Ferrosur - Beyond Tierra Blanca

Ferrosur's Linea G
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Ferrosur's Linea G branches off of the Mexico to Veracruz mainline at Cordoba. It then runs southward, dropping into the coastal plains on its way to the gulf port of Coatzacoalcos. The line also connects with the former FC Chiapas Y Mayaba at Medias Aguas and Coatzacoalcos. The yard at Tierra Blanca, located about 80 KM south of Cordoba, is the hub of operations for the western part of this line. Linea G serves the many oil refineries along the gulf coast, as well as cement plants, sugar processing plants and the large Modelo brewery at Tuxtepec Oaxaca.

At dusk, an SF30C clears into the north end of the Patio Norte at Tierra Blanca. The town is quiet except for the distant sounds of boxcars being switched, music playing in nearby houses and children playing baseball in the street.


The quiet is broken by a southbound unit cement train slowly passing through yard limits, blasting the whistle over the many residential street crossings on the north side of town. The yard job has cleared out to let the road train by.



As the cement train pulls through town, baseball and quiet returns to the neighborhood streets.
The yard job is tying up at the depot at the end of their day.





A southbound manifest train is slowly passing through Tierra Blanca while entering the Patio Sur. Migrants patiently waiting for a northbound train are very common around the yard here.


Having just returned from switching at Tuxtepec, Oaxaca, a former AT&SF SF30C pauses at the South Yard at Tierra Blanca.

Earlier in the day, a yard job is switching the small yard at Papaloapan. They have pulled off the branch from Tuxtepec, and will pick up a few cars from the small yard before returning to Tierra Blanca. The SF30C is one of two that remain on the Ferrosur roster. Made from U36C's, the Santa Fe custom made the unique cabs and noses on 70 such locomotives. Several were eventually sold to FNM. However, only two remain in Mexico, both on Ferrosur's roster. Number 9530 is preumably still wearing the same number used while on the Santa Fe.


A northbound quimico (tank cars from the Coatzacoalcos refineries) at Granja.

At Tres Valles, Veracruz, I wanted to photograph the northbound quimico as it crested this short grade. But just as the train got close, my autofocus picked up on this guy walking across the tracks. Walking back to town from the sugarcane fields with his blade across his shoulder, I immediately thought he was more interesting than the train.



At Medias Aguas, a single Ferrosur engine rests on the south leg of the wye. This is the junction with the former FC Chiapas y Mayaba line to Salina Cruz and the Guatamala border. Although information is scarce, FIT is reportedly operating this line as far as Salina Cruz. However, there were several Ferrosur boxcars parked on the main track south of the wye with no indication of recent movement. The rails were rusted over, and dirt filled in the flangeways at all the crossings.

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