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Old 05-16-2009, 08:20 AM   #1
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Avoid unless you like trains - cascade locks

We stayed at the Cascade Locks KOA in the Columbia River Gorge last night.
Little did we know the rain tracks were VERY close-by. Kept us up most of
the night!
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Old 05-16-2009, 08:57 AM   #2
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Sorry to hear that. Sometimes you just don't know until you hear the whistle blowing every 45 minutes all night long. Thanks for the tip.
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Old 05-16-2009, 09:16 AM   #3
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We've been in the same boat. Our Airstream dealer used to be located near the end of the main runway for the St. Louis airport. He had hookup sites and his practice was to have you stay overnight in your new trailer, then the next morning they would address any issues.

He also had some railroad tracks next to the dealership. Well we were expecting airport traffic and it was an interesting first night as the jets came in and out very low over our heads. What we didn't expect was the train traffic, and as we were laying in bed the vibrations from the train cars over the rails was literally shaking the trailer. Needless to say we were in stitches laughing since if it wasn't a jet overhead it was a train going by. We didn't get a lot of sleep that first night.

His dealership is now part of the runway extension and he's out in the far burbs with the only sounds that you may hear, if you stay overnight is from the Interstate.

Jack
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Old 05-16-2009, 09:29 AM   #4
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Many of the RV parks on I-40 across Arizona and other states have this issues as well. The tracks follow the interstate and the trains sound their horns as they approach all ungated crossings.
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Old 05-16-2009, 03:39 PM   #5
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...and if you DO like trains...

I'm not sure this is the idea of this thread, but if you do like trains I would highly recommend the Train Museum in Old Town Sacramento. We were told it was a good place to go and thought, "oh-sure." We intended to spend a couple of hours there. We ended up being there all day. It is very interesting. A lot of history about the railroad coming to the West Coast. Many locomotives and train cars in a huge building.

Randy Bowman
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Old 05-16-2009, 05:36 PM   #6
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True for I40 in both AZ and NM.

A couple of years ago, we were out at Grants, NM and spoke with the manager person at one of the RV parks there. She said that the railroad was under some kind of mandate to blast the horn near intersections, with the result that the trains running through town were blasting their horns practically all the way through town. At the request of the various lodgers and other businesses, town officials were in negotiations to get the rules modified so that the horns wouldn't have to be blown as much.


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Old 05-16-2009, 05:52 PM   #7
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True for I40 in both AZ and NM.

A couple of years ago, we were out at Grants, NM and spoke with the manager person at one of the RV parks there. She said that the railroad was under some kind of mandate to blast the horn near intersections, with the result that the trains running through town were blasting their horns practically all the way through town. At the request of the various lodgers and other businesses, town officials were in negotiations to get the rules modified so that the horns wouldn't have to be blown as much.


Lynn
Not a mandate; it is the law that trains sound their horns at ALL crossings. AFAIK there is a way to make a crossing a "silent" crossing but it requires a certain type of gate (doubles to keep Darwin Award nominees from going around the downed gates), set back markings and lights. It is expensive to install and most towns don't want to foot the bill and the rail road is going to do it on their nickel.

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Old 05-16-2009, 07:03 PM   #8
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Without getting overtechnical, the law pretty much says the horn has to be sounded for a period of time, usually 20 seconds, before the crossing, and the horn has to be blowing until the lead locomotive is in the intersection.
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Old 05-16-2009, 08:33 PM   #9
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We love trains

We love to camp at campground where the trains are close by. Whistles all night and everything.

But then, our second house we rented in Vallejo, CA (US Navy duty) had train tracks about 40 feet behind the house. And the whistle sign for the intersection about ¼ mile up the tracks. Pretty soon, we no longer heard them at night, and were reminded of how often they passed when Kay’s parents came to visit. Her mom told us in the morning – “Do you know the trains go by 5 times during the night? And blow their whistle right behind your house?”

Current house is no where near train tracks....

Chris
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Old 05-17-2009, 01:31 AM   #10
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Those wern't trains, that was the 70 knot wind blowing down the Gorge.
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Old 05-17-2009, 06:01 AM   #11
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Wed stayed at a motel along I 40 in Gallup, NM some years ago about 100 yards from the tracks. Trains along I-40 in NM and Arizona are very, very frequent. The motel was built so badly, the walls shook every time train passed. The next day we moved to a better built motel. It was closer to the tracks, quieter and didn't shake.

Sorry to hear of your bad experience, Mike. Along I-70 In eastern Colorado (Strasburg) and Junction City, Kan., the train whistle blows at 4:30 am. We were at 2 KOA's in those towns about 3 weeks ago.

Gene
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Old 05-17-2009, 06:59 AM   #12
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Ditto for the KOA in Sandusky, Oh. trains, trains and more trains. I thought from the feel and sound of things we were in a train yard. The kids and I had to move on after the first night.
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Old 05-17-2009, 09:50 AM   #13
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I thought from the feel and sound of things we were in a train yard.
You were. There are two yards in Sandusky. Knowing the logic of KOA, the Kampground was probably directly between them.
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Old 05-17-2009, 02:16 PM   #14
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As a retired railroader, let me say that locomotive engineers would like to remain employed just like everyone else, so they blow the whistle as required by the company even if they can see for miles and the crossing is all clear. There was a time when blowing the whistle was not blown loudly if at all depending on conditions. But with the proliferation of lawsuits that practice had to stop.

Spending the money to get the crossing safe enough to protect those who would drive in front of a train is about the only option left IMHO. Even then there will still be the noise of the locomotives so it's just a partial solution.

Converting to overhead electric and ribbon rail is the best way to quiet trains that I can think of. We ought to be using more rail anyway(way better fuel economy-less air pollution). Get those trucks off my highway!

Tried to insert a smily face where that sentence ended but am not computer smart enough to figure out how to do it. Just put the faces web site address where I wanted the face.

So, Stop, look, and listen.
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