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Author Topic: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree  (Read 725 times)

partsman88

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2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« on: October 06, 2019, 08:15:09 PM »
I was disappointed last year to miss out on the opportunity to shoot the truck hauling the huge Christmas tree from Oregon to DC, so I'm planning ahead even better this year.

A couple days ago the tour was announced, it starts Monday, Nov. 11th at the Carson National Forest in New Mexico and finishes on Sunday Nov. 24th at Joint Base Andrews in MD, with more than 25 stops along the way.

Fortunately for me, the second-to-last stop is on Saturday, Nov. 23rd from 2-3 pm at White's Travel Center in Raphine, right off I-81 (find the exact schedule here). It just so happens I'll be in the area celebrating Thanksgiving with my extended family south of Roanoke, so I might have the opportunity to get away to nab a shot.

It's already been announced they'll be using another custom-paint job W990 (picture of last year's truck here) to haul the tree too. Wilbanks Trucking Services will have 3 drivers running the load.

Once it goes live you can find the tracker here, along with a map of the scheduled stops.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2019, 08:18:02 PM by partsman88 »

Hank's Truck Forum

2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« on: October 06, 2019, 08:15:09 PM »

tnsamiam

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2019, 09:52:15 PM »
Thanks for posting this. Hopefully I'll be able to catch it at the Nashville stop
Sammy from Tennessee

JJG

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2019, 11:40:28 PM »
That's pretty cool for sure, hope you get to catch the unit in action!

Jim.

partsman88

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2019, 08:51:31 PM »
Thanks for posting this. Hopefully I'll be able to catch it at the Nashville stop

Happy hunting Sammy, I hope you get a shot of it. I'm trying to figure out the details of how I'll be able to be free that Saturday afternoon, there's a very realistic possibility I won't be able to and I'll be SOL again.

tnsamiam

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2019, 03:17:14 PM »
Thanks for posting this. Hopefully I'll be able to catch it at the Nashville stop

Happy hunting Sammy, I hope you get a shot of it. I'm trying to figure out the details of how I'll be able to be free that Saturday afternoon, there's a very realistic possibility I won't be able to and I'll be SOL again.

I hope I can get free too. Iíve got a new baby coming in November so most of my free time will be devoted to sleep. However where it is going to be is on my route home and during my normal drive time. I missed a chance at an action shot of it a couple years ago and was hoping for another chance but we will see.
Sammy from Tennessee

partsman88

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2019, 06:03:28 PM »
Thanks for posting this. Hopefully I'll be able to catch it at the Nashville stop

Happy hunting Sammy, I hope you get a shot of it. I'm trying to figure out the details of how I'll be able to be free that Saturday afternoon, there's a very realistic possibility I won't be able to and I'll be SOL again.

I hope I can get free too. Iíve got a new baby coming in November so most of my free time will be devoted to sleep. However where it is going to be is on my route home and during my normal drive time. I missed a chance at an action shot of it a couple years ago and was hoping for another chance but we will see.

Good luck and congrats on the incoming baby!

partsman88

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2019, 05:37:15 PM »
I'm feeling like a real dunce right now, for some reason I keep thinking Thanksgiving is in the third week of November when it's actually in the 4th.

That means the tree will be arriving at Joint Base Andrews the week before Thanksgiving, not on the Sunday after Thanksgiving.

I'm going to be out of town visiting family off I-81 near Roanoke Thanksgiving weekend, but not the weekend before Thanksgiving (which is when the truck is stopping at White's).

So now I need to decided is it worth driving down there the week before Thanksgiving for maybe half the day, then driving back up that same weekend, then repeating that 5 hour trip several days later?

I could try to shoot it rolling into JBA, but since the tracker isn't exact and I only have a rough estimate of when it'll be arriving that could mean spending my whole day sitting in a spot hoping for the truck to come by.

No easy answers on this one.

Blue Mule74

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2019, 12:43:49 AM »
Interesting...

Thanks for telling us 
Lance C.

Founder of Lance's Truck Picture's

JJG

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2019, 11:58:57 PM »
Decisions, decisions.......hard to know sometimes, hope which ever way you go it works out well!!

Jim.

partsman88

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2019, 09:26:28 AM »


Ask and ye shall receive Charlie.

The weather didn't cooperate, the shot I wanted was a bust because I got distracted by a Coronado MK2 wrecker out of New Brunswick, but I'll settle for this. Beat it to White's Travel Center at Raphine and shot it rolling off the off-ramp. Also got a couple more shots of it on the lot but this was the best one.

I couldn't take the day off work Friday so when I got off at 7:30 I booked it to Dulles airport, picked up a rental car there, drove all night until I got to my motel just south of Roanoke at 1:30 in the morning, and still managed to get up early enough to do some railfanning before the truck arrived.

The trailer is an extendable flatbed measuring in at 80 feet, Kenworth donated the truck and Wilbanks Trucking Services of Artesia, NM (primarily do oilfield work) drove it and their driver said they were going to purchase it after it was done. Glad I made the drive down there because it stayed for an hour and then booked it up the road, they were doing around 80 with a Forest Service police escort. They'll be delivering it at the Capitol tomorrow morning at 10 am but they are going to take the cover off the trailer at Joint Base Andrews beforehand (which they're already at).
« Last Edit: November 24, 2019, 09:29:46 AM by partsman88 »

charlie

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2019, 10:40:37 AM »
Now that is dedication. :) And a pretty darn good shot too considering the elements. 8) And one great looking W990 too. :) About the wrecker...ÖÖ.was it from New Brunswick NJ? ???

JJG

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2019, 12:51:11 PM »
Well done Brian, cool shot regardless and a sharp truck, I would be content with a turn out like that!

Jim.

Wreckerman

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2019, 03:46:49 PM »
Cool, cool, and more cool! 8)
Spiffy rig, and a nice shot.
I would think that's a really cool opportunity for that driver, especially getting the escort, how great would it be to be able to legally speed? ;D
Move Over & Slow Down for Stopped Emergency Vehicles.
This Includes Tow Trucks and Their Operators.

Rob Archer

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2019, 04:06:28 PM »
Dedication Indeed!
Great story of the chase.

Speaking of Rail spotting - Today I got CP 7077 which I believe is in Air Force paint.


partsman88

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Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2019, 04:58:43 PM »
Thanks guys!

Rob I can only hope I catch one of those special CP liveries but the odds are slim given how rare I get to shoot CP. Love that all these railroads are doing special paint jobs on their locos too. Speaking of I was thrilled yesterday, booked it to (my original) hometown of Christiansburg (where my dad and his side of the family are from) and shot a NS stack train in front of the old depot with a Heritage unit leader painted in Lackawanna colors. I'll share that eventually.

Wreckerman their website says they had 3 drivers running the load but I'm not exactly sure if they ran it nonstop (given the 30+ stops they had) or if 1 driver ran it through the west, one through the midwest, and one through the east, but either way someone at Wilbanks is gonna end up with a new W990. I couldn't believe how fast they were going because conditions were miserable, it's all mountains down there and visibility was low due to water whipping off the back of cars. It was super nasty conditions for driving.

Jim you wouldn't believe the size of the crowd that came out for this truck. It was a huge family event, White's brought out their Santa and the crowd for this one truck was as big as any truck show I've ever attended.

Charlie I looked up the USDOT on the wrecker, it's a one-man outfit outta New Brunswick, CA just across the border from Maine. He was towing a new Cascadia for AYR Motor Express out of New Brunswick too.

Hank's Truck Forum

Re: 2019 US Capitol Christmas Tree
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2019, 04:58:43 PM »

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