Posts Tagged ‘Painesville Ohio’

The Old and the New in Painesville

January 26, 2018

The new bridge that Norfolk Southern is building over the Grand River in Painesville is starting to take shape.

Workers have poured the concrete for the piers that will support the yet to be installed deck of the single-track bridge.

Being built just south of the existing trestle erected decades ago by the Nickel Plate Road, the new bridge is expected to open this summer.

Shown above is NS eastbound manifest freight 316 crossing the old trestle.

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Difference of Four Days

January 25, 2018

The money shot of a CSX train crossing the frozen Grand River in Painesville. After making it, Peter said, “we’re done here.”

Peter Bowler and I made plans to get out on a recent Sunday for a day of winter photography.

Yes, we planned to catch some trains, but we also wanted to get some snow and ice images, particularly along the Lake Erie shore.

Our plan was to meet at 7:20 a.m. at the Golden Gate Shopping Center  just off Interstate 271 in Mayfield Heights where I’d leave my car and Peter would drive.

Things did not get off to a promising start. My hopes that Amtrak would be running late were dashed. The eastbound Lake Shore Limited was late, but not late enough.

A check of the HeritageUnits.com site didn’t show promise of catching anything out of the ordinary.

The temperature was in the middle teens as I waited for Peter to arrive. He was late because he had lost track of the time.

That didn’t seem like a big deal at the time, but it would turn out to be good thing later.

He wanted to photograph a train on the CSX Erie West Subdivision crossing over the Grand River on a concrete arch bridge in Painesville.

Just after we arrived there, a westbound manifest freight led by a Canadian National unit ran by, but we didn’t have enough time to get into position to photograph it.

I got my radio out and it wasn’t long before we heard an eastbound auto rack train call a clear signal at CP 154. We weren’t sure how close that was, but it was closer than we knew.

Peter has a friend, Robert Butler, who said during a program he gave to the ARRC a few years ago that one of his principles of photograph is chance favors the prepared mind.

Had we done our homework and determined before arriving at what milepost the bridge is located we would have known that we needed to start making tracks through the snow to the bridge from our parking spot on the street as soon as we heard that train call the signal at CP 154.

But we didn’t and we missed the photograph, although I arrived in time to get a medicore image of some auto rack cars on the bridge. The motive power consist  had Union Pacific and BNSF units.

CSX then went on a hiatus and we talked about how the railfan gods must be punishing us.

We heard a Norfolk Southern train on the radio and motored over to check the status of the new bridge being built over the Grand River.

Finally, we did something right and made a nice photo of the old and new at the trestle. But as we waited for the NS train to show up, we heard a CSX train in the distance.

Back to the CSX bridge we went and waited for what seemed an interminable amount of time before the sun, the moon and the stars lined up in our favor with a westbound CSX stack train.

We had other objectives, so we headed out in search of them. This included getting ice on Lake Erie at Headlands Beach State Park.

Also on our “to do list” was Conneaut. As we came into town I heard a scratchy transmission on the Canadian National radio channel that told us the southbound train that day was by Albion, Pennsylvania. So getting something on the former Bessemer was out.

Conneaut Creek was frozen over and it would make a great shot of an NS train going over it on the trestle.

We waited for more than an hour, but heard nothing on the NS channel except a train in the yard doing some switching. We watched the shadows grow ever longer over the ice-covered river and creep up the bridge piers.

Not only had we struck out on getting CN, we also struck out on getting NS crossing a snowy river.

On the drive back to Cleveland we talked about doing a second trip to these same locations  later in the week. The ice wasn’t going to melt and more snow was predicted to fall on Monday.

Peter wanted another chance to do the CSX over the Grand River image.

The plan was to meet again at Golden Gate at 7:20 a.m., this time with me driving and Peter leaving his car in the lot.

I checked Amtrak after getting up around 5 a.m. and it running two hours late. I called Peter and he agreed to arrive at the shopping center much earlier so that we could get Amtrak Train 48.

Fortunately for us, No. 48 kept losing time as it went eastward even if the Amtrak computer kept predicting that it would make up time.

The temperature on the morning of our “do over” outing was even colder than it had been on Sunday. The wind chill was sub zero and quite nasty.

I said to Peter as we left the shopping center parking lot that we must be a couple of morons to be out in this weather before dawn chasing trains.

We wanted to get Amtrak on the Painesville bridge, but feared the shadows on the river would make it a medicore image at best. We instead got Amtrak in Geneva.

Then we backtracked west on U.S. 20 toward Painesville. When planning this trip I had wondered aloud if the Grand River might be ice covered.

On Sunday the river had been ice covered in Grand River village and at the mouth of Lake Erie. but not where Route 20 and CSX crossed it.

I had observed on Sunday ice chunks floating in the water and thought that by Thursday those might have backed up enough to create a more wintry look.

I parked, got out my radio and we waited. There was activity on NS, but CSX was silent.

About 15 minutes later a scratchy transmission on the CSX channel sent us scrambling toward the bridge. I was quite pleased to see that the river had frozen over since Sunday.

The train we had heard was a westbound manifest freight, perhaps the one we had missed earlier in the week.

It wasn’t long before an eastbound tank car train showed up with a BNSF unit on the point and a Citirail lease unit trailing.

Peter had expressed the hope of getting foreign power on the bridge and I wasn’t sure we’d get that. But there it was.

If anything we got better images four days later than we would have made on Sunday even if things had worked out.

Had we photographed the trains we had missed on Sunday, we might not have gone back to Painesville on Thursday. We would have missed the ice-covered river.

The moral of the story is not to botch your railfanning excursions in hopes that it will lead to something better. No, the lesson is that sometimes when things don’t go to according to plan it might be setting you up for something better if you stay with it.

The sole train we were able to photograph the way that we wanted on the Sunday when we first visited the bridge over the Grand River in Painesville.

A westbound crosses the Grand River four days after we first attempted to photograph here.

Double Shot of Amtrak’s Lake Shore Limited

January 8, 2018

Amtrak’s westbound Lake Shore Limited is running seven hours late as it rushes through Painesville, Ohio, on Sunday morning.

Amtrak train No. 48 has some heritage on the point as it passes through Northeast Ohio.

After church on Sunday morning I saw on the Amtrak website that Lake Shore Limited No. 49 left Erie at 8:57 a.m. Under normal running time that would put it at the Painesville station at 9:57 a.m.  Also, No. 48 departed Cleveland at 9:33 a.m., which would put it under normal running through Painesville at 10:03 a.m. It had Phase IV heritage unit No. 184 on the lead. Luck was on my side. No. 49 arrived at 9:50 a.m. and No. 48 showed up 11 minutes later at 10:01 a.m.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

Late 48 at 12:35 p.m. on Consecutive Fridays

January 6, 2018

I photographed Amtrak No. 48 at the Painesville station of the former New York Central  running more than six hours late at the same time – 12:35 p.m. – on consecutive Fridays. The top image shows the eastbound Lake Shore Limited on Friday, Dec. 29. The bottom photo shows the train on Friday, Jan. 5 when the air temperature was 7 degrees.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

NS Painesville Bridge to Open late Summer 2018

November 17, 2017

The new Norfolk Southern bridge over the Grand River in Painesville is expected to open in late summer 2018.

An NS spokesman told the News-Herald of Willoughby that when completed the single-track bridge will be 1,318 feet in length and supported by seven concrete support structures.

The existing bridge, which was built in 1905 by the Nickel Plate Road, has 14 support structures. That bridge was strengthened in the 1940s, but NS has decided it needs to be replaced.

Designed by HDR Engineering of Cincinnati, the bridge is being constructed by Great Lakes Construction of Hinckley.

Work began last March and trains on the NS line between Cleveland and Buffalo, New York, have continued to use the existing bridge, which sees 10 to 15 trains a day.

“Work crews now are constructing the foundations and concrete towers that will support the bridge,” said NS spokesman Jon Glass. “The bridge foundations are being drilled down to bedrock, a distance that ranges from 30 to 100 feet below ground surface.”

The foundations will have steel-reinforced concrete and the steel bridge spans that carry the track will be outfitted with a precast concrete deck. Crossties, rail, and ballast will be laid atop the concrete deck.

Glass said the new bridge will be less costly to maintain and have less of a footprint in the Grand River, thereby improving the flow of the river in that location.

NS has not disclosed how much the bridge will cost.

Erie Heritage Unit Leads 22K

July 16, 2017

I saw on Saturday morning that Erie 1068 was on 22K. I had things to do and got home about 2 p.m. and, luckily,  it wasn’t by yet. I got it at 3:20 p.m. at the Painesville trestle. Each week it will be a different view with all the construction of the new bridge underway.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

The Other LSL Did Much Better

July 7, 2017

Sunday, July 2, was not a good day to be a passenger aboard Amtrak’s westbound Lake Shore Limited.

First, the train was delayed for five hours due to flooding and track inspections between Albany and Utica, New York.

Then it ran into a Norfolk Southern work window in Ohio by which it had to make a roundabout detour move that added four more hours of delay.

By the time it reached Chicago at 7:27 p.m. it was nine hours, 42 minutes late.

But those riding the eastbound Lake Shore Limited only had to deal with the “standard” delays.

It was a mere 30 minutes late reaching New York Penn Station although it was over an hour late at some stations in New York state.

It it shown above cruising through Painesville, Ohio, east of Cleveland after departing the latter station 40 minutes off the advertised.

A noteworthy point about this train is that the P42DC locomotives pulling it are consecutively numbered 15 and 14.

Late 48 in Mid Morning in Lake County

June 14, 2017

Akron Railroad Club member Jeff Troutman sent along this image of Amtrak’s eastbound Lake Shore Limited passing through Painesville just past 9:33 a.m. on Tuesday.

At the time, No. 48 had departed Cleveland 3 hours, 17 minutes behind schedule.

An online report indicated that the lateness could be attributed in part to the need to replace a bad-ordered car in Chicago.

No. 48 was 2 hours, 38 minutes late leaving Chicago Union Station on Tuesday night.

As often happens, things didn’t get better from there. When it departed Syracuse, New York, on Tuesday afternoon, No. 48 was nearly 6 hours late.

The train arrived in New York City at 11:42 p.m., five hours and 19 minutes late. The Boston section arrived at 1:47 a.m., five hours and 46 minutes late.

Working on the New Painesville Trestle

May 24, 2017

Preparation work has begun for construction of a new bridge to carry the Lake Erie District of Norfolk Southern over the Grand River in Painesville.

During a recent visit, construction workers were working below the current trestle and at track level on both sides of the bridge preparing the site.

It appears that the new bridge will be built just south of the existing structure.

Railfans watching the work and waiting for a train said that the NS police have been patrolling  the area and making sure that “visitors” don’t get on the property.

The project is expected to take two years to complete. Shown is westbound intermodal train train 23K.

Catching Up with the Grand River Railroad

March 21, 2017

The Grand River Railroad shuttles cars between Grand River and Painesville, Ohio, connecting with CSX at the latter.

It operates a pair of EMD switchers that have been repainted into a livery similar to that of the Baltimore & Ohio.

It doesn’t go very far, just a few miles and has a bit of street running in Grand River.

Akron Railroad Club member Jeff Troutman caught the GRR last week and send along this photos.

In the top image, the train is coming down the hill and about to enter the street running.

In the bottom image it works the interchange in Painesville.

Photographs by Jeff Troutman