Occasionally you can still see one of the two remaining covered grain hoppers with the Alaska Railroad billboard lettering, Alaskan Agriculture Serving Alaska and the World. An example is ARR #14101, built new in 7/79 these cars have a 200,000 Lbs. capacity. Originally built to handle exports of barley and grains from the Delta Barley Project, most of the car fleet was sold off when the project failed to materialize. Odds are, if northbound they are loaded for delivery to Alaska Mill & Feed in the Anchorage industrial area East of the Alaska Railroad yard. Mr. Ken Sherwood, President of Alaska Garden & Pet Supply dba ALASKA MILL & FEED indicates the availability of these two cars has been very helpful to the company.
Turns out, Ken's dad is Bob Sherwood, a veteran Conductor of the Alaska Railroad now retired. Robert "Bob" Sherwood was preceded on the railroad payroll by his dad, "Jay" Sherwood.
So, when you drive by the elevators and see hoppers parked there, what is going on? Seasonally, loading varies but these are the general products received. Corn, Soya, Beets, Alfalfa pellets, Wheat screenings, raw materials that go into animal feed products blended by the company. These loadings originate in the Midwest, Washington, Oregon and the Northwest.
In the spring at planting time, they will get several loads of fertilizer, phosphates and potash out of Alberta and Saskatchewan, Canada. Total car loadings average three to four a month. The company does not ship out finished products by rail. Ken indicates the company will soon have a web site and we will let you know when you can visit another Alaskan business served by The Alaska Railroad.
Modelers note: The structures at Alaska Mill and Feed lend them selves to becoming very interesting backdrop structures to support deliveries by foreign road covered hoppers on a short spur.
Prepared by Pat Durand from interview with Mr. Ken Sherwood December 19, 2003.
Here is the front and back of their brochure.
|Covered hopper being unloaded after a trip from the lower 48 on an ocean going rail barge via Whittier||For the modelers in the audience: A clear shot of the rear (loading) area for Alaska Mill & Fertiziler Plant.||One of the two remaining covered grain hoppers with billboard lettering, Alaskan Agriculture Serving Alaska and the World|
Page created 10/12/00, posted 12/20/03 and last updated
© 2003-2011 by John Combs and Pat Durand