Site seeing – July 28

I’m always looking for interesting ideas for small layouts. Interchanges especially can provide a great way to represent the rest of the world on a small layout. And so I segue into today’s site of interest. Note the image below is from the RailPictures.Net site and published courtesy of the photographer Tom Sink. Those GPs sure look handsome in those colours though…

Two South Orient Railroad GP9s (former DRGW) lead a train east of Alpine, TX in 1994 on the former ATSF San Angelo Subdivision.

Site 1: The South Orient [ Link to blog –> ]

Recently over on the Rails West blog B. Smith has written about his time on the South Orient. From late 1992 he was the conductor on the railroad working out of Alpine Texas. The list of articles are in the resources section below. One particular piece caught my eye however, in the most recent post:

The cars coming to the South Orient in interchange are on the Mexican side, ready for us to couple into and bring into the United States, as soon as I unlock the gate.

An international border, a bridge and an interchange all in one. Ooh I can feel a design coming on already. Inspiration is certainly where you find it, but I’m not sure I’ve been this inspired for some time.

The whole recollection series has interested me. Take the time to visit the blog and read about the line. There’s even a teaser talking about traffic patterns in the future.

For now I’ll leave you with a TxDOT video on the line’s revitalisation:


  1. Remembering Belding — Old School Railroading in the 1990s
  2. Lonesome Casa Piedra – Last Run of the Texas Pacifico South of Alpine, TX (for now)
  3. Reflections on the South Orient – Part 1
  4. Reflections on the South Orient – Part 2
  5. TxDOT’s page with all of the information on the line

Happy rails to you all…


About Andrew Martin

After a long IT and Telecommunications career in the USA and Australia, I've decided I need a break, I've changed focus and now work in the public transport sector - a complete change of pace. Hobby wise I'm focused on model railway layout building and modelling. I blog, write and publish as often as I am able.
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