Posts Tagged ‘NS trains’

EOT at End of the Day

March 17, 2017

It was already starting to get dark when I arrived in Olmsted Falls. It has been an unusually warm January day and traffic on the Chicago Line of Norfolk Southern was unusually heavy. Almost all of it was going westbound.

What had brought me there was the promise of seeing the Lehigh Valley heritage unit. I had seen it just once before, back in 2012, in Olmsted Falls. But it had been trailing.

I got the LV H unit and waited for the train to pass. There was some sunset color to the west so I decided to see what I could do with it.

To my surprise and delight, I caught the blinking red light of the EOT just at the right time.

It created a starburst effect that provided a nice contrast with the shadows of the train against the last light of day.

Article and Photograph by Craig Sanders

Crossing the Beaver River

February 23, 2017

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The Fort Wayne Line of Norfolk Southern crosses the Beaver River in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania.

For those unfamiliar with the area, this is north of Conway Yard near Pittsburgh and even north of Rochester, Pennsylvania.

For those who may be wondering what motive power was pulling this westbound intermodal train, if you regularly follow this blog  you’ve seen it already.

It was the Pennsylvania Railroad heritage unit. Now here is the rest of the train crossing the river.

Photographs by Craig Sanders

NS Bridges of Oak Harbor

February 7, 2017

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One in a periodic series of images that I made last summer

The Toledo District of Norfolk Southern in Oak Harbor has two bridges that make for good photo props.

One bridge carries the tracks over the NS Chicago Line on the west side of town while the other carries the Toledo District over the Portage River.

In the top and middle photograph above, a westbound NS tanker train cruises westbound on the Chicago Line and ducks beneath the Toledo District.

I don’t know the age of that plate girder bridge but it might have been installed by the original Wheeling & Lake Erie. The modern day NS Toledo District was back in the day the W&LE’s mainline to Toledo.

A lot of trains of the New York Central, Penn Central, Conrail and now NS have passed beneath that bridge.

The modern W&LE has trackage rights on the NS Toledo District so you can still see Wheeling trains on the bridge.

The bottom photograph shows an NS train crossing the bridge over the Portage River in a view that was made from the Oak Harbor cemetery.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

Finding Open Views of the NS Chicago Line

November 18, 2016
A eastbound Norfolk Southern intermodal train crosses Carroll-Erie Road east of Oak Harbor.

A eastbound Norfolk Southern intermodal train crosses Carroll-Erie Road east of Oak Harbor.

One in a periodic series of images I made last summer

Photographers in the western United States seldom have to look far for an open view unless they are in dense mountainous terrain.

There are times when I envy them when searching for open views of railroads here in Ohio.

Northeast Ohio has some rolling hills, but it also has a lot of trees, which makes finding open views a major challenge.

So imagine the feeling of satisfaction we felt upon finding an open field next to the Chicago Line of Norfolk near Oak Harbor.

It was a July afternoon and we had been exploring the Chicago Line for most of the day.

The open area was adjacent to North Carroll-Erie Road. There was a soybean field next to the tracks and the road, but the plants were not so high that they blocked the view.

We had to wait awhile before we got a train and by the time we left we had seen intermodal trains in each direction.

As I had done at an earlier stop not far from here, I sought to emphasize the country feel of the environment by shooting down the road and across the soybean field.

It still didn’t have the same feel as, say, western Ohio or even Indiana or Illinois. But it still felt like the rural Midwest even if it was just a mile or two from the Lake Erie shore.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

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Sunday Afternoon at the Garfield Sag

October 12, 2016
The money shot of the day was the westbound 25T coming out of the Garfield sag. A portion of the rear of auto rack train 18N is visible in the distance.

The money shot of the day was the westbound 25T coming out of the Garfield sag. A portion of the rear of auto rack train 18N is visible in the distance.

Marty Surdyk and I were discussing Akron Railroad Club matters by phone on a Saturday evening when I mentioned that I wanted to go east of Alliance on Sunday and photograph at the Garfield sag.

Did he want to meet me in Sebring? He didn’t say yes, but didn’t say no, only to keep my cell phone on.

We exchange a few text messages on Sunday morning and he said he would be coming after he finished some errands.

By the time Marty got to Sebring it was nearly 1 p.m. and I was just finishing the tuna salad wrap I had gotten at Sheetz.

We chatted a bit with fellow ARRC member Dennis Sautter who was on his way to a meeting of the Sebring Model Railroad club, which is based in the former Pennsylvania Railroad depot in Sebring.

Then it was time to head for the sag. I’ve only been there once and it was back in the days when I was still using slide film. I was with ARRC member Roger Durfee and we stood on the rear of his Jeep to get a little more elevation.

I caught just one train, which made a nice photo, yet it was a little soft. I’ve wanted to get back to the sag ever since but wasn’t sure I could find it.

Marty pulled into an access road on the north side of the crossing of the Fort Wayne Line of Norfolk Southern and Ellett road and we waited for what seemed like an hour before a train appeared. Although named for the hamlet of Garfield and the sag is located just east of Beloit.

A westbound manifest freight showed up about 2:30 p.m. We didn’t catch its symbol, but by the time the head end reached our position at Ellett Road, the sun was behind a cloud.

We didn’t have to wait long for the next train, the eastbound 18N, an auto rack train that would be involved in a three-train meet at CP Murph.

The Cleveland Line dispatcher told the 18N it would be stopping at Murph to allow the 24M to run around it.

The dispatcher later told the westbound 25T that it would be waiting at Murph for the 24M, a hot intermodal train that carries UPS trailers.

Although the feature attraction where we were hanging out was the Garfield sag, the crossing of Ellett Road is at the top of crown that features sloping terrain in both directions. Hence the images we made of the 18N and 24M show those trains it climbing a grade out of Beloit.

The Garfield sag, though, is impressive for how with a good telephoto lens you can see the train descending and ascending.

The rear of the 18N was stopped just beyond Smith Goshen Road, the next crossing east of Ellett Road.

The 24M was not long so I was able to get the entirety of it in the sag with its head end passing the rear end of the 18N.

We elected to remain at Ellett Road and wait for the 25T. It, too, was a short train and I got all of it in the sag and all of it in sunlight.

With the three-train meet concluded, we headed to Salem. The NS executive train was coming and we would get it at Salem because the lighting would be better there.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

The stretch version of the 25T approaching Ellett road. Notice that the rear of the 18N is now out of sight.

The stretch version of the 25T approaching Ellett road. Notice that the rear of the 18N is now out of sight.

The sun decided to hide behind a cloud just as the motive power of the first train we saw reached Ellett Road.

The sun decided to hide behind a cloud just as the motive power of the first train we saw reached Ellett Road.

The rear end of the 18N is covered in shadows, but the rest of the train is in the bright afternoon sunlight.

The rear end of the 18N is covered in shadows, but the rest of the train is in the bright afternoon sunlight.

The head end of the 24M is about to overtake the rear of the 18H. The profile of the 24M sh ows that it has containers and UPS trailers.

The head end of the 24M is about to overtake the rear of the 18H. The profile of the 24M sh ows that it has containers and UPS trailers.

The head end and the rear end of the 24M both fit into this view.

The head end and the rear end of the 24M both fit into this view.

Here comes the 24M. Two trains were stopped to await its passage.

Here comes the 24M. Two trains were stopped to await its passage.

The 18N climbs the grade leading up to Ellett Road just east of Beloit.

The 18N climbs the grade leading up to Ellett Road just east of Beloit.

The rear of the 18N is just beyond Smith Gosen Road. The grain silos above the train are located in Garfield.

The rear of the 18N is just beyond Smith Gosen Road. The grain silos above the train are located in Garfield.

The visual drama of trains traversing the Garfield sag is not as pronounced when photographing them with a wide angle lens.

The visual drama of trains traversing the Garfield sag is not as pronounced when photographing them with a wide angle lens.

Colorful NS Motive Power Duo

September 15, 2016

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It wasn’t an all heritage locomotives consist, but Norfolk Southern train 64T had an unusual motive power consist when it passed through Northeast Ohio during the morning hours of Monday, Sept. 12.

Leading the train was the Erie Railroad heritage locomotive while the tailing unit was the DC to AC conversion No. 4000.

The same duo had led the train or tank cars westbound through the region last Saturday, but that was during early morning hours and NS 4000 had been leading.

Reports on HeritageUnits.com indicated that on Monday the 64T was reported at Alliance at 11:06 a.m.

No reports were made for the time that train passed through Cleveland.

Rich Thompson was able to get to Hines Hill Road near Macedonia to capture the 64T as it made its way east on the NS Cleveland Line.

Photographs by Richard Thompson

Yes, Where Was Spring?

July 8, 2016
An eastbound tanker train on the Chicago Line of Norfolk Southern in Olmsted Falls.

An eastbound tanker train on the Chicago Line of Norfolk Southern in Olmsted Falls.

A meet between an eastbound grain train and a westbound stack train.

A meet between an eastbound grain train and a westbound stack train.

Yes, where was spring?

Yes, where was spring?

With some very hot and humid weather having taken hold in Northeast Ohio in the past few days, I thought I would remind everyone of how it wasn’t that long ago that snow was falling.

I was out of town on the Sunday morning in May when snow fell on Northeast Ohio and even accumulated enough on the east side to cover some of the grass.

But I was very much on hand in early April when show covered the ground. For a winter that was unusually mild, the winter of 2016 sure had a way of hanging around.

In case you’ve forgotten, here is what spring looked like earlier this year. All of the images were made in Olmsted Falls.

Photographs by Craig Sanders

Training First Responders Train Passes By

June 27, 2016

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On late Friday afternoon the Training First Responders train of Norfolk Southern came through the Cleveland area en route to Chicago from Buffalo, New York.  I managed to catch it going through Willoughby.

The train’s schedule for the next month shows that it will be in Toledo from July 12-14; Ft Wayne, Indiana from July 19-21; and in Cincinnati from Aug 2-4.

Photographs by Todd Dillon 

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Something Out of the Ordinary

June 15, 2016

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Norfolk Southern has nine D8.5-40CW locomotives on its roster. A website maintained by Chris Toth and devoted to NS motive power reports that eight of the units are currently stored, although still active.

They carry roster numbers 8500 to 8509. All of the units were rebuilt in 2015 and in the process received new cabs. And that is how No. 8508 came to took so distinctive.

It was sent out on the system with its new cab in primer paint. At first glance, the primary appears to be a light shade of blue.

I was hanging out in Bucyrus on Easter Eve earlier this year when NS train 194 rolled into town.

No. 8508 was the third unit. An online report said it was bound for Roanoke, Virginia.

My fellow Akron Railroad Club member Todd Dillon had spotted No. 8509 in Bellevue a few days earlier. He wrote that this rebuild program had not been successful and has been suspended.

Although the 8508 isn’t much to look at, I photographed it anyway because it is something out of the ordinary.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

 

Chasing an Oil Train Down the C&P

April 18, 2016

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This past Saturday I chased an oil train from Alliance to Rochester, Pennsylvania, on the Old C&P via Yellow Creek, Ohio

Even though it had a Norfolk Southern cab signal equipped engine, the 64R was routed down the old line from Alliance.

Our first stop was at Homeworth where a double concrete arch bridge crosses a road and creek.

Next was Summitville at the top of the grade. We got it at Salineville (not pictured) and then again at Yellow Creek.

While waiting at Yellow Creek some ATV and dirt bike riders provided some entertainment.

From Yellow Creek which is the junction of the line to Mingo Junction it turned east to head for Conway.

Article and photographs by Todd Dillon