UP 8214 and SP 338 - Empty Coal Train - UP Chester Subdivision

UP 8214 and SP 338 are crossing Fountain Creek on the Chester Subdivision.
UP 8214 and SP 338 - Fountain, IL

Union Pacific 8214 and Southern Pacific 338 are leading an empty coal train north across Fountain Creek, at Fountain, IL., on Union Pacific's Chester Subdivision. At the time of this photograph SP 338 was still in its Southern Pacific paint scheme, and was un-patched, even though the locomotive was owned by Union Pacific. When a locomotive is refereed to as being patched, it means the locomotive still retains the predecessor railroad's paint scheme, but its numbering has been changed by the railroad that currently owns it. 

The train was on its way back to a mine in the Powder River Coal Basin, located in the Western United States. The train would travel north from here to St. Louis, then across Missouri to Kansas City. Then from Kansas City, the train would most likely travel to North Platte, NE, and then on toward a coal mine in Wyoming.

Photo taken: June 19, 2004, at Fountain, Illinois.


  1. Interesting info. I never knew that term. Lovely image. You really have to look for the creek. :-)

    1. Thanks, Shelly.

      You're right, you do have to look hard for the creek. I would say this is more of a flood canal for the Mississippi River, which is about five miles away if you follow the path of the creek.

      I'm trying to take a new angle and be more descriptive with my railroad photograph descriptions. I get quite a bit of traffic from outside North America, and I realized that many people may not know what some of these terms are. Also, having longer descriptions can help with search engine optimizations and rankings.


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