F Units and E Units, commonly known as Covered Wagons, were very much standard power in the 1950s & 60s. By the 1970s, age was catching up to these classic units and their sheer numbers began to dwindle as railroads either rebuilt them into switchers or retired them from service altogether.
By the 1980s if you could catch any Covered Wagons in operation, you would probably seize the opportunity to capture them on film as their days were definitely numbered. Pentrex has assembled a collection of movie films shot by a railfan in the 1970’s & early 80’s who expected these first generation diesels to come full-circle at any time. An added treat was that these films were recorded using the actual sound as the trains passed.
In this all-color DVD, we will get an all-too-brief look at activity from Portland Union Station and Chicago when Amtrak was young.
A more extensive collection of films were made in Washington along the Burlington Northern between the Seattle area and Sumas, along the Canadian border. Trains 143 and 144 ran daily between those 2 points and even in the early 80’s often had F7s for power. Much of Washington’s beautiful countryside is evident as we see F Units passing forests, meadows, and impressive bridges as long strings of mixed freight is hauled in the northwestern part of the state. We even caught a cab ride for part of the way!