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Geographic Profile

The Utah Colorado Western Railroad Company is a bridge route connecting the Rocky Mountain cities of Denver, Colo., and Salt Lake City and Ogden. Utah. In addition, the UCW reaches Casper, Wyoming via a secondary mainline. The company utilizes a route which traverses northern Colorado and central Utah’s Uinta Basin, with general lay of the mainline running geographically proximal, but north of the original route proposed by David Moffat for his Denver & Salt Lake. The secondary route to Casper diverges from the mainline at the community of Jiggs, Colorado-located roughly north of Craig, Colorado.

The UCW prides itself in providing a short, fast, and competitive connection between the eastern and western carriers at it’s terminus cities. The UCW’s principal competitor in it’s service region is the Denver & Rio Grand Western for coal and short haul traffic, and the joint Missouri Pacific, D&RGW and Western Pacific overhead routing for long haul traffic. The UCW has developed a competitive West Coast to Midwest routing for overhead traffic utilizing a CB&Q-UCW-SP alliance.

The UCW accesses eastern carriers at Denver both directly and through the jointly owned Denver Terminal Railway Company. Friendly connections at Denver include the Burlington, Rock Island, and the Santa Fe. In its western terminus cities, the UCW maintains friendly connections with the Utah Railway at Provo/Orem, with the Union Pacific (LA&SL) at Salt Lake, and with the SP and UP (OSL) at Ogden. In addition, the UCW connects with the Burlington in Casper, providing that carrier with overflow capacity for coal and general manifest traffic to and from Denver and the Upper Great Plains and Pacific Northwest.

Additionally, the UCW has been instrumental in assisting with the development and servicing of commercially viable industries in the communities it serves. As a result the UCW has built a significant online originating and terminating traffic base from many of the geographically desolate communities it services.

Modeling the Eastern Region

The modeled UCW represents the Eastern Region of the railroad as it existed in 1967. The Eastern Region is comprised of the Colorado Division, headquartered in Shasta, Colorado, and the Wyoming Division, headquartered in Casper, Wyoming. Both divisions are dispatched from the Colorado Division offices in downtown Shasta, utilizing Centralized Traffic Control and modified Manual Block Control methods. Crew management for both divisions is coordinated by the Eastern Region Callers Office located adjacent to Likely Tower at East Yard in Shasta.

The mainline as modeled, extends from East Yard in Shasta, Colorado to a crew change point at Blind Springs, Utah. This portion of the railroad is referred to as the Jiggs Subdivision. East Yard, UCW’s principal classification yard in the Denver area, is located in the community of Shasta, in the far northwest corner of the metropolitan area. Operations into Denver proper are over trackage jointly owned by the UCW and the Denver Terminal Railroad Company. West Flanigan Yard is located outside of the community of Flanigan, Utah. Local industry in the communities of Flanigan and Watercress is handled by the Flanigan SouthWestern Railroad Company, a wholly subsidiary of the UCW. The FSW comprises the remaining portions of a local shortline that ran from Flanigan to now depleted coal reserves outside the community of Watercress, Utah. The FSW was purchased by the UCW in 1955 to enable it to better service the growing industrial base of that area.

The pre-1945 high gradient old mainline, the Old Main Subdivision, is operated as a branch route from Shasta’s East Yard to Jiggs, Colorado, serving the communities of Hamilton and Cobre. From Jiggs, the UCW’s secondary mainline to Casper, Wyoming, the Lone Pine Subdivision, is modeled as far as Lone Pine Jct., at which point it diverges off the modeled railroad and onward to a Rawlins, Wyoming crew change, and ultimately to Casper.

In addition, the D&RGW operates limited coal traffic over the UCW under the jurisdiction of a trackage rights agreement. D&RGW coal trains operate over the UCW between Denver and Lone Pine, at which point they reach an isolated former D&SL branch which serves the mines at Tres Pinos, Colorado.

The Un-Modeled Portion

The un-modeled portion of the railroad from Flanigan, Utah west to Salt Lake and Ogden comprises the Western Region of the UCW. This portion of the railroad includes the Utah Division and Salt Lake Terminal. The Uinta Subdivision of the Utah Division stretches from West Flanigan to a crew change at Fruitland, Utah. The Uinta subdivision provides the UCW with substantial oil, petrochemical, phosphate, and limited coal traffic. From Fruitland, the Salt Lake Subdivision runs west and southwest to reach the outer limits of Orem, Utah, there turning north and running into the heart of the UCW in the Wasatch Front-Salt Lake City’s Great Basin Yard. The Salt Lake Subdivision generates a variety of general merchandise, finished steel, and commodity traffic, in addition to UP and Utah Railway originated coal bound for eastern markets. The critical connection to UCW’s SP overhead traffic, the Ogden Subdivision, extends from the Great Basin Yard northward in the cramped tri-rail corridor (UCW, D&RGW, and UP) and into Ogden. This line provides the UCW with the bulk of it’s overhead and perishable traffic via interchange with the SP.

Welcome
Enter
Overview
Geographic Profile
Train Control
Construction
Lighting
Links
Staging/Operations
CTC
Photo Gallery
What's New Kelly's Scenery