The Big Hook ~ Thursday, March 10, 2016
A few days ago, a mudslide and a downed tree derailed an evening train of the Altamont Commuter Express and sent the lead two cars down into Niles Canyon (also home of the Niles Canyon Railway, which has its own track on the other side of the canyon; the ACE train runs on UP, ex-WP tracks; the NCRy uses the old SP line). By some miracle nobody was killed. Impressively, service was running again two days later.
Meanwhile, the derailed cars were recovered with the help of a UP "big hook". Rail-mounted cranes don't get called out very often these days, but in inaccessible locations like this, they're still useful.direct link