Monday, May 21, 2012

TLR 2012: A Bridge To Awesome!

This past weekend was the 2012 convention for the Thousand Lakes Region of the NMRA.  I have so many things to say about it that I don't know where to start, so I think I'll just start with one word.

One of the other attendees said it best - "This was the most fun I've ever had with my clothes on".  I couldn't agree more.  The folks in the Dakota Southeastern Region know how to hold a convention!  If fun is measured in "number of photos taken", I had a blast - I racked up a whopping 289 photos over 2 days.  It's going to take some time to sort through them all, and most won't be posted anywhere, but I want to start getting some of the good ones published.  I'll start with the highlight of the weekend.

If you've ever been to Sioux Falls, specifically Falls Park, you know that there is a railroad bridge that crosses over the river and the falls.  I happen to have a photo:

Now, imagine what the view would be like from atop that bridge.  If only there was a way to get up there to have a look.  Oh, I have a photo of that too!

Right about now, you're shaking your head in disapproval, maybe uttering a "tsk, tsk", assuming that I was trespassing by walking out on that bridge.  You would be wrong.  In this next photo, also looking down from the bridge, you'll see a bid of yellow and red.

What could that yellow object be?  What sort of yellow object would you find on top of a railroad bridge?  How about not one, but TWO big yellow diesel locomotives?  Two locomotives pulling a rabid group of railfans, right out onto the bridge, then stopping to let those railfans off to have a look around?

Another look from out front:

Was this coolest thing that happened this weekend?  I'm sure something cooler happened somewhere in the world, but I didn't see it.  This was certainly the highlight of my weekend month year.  To future convention planners, the bar has been raised very, VERY high!