Hop on out this weekend and help us continue the construction of the extension and help us get ready for the Summer meet in 10 days. You'll be "ribbited" at the amount of work we've been able to get done on the final loop since the last work session. Even the wildlife is amazed! We are in need of some additional track panels so some help around building these would be greatly appreciated. We're also in need of a team to work on completing the water tower at the new Titan passing siding, not to mention a dozen more things that need done.
Here are some additional pictures of the construction.
Where did the tunnel go!!
Most of the material has been added to the top and sides of the tunnel with just the entrance at both ends needing completed. We hope that we can get the ends done before the convention, but no guarantees.
We expect the upper end that has the pile to the left to settle over the next couple of years. Time will only tell.
In this area of the loop, next to the eastern entrance to the new tunnel, we continue to have drainage issues. We excavated additional material from the area and set up additional drainage controls along the base of the hillside. By removing the additional material we were able to create enough room between the highwall and the mainline to get our kabotas into the area to clean out the area in the future, if necessary. Note how well the third pipe survived its time in the ground, it's the metal next to the backhoe.
Does this pipe look familiar? It's the one we had in under the road, where the creek is near the entrance to the track and was a bear to get into the back of the property. While the pipe is exceeding large it was the right length and diameter to allow it to partially fill and allow water and sediment to continue on down to the creek. This is the fourth pipe to go in with the other three either filling in with sediment or being to weak to support the track that was coming out of the tunnel and going over it. Again, this is the location of the problematic drainage issue near the tunnel.
Here we are a couple of weeks ago as you can see Brody working to develop the final grade on the loop.
Here are a couple of pictures of the professional tree trimming company that came in to remove the tree that had broke loose above the tunnel and was threatening to damage all the work we had done. That'll teach me to not be overly sensitive about removing questionable trees in the future. Also note that we were in the process of backfilling the tunnel excavation at the time.
Here is a view, looking south, of the Mapes block, which is the last block before the new return loop. We have completed all but 45 feet of it, including the new bridge.
Here we are replacing the pipe again in the wet area with the large pipe that is in one of the pictures above. This WILL be the last pipe that goes in!
Here is a picture of the track extending out of the east end of the tunnel and into a siding that can be used for stopping off in the loop to work on your engine or just enjoy the adjacent state wildlife area. We will also have two new industries in the loop as well.
This is Dick completing, what should be, the final mainline grading of the project. Note the track on the south side of the loop is only a couple of panels from the loop switch! Below is the track on the south side of the loop as it is being assembled.
The last picture is from inside the tunnel as we began placing the track into the structure.
So come out and give us a hand as we work to complete this multiyear project.