Hearing about Lake Superior & Ishpeming’s (LS&I) operation alone piqued my interest and that of several fellow Midwest railfan friends. Add in the possibility of seeing General Electric (GE) U30C and C30-7 diesel locomotives in action, and my friends and I began planning a road trip about a year ago — all via text messages. We are all in our 20s, so U30C and C30-7 power is something we didn’t get to enjoy in its heyday.
In late May 2021, I, along with Darius Bell (Kansas City area), Jonah Hemingway (Springfield, Mo., area), and Sam Brodersen (another Omaha guy like me), journeyed up to Minneapolis and did some railfanning there; we then went over to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula to see how our luck would be in catching the few remaining former Burlington Northern (BN) units serving on LS&I trains. We found the scenery was great, and finding the hoped-for near-antique GEs in operation became a reality.