Posts Tagged ‘NS dimension train’

A Whatisit on the NS Cleveland Line

December 15, 2017

I made reference to this train in a previous post, but for those who missed it or forgot it, it is a westbound Norfolk Southern dimension train on the Cleveland Line carrying two large pieces of equipment and operating as symbol freight L053.

I’m told this equipment is transformers used to step up or down electrical voltage for transmission.

As a railfan, I love it when these special moves are out on the line because the dispatcher tends to talk to them a lot to let them know what opposing trains they will meet.

When you are hunting for trains to photograph you can never have too much information about what it out there.

My intent had been to photograph a train crossing the Cuyahoga River along Ravenna Road near Lake Rockwell and the Akron water works plant. I’d photographed it once before, but that was several years ago.

Akron doesn’t own the Cuyahoga River here, but it sure does what it can to try to discourage people from being here. There are fences all around Lake Rockwell along with no trespassing signs.

Over the years, I’ve seen people parked beneath the NS bridge over Ravenna Road and fishing in the Cuyahoga on the south side of the NS bridge over the river. But I’ve never hung out here to wait for and photograph trains.

Within the past year or so, someone created a public canoe launch site, complete with a parking lot and signs. That creates at least the aura of it being a public location where railfans can make photographs of NS trains on the Cleveland Line.

My strategy was to sit in the parking lot at Towner’s Woods park about a mile to the east and monitor the radio frequency. From there I can hear the detector at Rootstown as well as trains calling the signal at CP 86 in Ravenna.

That would give me ample time to motor down to the bridge and get into position.

And so it was with the dimension train. I got the photographs that I wanted and was about to turn and head back to my car when the eastbound 20E came charging past.

I had heard the dispatcher tell the L053 that the 20E would be the next train he would meet. But by the time I got to the canoe launch I had forgotten about it.

That was a close call. Had that intermodal train shown up a minute earlier, it would have blocked the L053. But this time at least things worked out to near perfection.

I got my westbound train on the bridge and I got a reflection shot in the calm waters of the Cuyahoga in late day light. You can’t complain about that.