Posts Tagged ‘CSX executive train’

The Capitol Limited Returns to Akron

August 27, 2021
The CSX office car special passes through Akron Thursday morning.
Rattling the diamonds at Center Street in Youngstown
At Station Square in Pittsburgh. The Capitol Limited of the Baltimore & Ohio used to stop here.
I got cloud skunked just as the train passed the Pittsburgh skyline

Thursday morning CSX ran its ofice car special across northern Ohio and Pennsylvania.

With two F40PHs and 11 passenger cars all decked out in a Baltimore & Ohio inspired livery it looked like the Capitol Limited had returned once again.

I first caught the special at Akron.  The weather was foggy and overcast but my photos turned out okay.

Next was Youngstown where the weather wasn’t any better but I was interviewed by a local TV station curious as to why all the railfans were waiting on the Center Street bridge.

Then it was on to Station Square in Pittsburgh.  The weather was much improved but we unfortunately were cloud skunked when the train arrived.

In times past the Capitol would have made a stop here.

Article and Photographs by Todd Dillon

Erstwhile Capitol Limited Comes Through

June 11, 2021

The CSX office car special ran between Cleveland and Indianapolis on Thursday. I was able to catch it at Greenwich.

It has recently been repainted into Baltimore & Ohio colors along with a pair of F40PH units to match. 

Unfortunately the F40s had technical issues and a pair of tier 4 GEVOs were added to the head end. This was a bit disappointing but it was still a sharp looking train reminiscent of the B&O Capitol Limited.

Of interest is Moonlight Dome a former B&O dome car which CSX purchased last year for the OCS train.

The car was built for the Chesapeake & Ohio for use on its ill-fated Chessie streamliner. But after that train was cancelled before it began operations,

Article and Photographs by Todd Dillon

CSX OCS in Cleveland Today

June 10, 2021

The CSX executive train will reportedly operate from Cleveland to Indianapolis today.

The train, with F40 locomotives CSX 1 and CSX 2, is reportedly en route to Evansville, Indiana, and Waycross, Georgia, according to online reports whose accuracy could not be verified.

Reports on HeritageUnits.com said the train passed through Mentor at 11:30 p.m. Wednesday with CSX No. 3310 leading.

It was operating with train symbol P001-09. Both F40s were painted in a new livery inspired by the blue, gray and black Baltimore & Ohio locomotive livery of the 1940s and 1950s.

The train earlier this week was in Massachusetts and traveled the former Boston & Albany and Water Level routes to Cleveland.

It was reported on Wednesday in Buffalo at 8:27 p.m. and at North East, Pennsylvania, at 9:45 p.m.

An online report indicated the train is due to arrive in Waycross on Friday night.

UPDATE: Online reports indicated the executive train was spotted at Greenwich at 7:30 a.m. and the two F40 units were trailing.

CSX Paints F40 Into B&O Inspired Livery

May 21, 2021

Railfan and Railroad magazine reported on its Facebook page that CSX has repainted one of its executive fleet F40PH locomotives into a Baltimore & Ohio-inspired livery.

A photograph accompanying the report showed the unit has been named CSX1.

CSX will reportedly repaint other F40s into the same blue, gray and black livery as they are cycled through the shop.

The image posted online shows a gold spot on the nose where the B&O herald would have been applied. The words “CSX Transportation” appear on the flanks rather than “Baltimore & Ohio.”

CSX Buys Dome Car

September 8, 2020

CSX has purchased two cars from the Cincinnati Railway, which operates the Ohio Rail Experience, the Cincinnati Scenic Railway and the Cincinnati Dinner train.

Sold were dome car Moonlight Dome and sleeper Birch Grove, which CSX plans to use as part of its executive fleet.

The cars had been used for private varnish charters and American Association of Private Rail Car Owners convention trains.

In a letter posted on a railfan chat list and sent to its customers, Cincinnati Railway majority owners Brian and Vicky Collins and Harry and Patti Davis said that operating private rail cars has become difficult due “to the continued onerous directives and rates applied by Amtrak and the ever increasing general upkeep and operating cost.”

The letter said CSX approached the owners to see if Moonlight Dome might be for sale.

CSX had been seeking a Budd-built dome to modify for use as a Presidents car for inspections and entertainment.

Cincinnati Railway agreed to sell the car but only if CSX also purchased Birch Grove at the same time.

After agreeing on terms, Cincinnati Railway sent both cars to CSX.

The letter said the it will continue to offer opportunities to ride in private rail cars through its Ohio Rail Experience excursions.

Birch Grove was built for the Southern Pacific in 1950 for its Sunset Limited. It later was operated by Amtrak. It has six up and down double bedroom suites and nine single bed roomettes.

Moonlight Dome was built in 1947 for the Chesapeake & Ohio as a low-profile dome suitable for use in the East. It has bedrooms and a lounge area in addition to its 24-seat dome section.

One Day on the Hill

February 20, 2020

The hill near Home and Tallmadge avenues in Akron has long been a favorite spot of photographers to capture trains on film or megapixels.

Shown above is Baltimore & Ohio GP40-2 No. 4444 leading a CSX office car special eastbound on the hill.

The roster number of the locomotive alone would make it interesting, but the photographer suggested this may have been one of the first moves of a CSX business car train.

The image was made on April 9, 1987.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

10 Years Ago Today Was a Most Memorable ARRC Photography Outing to New London, Greenwich

May 28, 2016

"That looks like an F40." And it was, leading the CSX executive train at Greenwich on May 28, 2006.

“That looks like an F40.” And it was, leading the CSX executive train at Greenwich on May 28, 2006.

Ten years ago today several members of the Akron Railroad Club gathered for what was one of my top five outings in the nearly 13 years I’ve been in the club.

It was a trip to New London and Greenwich that was ideal because of its good weather, diverse mixture of trains and a few pleasant surprises.

When the idea was mentioned during a club meeting about holding a Memorial Day Weekend outing, club members initially settled on going to Greenwich.

But Marty Surdyk said he planned to spend the morning in New London at the above-ground reservoir there and would go to Greenwich in the afternoon.

At the time, I had never railfanned in either location so I followed Marty’s lead and began the day at the reservoir.

CSX traffic was steady throughout the morning. Most members who participated in the outing began in New London, although a few spent all day in Greenwich.

At one point a flock of vulture was flying above us, which as you might expect led to some joking. We learned from Peter Bowler that a group of such birds is known as a “kettle.” I’ve yet to hear that term used since that day.

In putting together my program for the ARRC 80th anniversary event I had a chance to review my photos from that day and had forgotten that among other things we saw a caboose on the rear of an eastbound train.

Another train featured a BNSF warbonnet with its motive power running mates consisting of a Norfolk Southern unit and a TFM locomotive.

Most of our group at New London spent their time atop the reservoir or at its base.

Tim Krogg was one of those who spent the morning down below and about 1 p.m. he started getting impatient.

“When are we going to get some (expletive) lunch?” he bellowed up at us.

With that we descended to ground level and headed into town to McDonalds’s, where we could eat and keep an eye on the CSX mainline.

After lunch, we went back to the reservoir but shortly thereafter decided to head for Greenwich.

I didn’t know how to get there so Marty said, “follow me.” I did and the route he took was one dusty road after another.

In Greenwich we continued to have good luck and even caught an eastbound Wheeling & Lake Erie manifest freight with GP35 No. 2662 in the lead, one of the railroad’s two “Kodachrome” or “painted ladies” locomotives.

But the sighting of the day was a westbound train on CSX that went straight through toward Crestline and Galion.

We had seen a headlight and heard a symbol that no one recognized. As Marty eyed the train through his telephoto lens he said, “that looks like an F40.”

I didn’t believe it but as the train got closer it turned out to be a three-car passenger train that was, indeed, led by an F40PH.

It was my first and thus far only sighting of the CSX executive train.

We speculated it was en route to Indianapolis to pick up VIPs who had attended the Indy 500 earlier that day.

I never forgot how much I enjoyed that outing and I wanted to do it again, but it took a few years before I could get it onto the club’s schedule.

The date was set for May 26, 2013. Unlike the 2006 outing, this one was a total bust. I was the only person to show up.

As I wrote this, I thought about what made that 2006 outing so enjoyable. There were a number of reasons, most noticeably the fellowship of being with fellow rail fans. I would have enjoyed seeing and photographing those same trains had I been there by myself, but it is more enjoyable to do it in the company of other like-minded people.

It also was my first time to railfan in New London and Greenwich. Although I’ve been back to both places numerous times in the intervening years, like anything else in life once you do it several times it just doesn’t have the same excitement of discovery feel that it had the first time.

Beyond that, there are some events that seem destined to be special because of the set of circumstances that surround them and what happens during the day.

That decade ago outing in New London and Greenwich was one of those. It cannot be duplicated in quite the same way as it played out, but at least I’ll always have my memories.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

A Helm Financial, a.k.a. HLCX SD40 trails on this westbound manifest freight. No. 9039 was built in April 1970 for the Louisville & Nashville.

A Helm Financial, a.k.a. HLCX, SD40 trails on this westbound manifest freight. No. 9039 was built in April 1970 for the Louisville & Nashville.

The typical motive power on a typical CSX stack train.

The typical motive power on a typical CSX stack train.

It was just like old times, but we were still surprised to see a caboose on the rear of this eastbound CSX train.

We were still surprised to see a caboose on the rear of this eastbound CSX train even if it was battered and vandalized.

What a motive power consist this train had.

What a motive power consist this train had. That is Peter Bowler making a photograph at the far left.

It is always a good outing when you can catch a warbonnet leading a train.

It is always a good outing when you can catch a warbonnet leading a train.

Even some of the clouds seemed special.

Even some of the clouds seemed special.

A special W&LE sighting in Greenwich.

A colorful  W&LE sighting in Greenwich.

Many of us spent most of the morning atop the reservoir.

Many of us spent most of the morning atop the reservoir.

CSX Executive Train to Visit Kentucky Derby

April 30, 2016

CSX plans to send an executive train to Louisville, Kentucky, for the 142nd running of the Kentucky Derby on May 7.

The train will bring VIP guests and policymakers aboard a train pulled by F40PH locomotives.

Jay Westbrook, CSX assistant vice president of passenger operations, said that in some years the trains has had as many as 15 cars.

CSX logo 3Westbrook said CSX views the train as another way to serve customers and collaborate with Kentucky officials on new ways to spur economic development.

One passenger who won’t be aboard will be Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin. He was invited, but said he was unable to make the trip.

The train will deadhead from Jacksonville, Florida, to the Kentucky capital city of Frankfort in the days before the Derby.

It will depart Frankfort on the morning of the Derby, which is run in late afternoon.

CSX has arrangements to lease additional passenger cars if needed and to use R.J. Corman Railroad Group tracks between Frankfort and Anchorage.

Special trains to the Derby are as old as the race itself and at one time 12 to 15 special trains descended upon Louisville on Derby Day.

Some specials came from as far away as Texas, Philadelphia, Detroit, Cleveland, Atlanta, New Orleans and Chicago.

Upwards of 200 Pullmans would be parked near Louisville Union Station, with many of them providing hotel accommodations for the railroad guests.

Corman and Norfolk Southern have also operated specials to the Derby, but it is not yet known if the NS executive train will be a visitor.

The NS office car train did not operate this year to The Masters Tournament in Augusta, Georgia.

CSX Executive Train Visits Northeast Ohio

May 29, 2015

Thursday morning was a good time to be in Berea. In about a half-hour’s time, the CSX executive train went east while just before that Amtrak’s late westbound Lake Shore Limited went past with Phase I heritage locomotive No. 156 on the point.

The Amtrak train went through about 8:35 a.m. with the CSX executive train showing up at 8:43 a.m.

Operating as train P902, the CSX train had left the St. Louis area on Wednesday and spent the night in Crestline. It left for, reportedly, Rochester, New York, on Thursday morning. Its eventual destination is Selkirk, New York.

Online reports had it passing Lagrange at 8:26 a.m., Willoughby at 9:30 a.m. and Fairview, Pennsylvania, at 10:25 a.m.

Leading the train was F40PH No. 9998 with the 9998 and 9999 trailing.  The train had eight cars with a theater car trailing.

Amtrak No. 156 had left Chicago on Tuesday as the trailing unit on the eastbound Lake Shore Limited.

No. 49 on Thursday did not arrive in Chicago until 3:11 p.m., making it nearly 5.5 hours late. It had arrived in Cleveland at 8:03 a.m., 4 hours, 36 minutes late.

No. 156 returned to Northeast Ohio on Friday, this time leading the eastbound Lake Shore Limited.  No. 48 was reported past Berea at 6 a.m. The Amtrak website reported that the train arrived in Cleveland at 6:16 a.m., 41 minutes late.