Getting Reacquainted With the Railroads of Akron on a Gorgeous Autumn Sunday Railfan Outing

A Wheeling & Lake Erie stone train takes head room on the trestle spanning the valley of the Ohio & Erie Canal.

A Wheeling & Lake Erie stone train takes head room on the trestle spanning the valley of the Ohio & Erie Canal.

Good things happen when you go out on an autumn railfan outing with Roger Durfee.

I met up with my fellow Akron Railroad Club member in early November on a Sunday morning for some autumn railfanning around Akron.

We’ve done this in the past and I’ve come back with some very good autumn foliage images of trains images, some of the best I’ve made.

We had a plan of sorts that we didn’t quite wind up fully implementing because events kept interfering.

We didn’t know when we set out that morning that we’d have the opportunity to photograph three Wheeling & Lake Erie trains.

I’ve long said that I usually wind up getting the W&LE when I’m out looking for something else and that is what happened on this day.

Aside from capturing the W&LE, we also inspected the current state of affairs at Voris Street, found that the Amtrak station in Amtrak hasn’t changed much since the rail passenger carrier left Akron more than a decade ago, and took the time to visit the former AC&Y Building in downtown Akron.

We also stopped by Northside Station on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad to photograph a departing National Park Scenic train and visited Wingfoot Lake State Park to catch the arrival of Wingfoot Two on a flight from Columbus where it had helped TV cover the Ohio State-Nebraska football game on a Saturday night.

As mentioned in another post, we also visited Akron Junction to check out how things have changed there with CSX removing most of the tracks on the Valley Line level.

En route to Akron Junction we stopped so I could photograph the former Erie bridge over North Forge Street. The names of the cities that the Erie served have faded away, but the Erie herald is still prominent.

Did I mention that we caught CSX intermodal train Q137 at Market Street?

All in all, it was, as Roger remarked as it was winding down, a well-rounded day.

Here is a selection of photographs showing what we landed.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

The first stop on our Sunday outing was the Gorge Metropark to photograph the remains of the bridge that once carried the Northern Ohio Traction & Light Company interurban cars across the Cuyahoga River.

The first stop on our Sunday outing was the Gorge Metropark to photograph the remains of the bridge that once carried the Northern Ohio Traction & Light Company interurban cars across the Cuyahoga River.

The CVSR National Park Scenic departs Akron station, which has been decorated for the Polar Express trains.

The CVSR National Park Scenic departs Akron station, which has been decorated for the Polar Express trains.

Here comes the Q137 past the site of the second Akron Union Depot. That is Perkins Street in the background.

Here comes the Q137 past the site of the second Akron Union Depot. That is Perkins Street in the background.

Shadows from a billboard creep over the lead unit of westbound Q137 as it approaches Market Street.

Shadows from a billboard creep over the lead unit of westbound Q137 as it approaches Market Street.

The last railroad to use this bridge was Conrail, but the Erie heritage is still quite visible.

The last railroad to use this bridge was Conrail, but the Erie heritage is still quite visible.

There are fewer tracks at Akron Junction now, but the coaling tower still stands.

There are fewer tracks at Akron Junction now, but the coaling tower still stands.

Moving out onto the trestle built decades ago by the Akron, Canton & Youngstown.

Moving out onto the trestle built decades ago by the Akron, Canton & Youngstown.

Contrary to appearances, this W&LE stone train is making a backup move on the CSX New Castle Sub.

Contrary to appearances, this W&LE stone train is making a backup move on the CSX New Castle Sub.

Catching this ABC transfer job approaching Voris Street was an unexpected bonus.

Catching this ABC transfer job approaching Voris Street was an unexpected bonus.

Crossing Voris Street, which is, tehnically, closed to vehicle traffic.

Crossing Voris Street, which is, tehnically, closed to vehicle traffic.

It took longer than we expected, but the ABC transfer job finally showed up in southeast Akron near Goodyear Boulevard.

It took longer than we expected, but the ABC transfer job finally showed up in southeast Akron near Goodyear Boulevard.

Another view of the ABC job as it returns to Brittain Yard.

Another view of the ABC job as it returns to Brittain Yard.

We waited until early afternoon to photograph at Rock Cut Siding the stone train we had seen earlier in the day.

We waited until early afternoon to photograph at Rock Cut Siding the stone train we had seen earlier in the day.

Here comes the third W&LE train of the day, but contrary to a post on Facebook it did not have a pair of "tiger stripes" for motive power.

Here comes the third W&LE train of the day, but contrary to a post on Facebook it did not have a pair of “tiger stripes” for motive power.

Cruising along the hedges along North Street near East High School.

Cruising along the hedges along North Street near East High School.

Wingfoot Two touches down at its base near Suffield across Wingfoot Lake as seen from Wingfoot Lake State Park.

Wingfoot Two touches down at its base near Suffield across Wingfoot Lake as seen from Wingfoot Lake State Park.

 

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