The Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad was referred to as the “Burlington Route” – or, to fans, as the “Q”. This program covers the CB&Q and other lines with which it had a relationship – hence the title “Q” Connections.
The Burlington had maintained two of her steam locomotives operational long after dieselization. They were fine public relations tools and were made available for fan trips and historic gatherings in on-line cities. One of these, the number 5632, a “Northern-type” 4-8-4, traveled to Denver for the 1963 NRHS Convention. Number 5632 hauled an excursion to Colorado Springs on the “Joint Line” and back. Witness as it delights the conventioners along the Front Range on the Rio Grande, then back to Denver on the Santa Fe iron. Then we spend a few hours at the Burlington’s hub – Galesburg, Illinois. A 2-10-2 switches in the yards, and at the depot, a string of gleaming “Zephyrs” remind us of the glory days of passenger railroading.
The zenith of the “Q”‘s passenger operations came in the late ’40’s, with the “dome’ car concept and the “California Zephyr”, a great train from Chicago to San Francisco Bay, via the Denver & Rio Grande Western and the Western Pacific railroads. We ride in comfort on the Zephyr through the great plains, the Rockies and the Feather River Canyon. Then we hitch a ride back on a “Western Pacific Fast Freight” through the canyon, around the wye at Keddie and back to Salt Lake City. Finally, we visit a short line in Iowa – The Manchester and Oneida. The line is still under steam with a nineteenth century 4-4-0, a CB&Q hand-me-down.