We are looking southwest (timetable south) along the Conrail North Yard Branch. Conrail's new CTC-controlled SAS Milwaukee Junction protects the rear end of a GTW train on the Sugarhouse Wye heading westward up the Holly Sub after having pulled out of GTW East Yard. Milwaukee Junction Tower sits in the middle of the wyes off of the GTW Shore Line Sub to the GTW Holly Sub. The Shore Line Sub is the double track rail on the left.
The rail in the forground is connecting the Shore Line Sub from Port Huron with the Holly Sub, and is called the Sugarhouse Wye. It undoubtedly obtained that name long ago from the brown painted building that lies between it the tower; this building was a sugar warehouse at one time. The rail past the tower is connecting the Shore Line Sub from Toledo with the Holly Sub, and is called the West Detroit Wye.
Derailments do occur on both of these wyes do now and then, with the cause nearly always related to their curvature. It is recommended that one keep a good distance from the wyes as a train passes, and to use a telephoto lens if one wants to photograph a train on either of them. Don't forget the cell phone.
Photograph © 2000-2001 Jerry Sundin
Text by Jim H. Harlow
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