Thursday, March 7, 2013

Smooth Union Pacific Rail at Mount Vernon, Iowa


Two tracks from the Union Pacific Railroad come through Iowa from the Mississippi to the Missouri Rivers. This closeup of the one rail shows the granite rock ballast (roadbed,) ties, fastener plates and spikes. Recently I read where railroads used thermite welding beginning in the 1930s to join sections of rail together, then polished the join level for that smooth ride which also eliminated some of the clickety-clack sounds. The things you learn.