Posts Tagged ‘NS Wabash heritage unit’

Wabash H Unit Leads NS OCS

November 15, 2020

Norfolk Southern’s executive train made a pass through Northeast Ohio on Saturday led by the Wabash heritage locomotive.

It traveled the Fort Wayne Line and reported by Crestline at 7:32 a.m. and Orrville at 12:38 p.m.

The six-car train was headed back to its home base in Altoona, Pennsylvania, where it arrived around 11 p.m.

It is shown above passing through Canton.

Photographs by Todd Dillon

Good Fortune

March 9, 2020

I finally had some good luck on Friday and Saturday in catching Norfolk Southern heritage locomotives.

I saw on Heritage that the Pennsylvania Railroad H unit was working as a DPU on train 316 and I caught it at Riverside Drive at 6:11 p.m.

Also on Friday I saw that the Wabash heritage unit was trailing on train 14M, which was headed for Buffalo, New York.

I was hoping the 1070 would return on the 15M on Saturday and be leading. Once I confirmed with Jeff Troutman that that was the case I headed to Conneaut.

The 15M operates from Buffalo to Conway Yard near Pittsburgh.

I initially caught the 15M at North Amboy Road after it left Conneaut once the eastbound intermodal train 206 had cleared the yard.

I also got the Wabash H unit backing around the connection at Ashtabula and then approaching Carson on the Youngstown Line.

Now if luck is with me, I thought, the 8102 will come back through Northeast Ohio on Sunday leading train 149.

The last two times a Heritage unit was a DPU on the 316 it was leading westbound on the 149 two days later.

And luck was with me. I went out on Sunday morning with Marty Surdyk and we not only bagged the Pennsy H unit leading the 149 at Perry but also caught the Central of New Jersey heritage unit leading the train 310 bound for Binghamton, New York, as it crossed the Grand River in Painesville.

Check this site later this week for those photographs and a story about that chase, which included taking in an ice hockey game in which the Mentor Ice Breakers edged the Delaware Thunder 6-5 in a wild game that lasted nearly four hours.

Catching three heritage units in two days is new for me and all of them were in beautiful weather.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

Am I Allowed to Post These?

May 1, 2018

As you can clearly see, the top image features the Interstate heritage unit of Norfolk Southern. You can also clearly see that No. 8105 is trailing in the motive power consist of a westbound stack train passing through Olmsted Falls on the NS Chicago Line.

The bottom image features the Wabash heritage unit in the motive power consist of NS westbound manifest freight 309.

And you know what they say, “trail equals fail.” Maybe so but I photographed them anyway and I posted them anyway. Feel better now?

Wabash Heritage Unit Makes Appearance

March 23, 2017

The Wabash H-unit made a pass through Cleveland on Tuesday leading the 21Q. I was lucky enough to be able to get off work in time to catch it. As luck would have it, 21Q was held up near where I had set up to photograph it. Both scenes are in Olmsted Falls, the first one at Milepost 196 (Lewis Road) and then near the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern depot.

Photographs by Roger Durfee

The Wabash Was in Town

August 3, 2016


Norfolk Southern train 54K had the Wabash heritage unit leading earlier in the week on Monday. It is seen here passing the BF12 at Motor Yard. It led the train into Pennsylvania and as of Wednesday morning was reported heading west on the point of another NS train.

Photograph by Roger Durfee

Whew! That Was Close

June 4, 2014


On Sunday of Memorial Day weekend I was following the progress of the Wabash and Southern heritage units on a Norfolk Southern train.

Initially, Ursula and I were planning on a mid-afternoon dinner at Red Lobster in Ashtabula

But when I saw that the duo was approaching the Pittsburgh area around 3:30 p.m., I suggested that we do Applebee’s in Willoughby and politely suggested that we drive down to Bedford for an hour and a half after dinner

We had our meal then got to the tot lot at about 5:30 p.m. The only warning that I would have would be the westbound signal and a lot of luck.

We would have to leave by 7:15 to be home by 8 to Skype with my cousin in Arizona.

The first two westbounds were just that.  At about 6:50 p.m. the ultimate horror began happening again.

All I could see was what happened to Jeff Troutman and I a couple of months ago with the Norfolk & Western heritage unit. You may recall that No. 8103 leading a westbound through Bedford on Track No. 2 when an eastbound came along on Track No. 1 and blocked out view of the H unit.

I heard the grinding of an approaching eastbound and the signals for Track No. 2 westbound showed an approach indication.

The crossing gates for West Glendale went down but shortly thereafter they went back up. Then the West Grace gates went down and the Glendale went down again

Which train was going to get there first? And would it be what I was waiting for?

I didn’t want to cross the tracks because the early evening sun was in the perfect position.  Also, I was praying it would be the train with the Wabash unit on the lead and that it was not going to be blocked by the other train because I didn’t want to look like a complete fool in front of my wife.

Then I heard the locomotive horns and they sounded like they should.  But would it be the Wabash?  Thank God! It all worked out, but just barely.

Article and Photographs by Edward Ribinskas




Productive Train Chase on Saturday

May 19, 2014


I ended up chasing the 25V with the Southern and Wabash heritage units on Saturday.

But first I went to Kent where I caught an Iowa, Chicago & Eastern engine, the City of Lansing, leading a CSX train.

I’ve been told that all of the IC&E SD40-2s will have been sold to Genesee & Wyoming by the end of this month so that is now a rare catch.

Then it was off to Brady Lake where I caught the 25V.  My next stop was Berea where I got other trains before the 25V showed up.  One of those trains had a Union Pacific/Chicago & North Western patch job in the consist.

After getting the 25V again I had a decision to make. My plan was to wait for the Z4R oil train with the Penn Central heritage unit leading.

However, that train had been sitting in Toledo all afternoon – it was now 4 p.m. – and it didn’t look like it would get moving anytime soon.

I was told the 25V would change crews at Bellevue so that would be a good opportunity to catch it a few more times. So, off to Bellevue I went.

After arriving at Kimball, I discovered that I had missed the Penn Central unit by 15 minutes, such are the breaks.

Well, I waited and waited, and waited some more.  Finally, an ethanol train came after an hour later but no 25V.  I decided to head into Bellevue and at least see some moving trains.

I went back to the Route 4 overpass for some more activity and finally the 25V arrived.

I managed to get it by the old Pennsylvania Railroad tower and again at Route 18 west of town with the sun finally making an appearance.

Article and Photographs by Todd Dillon








Double Shot of H Units at the Dog Pound

May 18, 2014



After watching this pair make a couple of trips past me while working last week, I was finally able to snag a photo on Saturday. As has been the case in Northeast Ohio  lately, the sun was pretty much non existent. I wanted a different spot other than the usual East 26th Street or Berea areas, so I entered a parking lot off East Third Street in downtown. It was also a location that was easily recognizable with the Browns stadium in the background. The location also allowed a broadside of the two.

Article and Photographs by Roger Durfee

Trailing and Failing, Again!

May 18, 2014

NS 205 approaches Stryker, Ohio, in late afternoon. The trailing unit of the two-unit motive power consist is the Wabash heritage unit. I am poised to "fail" in getting an image of it.

NS 205 approaches Stryker, Ohio, in late afternoon. The trailing unit of the two-unit motive power consist is the Wabash heritage unit. I am poised to “fail” in getting an image of it.

Here is Exhibit A for why serious railfan photographers live by the motto of "trail equal fail." You can't see all of the markings of the locomotive when the nose is facing away from the camera.

Here is Exhibit A for why serious railfan photographers live by the motto of “trail equal fail.” You can’t see all of the markings of the locomotive when the nose is facing away from the camera.

Another reason why trail equals fail: the Wabash flag logo can't be seen from this side angle.

Another reason why trail equals fail: the Wabash flag logo can’t be seen from this side angle.

The grain elevator in Stryker looms in the background as the 205 chases the setting sun toward Chicago.

The grain elevator in Stryker looms in the background as the 205 chases the setting sun toward Chicago.

I really love that bit of railfan photographer wisdom about photographing Norfolk Southern heritage locomotives when they are in a trailing position: Trail equals fail.

I don’t know who created that pithy little saying or when. I first saw it on in a posting by a guy who takes his railroad photography seriously.

At the time, there were occasional threads about the merits of going out to photograph a heritage unit when it wasn’t leading.

The heritage units had been in service less than a year and some guys were hyper excited about getting all 20 of them “in the wild,” meaning in revenue service on the road.

Someone would post that the NS whatever heritage unit was in the motive power consist of train whatever.

Another guy would reply that it was trailing and, hence, wasn’t worth the effort to get.

That would cause the original poster or someone else to shoot back a reply that suggested that it was imperative to go out and photograph heritage units.

And on and on it went. Somewhere in the dialogue someone would drop the line about trailing equaling failure.

The trail equals fail adage caught my attention because it is brief and to the point. Trail equals fail.

But it also awakened the contrarian in me because it begs the question of “always?”

Like so many definitive “laws,” the trail equals fail bromide doesn’t leave room for gray areas.

I once saw a photograph of the Interstate heritage unit taken from the side as the train crossed a stone viaduct somewhere in the East. It was, in my mind, a quite striking photograph.

But it had a fatal problem. The Interstate unit was not the lead locomotive. So, the photographer failed, right? No, not at all.

On a Saturday in early May I was headed home with a friend after having spent a productive day chasing Nickel Plate Road No. 765 on the NS Chicago Line as it pulled an employee appreciation special.

My friend had been following online the progress of the Wabash heritage unit on train 205. Of course we knew that it was trailing, but what the heck.

Based on the reports, I guessed that we might be able to intercept the 205 at Stryker, Ohio, without having to spend too much time waiting for it.

I knew that I was going to “fail,” but I wanted to get it anyway for one of those silly little reasons that railfans conjure up to achieve “success.”

Earlier that day, we had photographed the New York Central heritage unit, but it had been on static display at the Toledo National Train Day celebration.

It wasn’t “in the wild” and it wasn’t leading anything. Of course it wasn’t trailing, either. So that was a “success.”

Getting the Wabash unit would give me two heritage locomotives in one day. I haven’t had a heritage two-fer since last May and that also was on a day when I was chasing the 765.

Nearly 20 minutes after we had parked in Stryker on the main street in front of a take home and bake pizza store, I heard the 205 call a signal.

Sure enough the Wabash H unit was trailing and, even worse, its nose was facing east.

The second photograph of this four-image sequence is Exhibit A of why some serious railfan photographer concocted the axiom of trail equals fail.

From a composition perspective, it’s a mediocre image. You can barely see that it’s the Wabash heritage unit.

But I got the shot, or should I say I got the heritage unit. I had photographed the Wabash unit a month early at the Akron Railroad Club’s Dave McKay Day in Berea. It was trailing that day, too.

But all is well with the world because I’ve also photographed the Wabash H unit leading a train, twice as a matter of fact.

My friend and I had laughed about photographing the Wabash H unit trailing before the train arrived and after we resumed our journey homeward bound.

He teased me about posting my image on Trainorders and bragging about how TOTALLY AWESOME it is. Thing is, someone on that list actually might think it is a good shot.

I don’t photograph for a living. That is the case with most railfan photographers. It’s a hobby even if many take it seriously and seek to create the best images that they can using the same equipment and techniques employed by professional photographers.

I can see why trail equals fail got started and why many photographers live by it.

Those photographers will say – correctly – that they would not make a special effort to go find a train with a heritage unit in the trailing position. I wouldn’t either.

But this train was nearby, so I invested some time in photographing it. I had fun doing it and isn’t that the point of railfanning?

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

2 Heritage Units Sunday in Cleveland

December 26, 2013


Sunday, Dec. 22 was just a nice day to be out. A rare bit of sunshine and hanging out with some friends made for a good day.

The appearance of two Norfolk southern heritage units didn’t hurt either, the Pennsylvania Railroad unit on a coke train and the Wabash on No. 316.

A local (BR92?) got the call to take the PRR powered coke train down the hill to Campbell Road Yard.

Once that task was complete, the power was split and the PRR unit headed back up the hill solo to grab stone empties at Shelly Materials in Linndale.

In a bit of perfect timing, the 316 had pulled up and stopped in preparation to set off a long cut of cars at Rockport just as the PRR unit was pulling up to Linndale yard.

The result was the PRR meets the Wabash just west of CP 490 on the Cloggsville Line in Linndale (Cleveland).

Earlier in the day at Campbell Road Yard, the PRR unit is shown pulling up to the yard office then parked with the steel mill in the background.

In the fading light of the day the PRR unit sits tied on to empties at Linndale. Note their ex Lehigh Valley U23B off to the right and the Keybank building in downtown Cleveland on the left.

I had stopped earlier to bag the BX01 departing Campbell Road Yard. The first view is waiting for permission up the hill.

The second view if of the second one departing. The diamonds under No. 3401 are the crossing of the ex-Baltimore & Ohio’s CT&V Sub.

The diamond just ahead of the train is the former B&O CL&W Sub. Both lines are now owned by CSX.

Article and Photographs by Roger Durfee