Texas Eagle with two units

Help Support Amtrak Unlimited Discussion Forum:

frequentflyer

OBS Chief
Joined
Jun 10, 2008
Messages
938
Why is Amtrak running 4 car trains with two Genesis locomotives? Its been a common occurrence the last couple of days and the units are running all the way to San Antonio.
 

Siegmund

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Nov 19, 2018
Messages
309
Location
northwestern Montana
Usually means that one of the units is deemed unreliable enough that a spare is needed (or that the host railroad requires the spare for some other, usually-weather-related, reason: late in a previous millennium, UP required the Pioneer to run with 2 units in winter.)
 

Way2Kewl

Service Attendant
Joined
Sep 29, 2019
Messages
123
Location
Dallas
CHI>SAS - Yep, started running 2 Engines last 3 days including today.
Also ran a second sleeper on Tue of last week... (at first was thinking they were going to start running the 3 day a week 421-2130 again along the weekly 21-2120 (this way for years, and dozens of 421/21's trips) but as an added twist I'm on my first 2131 car next week. I'll log the consist numbers in case they're changing the 2130 car number. No clues at this point.
Texas Eagle_Train_Consists.jpg
 
Last edited:

Bob Dylan

50+ Year Amtrak Rider
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
23,539
Location
Austin Texas
CHI>SAS - Yep, started running 2 Engines last 3 days including today.
Also ran a second sleeper on Tue of last week... (at first was thinking they were going to start running the 3 day a week 421-2130 again along the weekly 21-2120 (this way for years, and dozens of 421/21's trips) but as an added twist I'm on my first 2131 car next week. I'll log the consist numbers in case they're changing the 2130 car number. No clues at this point.
View attachment 23234
Yep, the Eagles have needed 2 Engines for years since the P-42s are starting to become Shop Queens due to being "run hard and put up wet"!( but the 4 Car consists are a joke!)

The 2nd Sleeper is really needed along with a Sightseer Lounge and returning to Traditional Dining with a Full Crew!
 

Way2Kewl

Service Attendant
Joined
Sep 29, 2019
Messages
123
Location
Dallas
Just do the Western LD routes I ride.
  • Check Amtrak status via APP for today to get arrival time. (18 seconds.)
  • Use a station vitualrailcam on the route and point DVR to that time... (32 seconds.)
  • Log Sleeper direction (10 seconds)
  • Enjoy my hobby - priceless!
... and as of a matter of fact... I do have a lot of time on my hands now... retired last Friday. :)
 

frequentflyer

OBS Chief
Joined
Jun 10, 2008
Messages
938
So some accountant in DC thinks running a Genesis and four cars delivers the best numbers for this train. So what do the accounts think of an extra 4000 gallons of diesel to move four cars is doing to the "bottom line"?
 

Palmetto

Engineer
Joined
May 12, 2014
Messages
2,352
Location
Miami
So some accountant in DC thinks running a Genesis and four cars delivers the best numbers for this train. So what do the accounts think of an extra 4000 gallons of diesel to move four cars is doing to the "bottom line"?
I hear what you're saying, but was the second unit powered and pulling, or was it dead in tow? My belief is that it was probably the latter.
 

Cal

Foamer
Joined
Jan 23, 2021
Messages
2,948
Location
Socal
When I was on the Eagle in late March we had two engines from CHI to FTW, where we dropped one off.
 

Way2Kewl

Service Attendant
Joined
Sep 29, 2019
Messages
123
Location
Dallas
I hear what you're saying, but was the second unit powered and pulling, or was it dead in tow? My belief is that it was probably the latter.
Maybe not... Eagle has run 2 Engines 4 days in a row now.
--- and for the recent running of the consist, you'll have a 77% chance by booking B or D to be able to sit on the couch and watch the scenery come towards you ;-) (never 100%)

1624997202408.png
 

frequentflyer

OBS Chief
Joined
Jun 10, 2008
Messages
938
I hear what you're saying, but was the second unit powered and pulling, or was it dead in tow? My belief is that it was probably the latter.
Good point, looked at the cams today can could not tell. Still thats pulling 130 tons or so just for the heck of it. Thats a Superliner and a half roughly. Talk about pulling non rev cars.
 

ShiningTimeStL

Train Attendant
Joined
Apr 23, 2019
Messages
62
Just when I didn't think the Teaglet could get any worse. More like the Texas Chicken now. My MoPac heart is breaking. Why? Why this train? Why can't they pick some snotty highfalutin east coast train to torment?
 

Palmetto

Engineer
Joined
May 12, 2014
Messages
2,352
Location
Miami
Maybe not... Eagle has run 2 Engines 4 days in a row now.
--- and for the recent running of the consist, you'll have a 77% chance by booking B or D to be able to sit on the couch and watch the scenery come towards you ;-) (never 100%)

View attachment 23263
Interesting info. Where is that from? It shows the train running to Dallas when actually it runs to Ft. Worth. That causes me to question the accuracy of other info.

Another possible explanation might be that if the train is running with two engines, it may do in San Antonio what the Lake Shore Limited does at Albany where two trains combine into one: the two engines pull the very short 4-car #449 to Albany, then continue to pull the entire #49 to Chicago. OTOH the Lake Shore runs daily, and the Sunset Limited does not, so to me the whole thing is puzzling.
 

Way2Kewl

Service Attendant
Joined
Sep 29, 2019
Messages
123
Location
Dallas
Interesting info. Where is that from? It shows the train running to Dallas when actually it runs to Ft. Worth. That causes me to question the accuracy of other info.
I authored the XLS and the Information comes from the virtualrailfan Fort Worth Tower 55 cam. (for the Eagle)
Eagle ends in DAL as this is home. Eagle is just my way "home" from CHI where all my Westbound LD routes connect.
I can validate all but the actual car # assigned to the Sleepers.
 

Way2Kewl

Service Attendant
Joined
Sep 29, 2019
Messages
123
Location
Dallas
To further qualify this consist, is as it leave St Louis thru San Antonio (they drop off cars in St Louis) And they don’t alter in consist between St Louis and San Antinio.

Pre-COVID Eagle ran with the 7 days a week 21 with 1 Sleeper up front, Diner, Obs, and 2 Coach's and added the 3 days a week 421 Sleeper and Coach to the end of the train.

During COVID they have dropped the Baggage and Observation car as well as the extra Sleeper and Coach (and ran only 3 days a week for the 21 too for a while) But currently are running only 1 Sleeper up front, Diner, and 2 Coach’s. (Exceptions have been rare) (

We started seeing a second Engine each day for a few days now. I suspect they are preparing to return the “true” 421 Sleeper/Coach soon on the back of the train (my preference :).

Only thing I can’t validate are the actual car #’s. (cams aren’t that good yet) For this I’m only going on history.

Below lists my last few Eagle trips.
Note that it's always been either 2x30 or 2x20 but next week will be the first time I’ve been assigned to a 2131 on the Eagle.
Eagle.jpg
 
Last edited:

Bob Dylan

50+ Year Amtrak Rider
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
23,539
Location
Austin Texas
To further qualify this consist, is as it leave St Louis thru San Antonio (they drop off cars in St Louis) And they don’t alter in consist between St Louis and San Antinio.

Pre-COVID Eagle ran with the 7 days a week 21 with 1 Sleeper up front, Diner, Obs, and 2 Coach's and added the 3 days a week 421 Sleeper and Coach to the end of the train.

During COVID they have dropped the Baggage and Observation car as well as the extra Sleeper and Coach (and ran only 3 days a week for the 21 too for a while) But currently are running only 1 Sleeper up front, Diner, Obs, and 2 Coach’s. (Exceptions have been rare)

We started seeing a second Engine each day for a few days now. I suspect they are preparing to return the “true” 421 Sleeper/Coach soon on the back of the train (my preference :).

Only thing I can’t validate are the actual car #’s. (cams aren’t that good yet) For this I’m only going on history.

Below lists my last few Eagle trips.
Note that it's always been either 2x30 or 2x20 but next week will be the first time I’ve been assigned to a 2131 on the Eagle.
View attachment 23285
You are correct that the Eagles are running 2 P-42s between CHI and SAS, but with a 4 Car Consist the question is Why when this Train ran for over 20 years with 1 when the consist was 8-9 Cars.

There is No Sighseer Lounge on the Eagles between CHI and SAS, there is only 1 Sleeping Car, even on #421/#422 Days and only 2 Coaches, resulting in High Bucket Roomettes since the Crew occupies 4 of the Rooms in the Sleeper.

And they're still serving Flex Meals to Sleeping Car Passengers in the CCC, with 1 LSA doing 4 People's jobs in the Diner/ Cafe.
 

Palmetto

Engineer
Joined
May 12, 2014
Messages
2,352
Location
Miami
There used to be an advocacy group for this train. Has it ceased to exist. I believe it was they who got Amtrak to make some improvements to the train.
 

Way2Kewl

Service Attendant
Joined
Sep 29, 2019
Messages
123
Location
Dallas
There used to be an advocacy group for this train. Has it ceased to exist. I believe it was they who got Amtrak to make some improvements to the train.
Texasrailadvocates.org and Railpassengers.org (renamed NARP) is the best we've got now.

At least we're on a route. I really miss the DAL>ORD route with my kids pre Katrina.
 

Way2Kewl

Service Attendant
Joined
Sep 29, 2019
Messages
123
Location
Dallas
tempo-rail.org
I have no idea how much contribution they provide to Amtrak changes. From my observation I find Railpassengers.org my best option to support. Also I should add the disclaimer that I'm not fond of the Eagle. Nothing to see CHI>DAL. It's simply my route home from Zephyr, Empire, or Chief. Or for my mini trips from DAL to the Joliet Harrah's Craps tables (just blocks away from the station) I support RP because it's focus is wider.
 

Cal

Foamer
Joined
Jan 23, 2021
Messages
2,948
Location
Socal
\Also I should add the disclaimer that I'm not fond of the Eagle. Nothing to see CHI>DAL. It's simply my route home from Zephyr, Empire, or Chief.
Although the scenery is not dramatic, I found it quite pleasant. The sunset over the Texas farmland (I think south of Temple?) was very pretty, wish I got a picture of it..
 
Top