
19. N547-09 has wasted no time rolling down the North Fork of the Kentucky River, and I didn’t have long to wait at Haddix. I’m standing on the reclaimed site of Falcon Coal’s tipple from the 1970s. CSX 109-3177 Haddix.
20. The Jackson pusher was ready to back out of the siding and get on the rear of N547 with practiced efficiency. That late in the day, there wasn’t a lot of choices for photo locations. N547 grinds up the 3.5-mile Elkatawa (elk-a-toy) Hill on well maintained track on concrete ties. CSX 109-3177 Yeadon.
21. N547 gets a clear block at Yeadon. Chenowee Tunnel is just around the curve. CSX 109-3177 Yeadon. View 2.
22. He’s “knocked down” the signal. CSX 109-3177 Yeadon. View 3.
23. C753-13 (1st Jackson Helper) with C40s 7591-7877 do their job for another day. Perhaps this will be the only northbound. CSX 7591-7877 Yeadon.
24. CSX 7591-7877 Yeadon. View 2.
25. C753 has cut off. The crew has changed engines and are now ready to return the six miles to Jackson. CSX 7877-7591 Yeadon. View 3.
26. CSX 7877-7591 Yeadon. View 4.
27. This Friday the 13th had been lucky for me! CSX 7877-7591 Yeadon. View 4.
28. On Friday 10-30-2015, we made a trip to Lexington for a doctor’s visit. On the way home I detoured through Winchester where I found these light engines coming off the EK and heading north near the old C&O diamond. CSX 610-689-481-224-621 northbound was a grab shot! Winchester.
29. CSX 621-224-481-689-610 Winchester. View 2.