Posts Tagged ‘Painesville Ohio’

Wanna Go for a Ride?

June 17, 2022

It is 1967 or 1968 in what looks to be Painesville. New York Central E8A No. 4079 is on the point of this westbound passenger train. Care to take a ride?

Photograph by Robert Farkas

CSX Executive Train Passes Through Painesville

May 12, 2022

The CSX executive train made a pass through Northeast Ohio on Wednesday morning en route from Buffalo, New York, to Chicago. The train was pulled by three F40 locomotives, CSX 1, CSX 2 and CSX 3, running elephant style and adorned with the Baltimore & Ohio-inspired livery.

The 12-car train is shown above passing through Painesville by the former New York Central passenger station at 8:10 a.m.

Featured in the middle image is dome car Moonlight Dome. The third image shows platform observation car John T. Collinson and theater car W. Thomas Rice.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

A Very Productive Sunday Morning

March 7, 2022

We were up early on Sunday for a pancake breakfast at the Willoughby Hills Community Center, a visit to Lake Metroparks Farmpark, grocery shopping at Heinen’s in Chardon, but also, of course, a great catch of a two-and-a-half late eastbound Lake Shore Limited with Midnight Blue P42DC No. 100 on the point and Downeaster F40 cab car No. 90213 in the consist. It was ideal weather of sunny and 62 degrees but very windy. We accomplished all this by noon.

It is not clear why the F40 cab car was on No. 48. It had gone west on Saturday morning on No. 49 only to turn around in Chicago and go back east that same night.

In the photographs above, No. 48 is shown passing the former New York Central passenger station in Painesville.

Article and Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

Catching up With the NKP Heritage Unit

March 4, 2022

I saw Wednesday night that CSX train Q567 with the Nickel Plate Road heritage unit of Norfolk Southern was coming up the Hudson River. I was hoping I would have some good luck on Thursday for my first photographs of 2022. I waited a little over an hour and it did arrive about 1 p.m. Despite being a cold 27 degrees, it was sunny in the perfect spot and I came away very happy with the results. The train was captured at milepost 153 in Painesville on the Erie West Subdivision.

Article and Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

Super Sunday Memory

February 13, 2022

For a few years in the decade of the 2010s. Ed Ribinskas, Marty Surdyk and myself got together during the winter for a day railfanning in Lake County. Some of those outings occurred on Super Bowl Sunday. It wasn’t planned that way. It just happened.

Perhaps the most memorable of those Super Bowl Sunday outings occurred on Feb. 2, 2014. It had rained the day before and then snowed overnight. The result was some of the most beautiful winter conditions I’ve seen during a railfan photo outing. Nearly everything was coated in snow and it stayed that way throughout the day.

CSX was rather busy on that 2014 Sunday. It was the height of the crude oil by rail boom from the Bakken Formation of North Dakota and Montana. Several of the trains we photographed were tank car trains led by BNSF motive power. Let me tell you pumpkins look good in the snow.

But today I am spotlighting an image made early during our outing. Marty had picked me up at my house and we had just picked up Ed at his house in Painesville. We were on our way to the CSX crossing at Bowhall Road when we crossed the former Painesville, Fairport & Eastern.

This is now a Norfolk Southern branch line to Fairport Harbor to serve a chemical plant and, perhaps, a few other customers.

I probably made this image by rolling down the driver’s side window and getting some grab shots as we crossed the tracks, which are now known as the Fairport Industrial Track. You will note in the image above milepost 3, which is measured from Perry where the ex-FP&E connects with the NS Lake Erie District.

At one time the FP&E extended beyond Perry to Unionville but that track is now gone.

As nice a setting as the ex-FP&E line is at Bowhall Road was, I knew the odds of getting a train here were slim to none because the local out of Conneaut that serves the branch didn’t run on Sunday. So I made a few photographs on the fly and we continued on to a busier rail line.

Trestle Tales: The End Less Photographed

February 9, 2022

Most of the images Ed Ribinskas has made of the former Nickel Plate Road trestle over the Grand River in Painesville were made at the east end of the bridge.

He stayed away from the west end for several years to avoid trespassing on the property of Coe Manufacturing. Another factor was that it would be a tight shot because of tree growth that dated back to the end of the steam locomotive era.

After Coe Manufacturing closed and its building were razed, Ed felt more comfortable scouting for photo angles at the west end.

Nonetheless, it was still a tight shot. The best time of year to photograph the west end of the trestle was during the winter.

“Probably the very few times I photographed there resulted in my best and favorites,” Ed wrote.

The bottom two photographs were made of westbound manifest freight 145 at about 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 2, 2014 (Super Bowl Sunday).

With Ed that day were fellow Akron Railroad Club members Marty Surdyk and Craig Sanders.

The top two images were made in early afternoon on May 6, 2018.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

Trestle Tales: Finding the Out of the Ordinary

February 7, 2022

Rivers are not static. They shift course and their levels rise and fall. These developments can damage bridge abutments as happened in spring 1985 when NS had to reroute some trains and issue slow orders for others until the Painesville trestle over the Grand River could be repaired (top photo).

Over time, some bridge abutments have been replaced, the results of which can be seen in the images of the Triple Crown RoadRailer trains crossing the trestle in April 1989.

The former Nickel Plate Road route between Cleveland and Buffalo never had the high level of traffic as the parallel CSX and former New York Central route, but it had its share of out-of-the ordinary sightings.

On Oct. 27, 2004, Norfolk Southern sent an Operation Lifesaver train from Rockport Yard in Cleveland to Ashtabula and back.

The encroaching vegetation is evident on the east end of the bridge as compared to what it was in the views recorded 15 years earlier.

Another unique movements that crossed the trestle was the eastbound Lake Shore Limited using the NS route due to a CSX derailment in Painesville. Amtrak Train 48 was photographed on Oct. 13, 2007.

On July 23, 2015, a large crowd of railfan photographs turned out to photograph Nickel Plate Road 2-8-2 no. 765 cross another NKP institution on a ferry move from Cleveland (Rockport Yard) to Ashtabula to be in position to pull public excursions between Ashtabula and Youngstown.

Finally, on Aug. 3, 2016, the NS business train led by F units passed through Painesville.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

Trestle Tales: Vestiges of the N&W

February 6, 2022

The Nickel Plate Road built a steel trestle over the Grand River in Painesville in 1905. It continued to stand through two changes in railroad ownership, the transition from steam to diesel power, and the end of passenger service.

But even a structure as imposing as a steel trestle is not forever. In March 2017 contractors hired by Norfolk Southern began building a new bridge largely constructed of pre-cast concrete.

That 1,318-foot structure opened to rail traffic on Sept. 30, 2018, when eastbound intermodal train 206 was the first train to use it.

The contractor then began removing the trestle, which was located north of the new bridge, and before the end of the year it was gone.

Since 2003 Ed Ribinskas has lived minutes away from the Painesville trestle. He attended Riverside High School, which was and still is a stone’s throw away from the trestle’s location.

The trestle appears in many of his railroad photographs made on the Nickel Plate Road mainline in Painesville.

This is the first of series of articles with photographs showing how the environment around the trestle and rail operations on the ex-NKP mainline between Cleveland and Buffalo have changed over the years.

Today, Ed looks back to the late 1980s during the first decade of NS operation.

In that era, the trestle was mostly clear of trees and brush. The top two images are thought to be train CN 90 and were made on March 29, 1986.

The CN 90 is shown the next day in the third photograph running long hood forward, which was the usual operating practice during the Norfolk & Western era of the 1970s and 1980s.

The last photo shows Norfolk & Western Class J No. 611 headed to Erie, Pennsylvania, on a ferry move on Aug. 1, 1986.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

Here Comes the NS 145 in Painesville

January 30, 2022

For several years in late January or early February, I would get together with Ed Ribinskas and Marty Surdyk for a day of railfanning in Lake County. Sometimes Jeff Troutman would join us.

We would spend much of the day on the CSX Erie West Subdivision and the Lake Erie District of Norfolk Southern in and near Perry.

This being Northeast Ohio, we always expected winter weather. By that I mean snow. But not every year saw bountiful snow on the ground despite Lake County being in a region of Ohio known for heavy snow.

During a few of those outings, the day was dark and dreary with little evidence of the beauty of winter.

That was not the case, though, during our outing of Feb. 2, 2014.

Overnight it had rained and then snow fell as the temperatures dropped.

The wet conditions meant that snow clung to just about everything in sight and pretty much stayed that way all day.

The result was one of the best winter railfanning outings I’ve ever had.

Several image from that day I’ve posted on this site before and Marty has shown during Akron Railroad Club programs some of the slides he made that day.

Ed won a monthly “best photograph” contest at Dodd Camera and received a free framed enlargement of that image that he has hanging on a wall of the dining room of his house.

That winning image was made late in the afternoon of westbound NS manifest freight 145 crossing the trestle over the Grand River in Painesville.

Last week I was rummaging through some of my digital file folders from early 2014 when I came across the images I made on Feb. 2.

Much to my surprise, I’ve only posted a few of those images on my Flickr page.

So I spent a couple days selecting and processing in Photoshop some images that had never been processed.

Shown above is a three-image sequence of the 145 crossing the now replaced Grand River trestle.

We were standing just beyond the west end of the bridge with all of us taking slightly different angles. What I liked about this series is how each image offers a different perspective.

The sequence begins with the train approaching the trestle from the east end, which captures that sense of anticipation that something memorable is about to happen.

It continues with an image of the train about halfway across the trestle and offers that compressed view common with images made with a telephoto lens.

The final image is what many would consider the money shot. Ed won the photo contest with an image similar to this one.

The train has reached the west edge of the bridge but is not yet off of it. The image combines the elements of a close train with a wide scenic view in a sort of convergence.

When I originally processed that image nearly eight years ago I converted it to black and white. There wasn’t much color in the scene and the conditions just seemed to say “black and white world.”

But after working with the image in color I decided it looks good in that form, too.

This day was one of the very few times I ever photographed NS operations on the Painesville trestle at the west end. I have numerous images from the east end, but rarely sought to do the west end.

The trestle had been built decades earlier by the Nickel Plate Road and was one of those structures that was always there even though ownership of the railroad changed to Norfolk & Western and then to Norfolk Southern.

It was always there even after the steam locomotives were retired, after the passenger trains were discontinued and after one generation of diesel locomotives had made way for another.

Generations of railroaders hired out and later retired after having crossed this bridge countless times during their long careers.

And then, so it seemed, one day the trestle was gone, replaced by a bridge that seems nondescript by comparison.

When viewed in this context, I’m even more pleased that we took the time in 2014 to get the photographs that we did of the 145 crossing the trestle.

Interestingly, that day was the only time I ever photographed an NS train crossing the trestle from ground level. But that is a story for another day.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

Late in the NYC Era in Painesville

December 2, 2021

John Woodard took me railfanning near Painesville in early 1967. Here is an image from that outing. A man on the ground is talking to the engineer of New York Central F7A No. 1685. The A-B-A set of Nos. 1685, 3462 and sits in the sun for a while before moving on.

Photograph by Robert Farkas