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Travels with Uncle Pete | by Patrick Dirden
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Travels with Uncle Pete

I must confess that many of my trips away from home are devoted to my friend, and companion, Uncle Pete, AKA: Union Pacific. In it's famous 2002 Building America marketing promotion, Sam Elliott proclaimed you can feel the pulse of America on UP's 30,000 miles of steel rail. I would take it one step further, you also uncover the beauty and diversity of our great land on it's steel trail. From the bustling suburbs of Los Angeles to the quiet solitude of the country, experienced here in North Powder, OR.


On this trip, I picked up a copy of John Steinbeck's novel, Travels with Charley. Steinbeck felt that he had lost touch with America, although he penned so many epic novels about the American experience. So, he took a road trip across America, stopping in small towns to see how Americans lived their daily lives. I feel that my adventures in trainwatching also attempt to capture the same means Steinbeck wanted to capture, to experience America, and uncover the amazing small towns and the people that inhabit them. For Steinbeck, it was the open road; for me, it's the rails.


© 2012 Patrick Dirden Photography

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Taken on July 26, 2012