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North Texas Rail Experience 2023

The Cowcatcher’s first special edition, “North Texas Rail Experience 2023,” was published exclusively for the NMRA National Convention and National Train Show in August 2023 in Grapevine, TX. The 24-page, full-color print edition is a look at passenger, freight and model railroading in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and beyond.

Featured on the cover is the Museum of the American Railroad in Frisco, which is closing in on its vision of becoming a world-class repository of rail history.

Inside are articles on how North Texas became a key commercial center with the arrival of the Houston & Texas Central and Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railway in the 1870s; on the Texas Electric Railway, which was the second largest interurban system west of the Mississippi River; and on the Metroplex’s iconic passenger depots and Saginaw, a popular railfanning spot where grains meet trains.

Order “North Texas Rail Experience 2023” today! $6.95 (includes shipping)

North Texas Rail Experience 2023

Order Today $6.95

Current Issue: September/October 2023


Bright, shiny freight cars are showing in greater numbers on the North American rail network. New orders and deliveries increased in 2022 following a decline beginning in 2019 that the pandemic worsened in 2020 and 2021. According to a report from the Railway Supply Institute's American Railway Car Institute Committee, new freight car orders last year were significantly greater than the combined total of 2020 and 2021. Deliveries increased nearly as much.

But car builders are not out of the woods yet, as the first half of 2023 saw some ups and downs.


Too much of a good thing can be hazardous to model railroad operations. Adding more cars to a layout can place more pressure on yards and industries when running the railroad like the real thing. Three veteran operators share their thoughts about how to avoid logjams in yards, sidings and at industries. 


Computer-based applications that complement DCC are driving the new frontier of model rail road operations.


The Sunset Limited ranks as Amtrak's worst train in on-time performance, prompting a Surface Transportation Board investigation. The Southern Pacific's Coast Daylight, with its brilliant colors, was among the most beautiful trains during the golden age of passenger rail. A BNSF test locomotive that set the stage for future developments in alternative energy motive power technology arrives at an Oklahoma railroad museum.