Bosques de Chihuahua FM H16-44 1000 at Mesa del Huracan, Chihuahua, March 11, 1974.  Photographer: Matthew J Herson, Jr.

(Craig Garver,, CC0)



Bosques de Chihuahua, full name Bosques de Chihuahua Sociedad de Responsabilidad Limitada de Capital Variable was a small logging railroad located in the state of Chihuahua, Mexico. The approximately 20-mile (32 km) line ran from a lumber mill at Mesa Del Huracán in Madera Municipality to a connection with the Ferrocarril Chihuahua al Pacífico. Abandoned in 1988, this railroad rostered three diesel locomotives, an EMD SW1 and two Fairbanks-Morse H-16-44's. The railroad is notable as the last that actively operated the H-16-44 model in revenue service.


Bosques de Chihuahua FM H16-44 1000 at Las Pomas, Chihuahua, March 26, 1976. Photographer: James Marcus. When Chihuahua al Pacifico talked FM into reopening Beloit and building one last order of H-16-44s and a lone H12-44, Bosques de Chihuahua inked an order for this lone unit, too. BCh 500 was about five years old, and they used both on their run to the CH-P at Cumbres. Neither unit was MU capable, so two crews double-headed the trains. (Craig Garver,, CC0) 


Bosques de Chihuahua FM H16-44 1000. Date, location, and photographer unknown. Bosques de Chihuahua (Chihuahua Forest) was a lumber operation that connected with the Chihuahua al Pacifico at Cumbre, Chihuahua, in the Sierra Madre, and ran 32 km to the mill at Mesa Del Huracán. They owned three units, two of these H16-44's (1000 and 1001) and the only SW1 ever exported out of the United States new. Operations shut down in 1988, and they operated the last FM's in revenue service. The full name of the company was Bosques de Chihuahua Sociedad de Responsabilidad Limitada de Capital Variable, essentially "Inc." or "LLC." The only way into the operation was by rail, and usually this meant railfan specials on the CHP to the connection. (Craig Garver,, CC 0)


Bosques de Chihuahua EMD SW1 500 at Mesa del Huracan, Chihuahua, March 11, 1974. Photographer: James C Herold. The maquinista (engineer) must be seriously questioning the sanity of a bunch of Americans traveling to one of the most remote places in Mexico to photograph his old switcher. You couldn't drive here, it was only accessible by rail - first the Chihuahua al Pacifico from Chihuahua or Ciudad Juarez, or Los Mochis, then a trip over the lumber railroad to the mill town. There were no roads. What on earth was so special about this engine? Well, Bosques de Chihuahua ("Chihuahua Forrest Industries") owned just three engines: this SW1, which was bought new, and two FM H16-44's, just like the ones Chihuahua al Pacifico used. Along with the CH-P units, these were the only FM's in Mexico. But what about this common SW1? Well, it, too, was the only SW1 ever bought new in Mexico. Not only that, but it was the only SW1 ever exported new beyond the United States. (Craig Garver,, CC 0)