Posts Tagged ‘steam locomotives’

FtWRHS to Acquire Another NKP Steamer

November 15, 2016

The Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society plans to move Nickel Plate Road No. 624 from Hammond to Fort Wayne, Indiana.

nkpThe 2-8-2 Mikado-type steamer is owned by the city of Hammond and will have a new home in the Headwaters Junction complex that the FtWRHS is building.

No. 624 will need cosmetic restoration to return it to its appearance when it was operational.

It is not clear yet if the 624 will be restored to operating condition.

In Search of Keystone State Steam: 3

November 4, 2016
Everett Railroad No. 11 passes Loop Road.

Everett Railroad No. 11 passes Loop Road.

Last in a series

No sooner did Ed Ribinskas return from a four-day weekend in search of steam in eastern Pennsylvania, but he was on the road again to capture steam on the Everett Railroad in central Pennsylvania.

Based in Hollidaysburg near Altoona, the Everett like the Reading Blue Mountain & Northern that Ed had chased a week earlier, is a short-line freight railroad that also operates steam locomotives.

Ed and fellow Akron Railroad Club member Jeff Troutman spent the weekend of Oct. 15-16 chasing Everett’s 2-6-0 Mogul-type steamer while also spending time on Horseshoe Curve.

He was able to get No. 11 in Holidaysburg and at such intermediate points as along Loop Road, at Kladder and crossing the Little Juniata River.

Everett No. 11 was built in 1920 by Alco’s Cooke Works in Patterson, New Jersey.

Built by Alco with an eye toward export to Cuba, No. 11 never made it to the island nation and instead worked for the Narragansett Pier Railroad in Rhode Island.

It later worked in New York state before being retired in 1949. It had a series of owners before winding up on the Everett Railroad in 2006.

It was stored for a time on the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad before being restored to operating condition.

It returned to operation in October 2015.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

dsc_3672-x

dsc_3671-x

dsc_3675-x

dsc_3681

dsc_3688

dsc_3691-x

dsc_3694-x

dsc_3699-x

 

In Search of Keystone State Steam: Part 2

November 3, 2016

dsc_3509

Second of a series.

Eastern Pennsylvania is known for its anthracite coal. Often called hard coal, anthracite is known for its sub-metallic luster, high carbon content, lack of impurities, and having the highest calorific content of all types of coal except graphite.

The mining of anthracite in Pennsylvania is not what it used to be, but it is still mined and there remains a relatively stable market for it.

In Ashland, Pennsylvania, the Pioneer Tunnel Coal mine takes visitors inside a horizontal drift mine that extend 1,800 feet into the side of the Mahanoy Mountain.

Today passengers can ride on a three-quarter mile ride around Mahanoy Mountain behind the Henry Clay, an 0-4-0 tank engine that was built in 1927 by the Vulcan Works.

A highlight of that trip is viewing the remains of the strip mines, but the journey ends at the Pioneer Tunnel, which is open to visitors.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

dsc_3511

dsc_3531

dsc_3536

PM 1225 75th Anniversary Trip set on Saturday

November 3, 2016

Pere Marquette 2-8-4 No. 1225 will be in action this weekend pulling a sold-out excursion from Owosso to Clare, Michigan.

Steam Railroading InstituteThe trip is in part an anniversary celebration for the 75-year-old locomotive that was built by Lima Locomotive Works in October 1941.

The train will depart Owosso at 8 a.m. and is expected to reach Clare at noon, traveling over 71 miles of former Ann Arbor Railroad trackage.

The departure from Owosso is expected to be at 4 p.m.

In Clare, actors in 1940s dress will welcome the 1225 with, a brass band, birthday cake, and tours of the town’s train station that was used by the Ann Arbor and Pere Marquette.

Some of My Faves of NKP 767 on the CVSR

October 24, 2016

dsc_3382-x

dsc_3399-x

dsc_3414-x

I got out twice last month to chase Nickel Plate Road No. 767 when it ran on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad.

In this post, I’ll show three of my best images from my chase of Sept. 25. That was the day that the Akron Railroad Club had its picnic at the Valley Picnic Area.

The day began early with a drive to Jaite to catch the ferry move of the train from the Fitzwater maintenance facility to Akron.

It was cool and foggy that morning and the 767 was putting out a lot of steam and smoke. The top image shows the ferry move passing the restored train order station at Jaite.

I returned to Jaite to photograph the first passenger trip back to Akron, which is shown in the middle image. The smoke show wasn’t too bad, either.

For the last trip of the day back to Akron, I drove to Merriman Woods to catch the train at milepost 43. While there I saw fellow ARRC member Roger Durfee.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

N&W 611 To Return to Roanoke on Oct. 24

October 20, 2016

Norfolk & Western No. 611 will return to Roanoke, Virginia, this month during a welcome back event at the Virginia Transportation Museum.

Fire up 611The J-Class 4-8-4 has been at the North Carolina Transportation Museum in Spencer, North Carolina.

It will leave in the early morning hours from Spencer and travel over Norfolk Southern tracks to Roanoke.

The VTM will open at 7 a.m. with the 611 expected to arrive between 7:30 and 9:30 a.m.

The steamer is expected to operate under its own power with a dead head consist.

Museum visitors will have the opportunity to purchase breakfast and lunch at the museum grounds.

For an additional $25 fee, visitors will be permitted to climb into the locomotive cab and blow the whistle.

Roger’s Favorite NKP 767 Photographs

October 10, 2016

nkp767peninsula01

nkp767akron01

While I didn’t do much with the Nickel Plate Road No.767, a.k.a. as 765,  this year, mostly due to being out west, I did manage two photos I liked. The top one shows the locomotive and its train coming into Peninsula and the other image is at MP 43 in Akron in a nice “rods down” action grab.

Photographs by Roger Durfee

Chasing That 767: Part 3

October 7, 2016
The chase of Nickel Plate Road No. 767 on Sunday, Sept. 25 began with a new location and a successful venture.

The chase of Nickel Plate Road No. 767 on Sunday, Sept. 25 began with a new location and a successful venture. The train is crossing the Cuyahoga River north of Peninsula.

Unlike the previous two days that I had spent chasing Nickel Plate Road 2-8-4 No. 767, Sunday, Sept. 25 dawned sunny and clear.

It was a beautiful day to chase a steam train and have an early autumn picnic in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

Twenty-seven Akron Railroad Club members and guests showed up to eat hamburgers and hot dogs along with snacks and desserts.

I began my third day chasing the 767 by walking the towpath trail to the culvert where the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad tracks cross over the trail north of Peninsula.

My objective was to get a shot I’d never done with any steam locomotive.

In 2015, I had photographed the 765 crossing the Cuyahoga from the west side of the bridge. But now I wanted to get the view from the east, something I had done just once with a CVSR train.

That image had been made, by coincidence, on the day of the ARRC’s October meeting.

The east side is a tougher shot than the west side because the angle is tighter. I had it all to myself.

Later, I arrived in Boston Mill just as the train was backing up for its first photo runby.

I made a few images, but got nothing of note. I walked to the east side of the crossing of Boston Mills Road with the idea of getting the 767, the Boston Mill station and the ski resort in the background. It worked out all right.

It was too early to do the goldenrod field shot, so I went to Jaite for a going away image that I ended up liking better than what I had made here the week before.

While at Jaite, I met ARRC member Steve Heister. I would see several ARRC members on this day and the number of photographers trackside on Sept. 24 and 25 was greater than what I had seen on Sept. 18. It must have been the good weather.

After Jaite, I went to Brecksville, which was quite crowded. I had to park on the access road, which wasn’t a bad thing because it would enable me to get a faster getaway. I would need that in order to get to Deep Lock Quarry in time.

My objective in Brecksville was to get the 767 and its train along the Cuyahoga River from the Old Station Road bridge.

There were dozens of people with cameras staking out their photo spot when I arrived at Brecksville station.

The woman standing to my immediate left had two dogs. She had arrived around 7:45 a.m. just as the ferry move to Akron was passing beneath her as she drove over the Ohio Route 82 bridge. Steam and smoke from the 767 below had risen to road level and it was quite foggy.

I immediately wished I had made my way to the Valley much earlier. I had not because I had been out all day on Saturday and got home late. I didn’t want to leave home early on Sunday.

Fog can make for some dramatic images. It was cool and that meant lots of steam. I should have gone for it.

I’ve seen some images made by other photographers of the ferry move and they were pretty good.

As I stood on Old Station Road bridge, it began sinking in that I would not be able to do all of the locations with the 767 that I had envisioned. There wasn’t enough time and opportunity.

The image I had gone to get at Brecksville turned out so-so. The better image was the wide view showing the river, the Route 82 bridge and the train. I wished I had stayed with that image longer than I did.

There was plenty of time to get to Deep Lock because the 767 made an unexpected stop north of Jaite when some daisy pickers ran across the tracks as the train neared their position.

The images I made at Deep Lock met my expectations. It was time to get to the ARRC picnic.

Marty and I had planned the picnic about two weeks before it was held. We had a complication when we gave the wrong name of the picnic site and the September meeting was moved back a week due to parking lot resurfacing at New Horizons Christian Church.

Helped by good weather and the lure of a steam locomotive, the turnout exceeded our expectations. We set up a photo line to catch the northbound move of the afternoon excursion out of Akron.

Many ARRC members stayed at the picnic site to get the southbound return to Akron about two hours later.

I photographed the first Boston Mill photo runby, but skipped the second one. Instead, I drove north on Riverview.

I saw Kyle Ori standing with his wonder pole next to the road near the Columbia Run Picnic Area.

The pole enables him to gain elevation of as much as 30 feet with his camera. He uses his smart phone to control the camera.

I decided to catch the northbound run of the steam train here rather than trying for the goldenrod field.

As the train went by, my camera lens began malfunctioning. It would not zoom past about 85 mm.

I twisted it a few times and finally got it out to 135 mm. But the auto focus wasn’t working properly and all of the images I made at my maximum focal length were blurry.

The same thing happened at the Chippewa Creek bridge where fellow ARRC members Ed Ribinskas and Jeff Troutman were already set up when I arrived.

This time the 135 mm images came out all right, but the wide angle images of the 767 crossing the bridge were blurry. This was not a good thing.

The remainder of the ARRC picnic gang was standing with their cameras in hand by the side of Riverview as I drove past.

My intent was to drive into Akron and get the train at milepost 43 in the Merriman Woods housing development. Riverview Road is closed south of Bath Road and the detour pointed west on Bath.

I’m unfamiliar with the roads west of the tracks so I decided to stay at Bath Road and go for the sure thing.

I had not photographed south of Indigo Lake during the two-week stay of NKP 767 and wanted to get something on the southern end.

I saw a small clump of wild black-eyed Susans next to the tracks and placed those in the foreground as I got a low angle of the 767. The autofocus function worked fairly well.

It was nearly 4:30 p.m. and I was feeling discouraged due to my camera issues. I still didn’t have the goldenrod shot but there was time to get it during the ferry move to the Fitzwater maintenance facility from Akron.

I elected instead to head home. I had done the goldenrod shot with the 765 and with my camera lens on the fritz I might not get the 767 in focus or get the focal length I desired.

I was tired and having a beer and a snack while watching the rest of the Sunday afternoon football games sounded enticing.

The next day I took my camera to Dodd Camera in Cleveland. The store manager removed the lens and shook it. We could hear something rattling inside. The lens was broken.

But this story has a happy ending. The estimated repair cost was $200 to $300 if the camera could be economically repaired. A comparable new zoom lens would cost between about $400 to $600.

I was elated when Dodd sent me an email with a repair cost of $177. The lens has been fixed and is back on my camera.

I didn’t know how my camera saga would end on that late Sunday afternoon of the last day of the NKP 767 in the valley.

I had the same thought that I always do after making my last images of the day. Will this be the final time that I see NKP 765, 767 or whatever they choose to number it on the CVSR?

Thus far the Berkshire-type 2-8-4 has returned every September since 2013. But one of these years it might not.

As was the case in 2015, I ended my 2016 chase feeling slightly unfulfilled. I had missed the goldenrod field shot along with a few other locations. I still regret not going for the ferry move on the last Sunday morning.

But if the NKP 765 never returns to the CVSR again, I’ll be satisfied with the body of work that I was able to produce of that locomotive running through the Cuyahoga River Valley.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

I ended up liking this shot at Jaite better than a similiar image I had made at this spot a week earlier.

I decided that I like this shot at Jaite better than a similar image I had made at this spot a week earlier.

Passing the south switch of Jaite siding.

Passing the south switch of Jaite siding. It almost looks like the locomotive is leading rather than trailing.

I ended up liking this "preliminary" image of NKP 767 along the Cuyahoga River in Brecksville than I did the image I set out to create here.

In the end, I thought this “preliminary” image that I made of NKP 767 along the Cuyahoga River in Brecksville is better than I the image I set had out to create here.

The opening between the trees and brush growing alongside the Cuyahoga River at Brecksville was smaller than I expected and not all of the NKP 767 fit in that opening.

The opening between the trees and brush growing along the Cuyahoga River at Brecksville was not quite wide enough to fit all of the NKP 767.

 Crossing the Cuyahoga River south of Peninsula in a duplication of a image I've made a few times with NKP 765. Oh, wait, this is NKP 765 but with a different number.

Crossing the Cuyahoga River south of Peninsula in a duplication of an image I’ve made a few times with NKP 765. Oh, wait, this is NKP 765 but with a different number. This location never gets old with me.

The towpath trail is just off the nose of NKP 767 as it nears Deep Lock Quarry.

Getting the wide angle view near Deep Lock Quarry. The towpath trail is just off the nose of NKP 767, which is crossing over the trail.

The light at the ARRC picnic site was not as favorable as I expected when the NKP 767 and its train went north for the afternoon trip out of Akron. So I got creative with the nearby leaves.

The lighting conditions at the ARRC picnic site were not as favorable as I expected when the NKP 767 and its train went north for the afternoon trip out of Akron. So I got creative with these leaves.

NKP 767 runs backwards alongside Riverview Road near the Columbia Run Picnic Area. This shot turned out fine, but a malfunction of my zoom lens meant that the telephoto shots I made here were blurry.

NKP 767 runs backward alongside Riverview Road near the Columbia Run Picnic Area. This shot turned out well, but a malfunction of my zoom lens meant that the telephoto shots I made here were blurry.

Fortunately, the autofocus and zoom functions of my lens both worked for my last image of the NKP 767 on the CVSR. The train is approaching Bath Road.

Fortunately, the autofocus and zoom functions of my lens were working when I made my last image of the NKP 767 on the CVSR. The train is approaching Bath Road. It was a good way to end my chase of the 767.

AOS Buys Another Locomotive

October 7, 2016

Jerry Jacobson owns another steam locomotive. His Age of Steam Roundhouse purchased Yreka Western 2-8-2 No. 19 during a sheriff’s sale on Thursday in California.

Age of SteamAOS won out over the Valley Railroad of Essex, Connecticut, the only other bidder for the locomotive.

Trains magazine reported that the winning bid of AOS was $400,000.

The sale of the locomotive happened after the Chelatchie Boiler Works of Woodland, Washington, placed a lien on it for $264,000.

Chelatchie acted after not being paid for boiler work that it performed in 2006. By a 2013 court order, No. 19 was confined to its engine house.

A sheriff’s sale had been set for October 2013, but was called off when the previous operators of the Yreka Western alleged that they had a superior line on the locomotive.

Under terms of the sale, AOS will have two weeks to move the locomotive from its current location.

AOS officials told Trains they plan to load loose parts onto a truck and contract with a trucking company to move the locomotive on a low-boy trailer.

The tender will be taken by truck to Sugar Creek while the engine will move to Sacramento, California, where it will be placed on a railroad flat car for transport to Ohio.

The AOS owns another former McCloud River Railroad steam locomotives, No. 9, which it purchased last year from Steve Butler.

No. 19 last operated in November 2008. It appeared in the 1973 move Emperor of the North with Lee Marvin and Ernest Borgnine.

It also once ran on the Oregon, Pacific & Eastern Railroad.

Chasing that NKP 767: Part 1

October 5, 2016
The northbound ferry move of the steam train meets the southbound Scenic in Peninsula in late afternoon on Sunday, Sept. 18.

The northbound ferry move of the steam train meets the southbound Scenic in Peninsula in late afternoon on Sunday, Sept. 18.

Heavy clouds ruled the skies as I made my way southward on Interstate 271 toward the Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

Would the overcast conditions keep some photographers away from the second day of Nickel Plate Road No. 765 operating as No. 767?

When the news broke that the 765 would be operating on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad as No. 767 I figured the number of trackside photographers would increase because of the novelty factor.

In recent years many guys seem to have had a “been there, done that” attitude toward NKP 765 on the CVSR. Hard core steam aficionados turned out, but casual photographers stayed home.

There were photographers track side on Sunday, Sept. 18, but not as many as I had expected.

My first stop was Indigo Lake where I sought to duplicate an image I made in 2010 during the first visit of NKP 765 to the Cuyahoga River Valley. It was the first time I had seen the 765 in action other than the time in 1993 when it ran as Chesapeake & Ohio No. 2765.

As I arrived, the clouds were breaking up. It would be sun and clouds the remainder of the day.

From Indigo Lake I went to Boston Mill where it’s tough to get a good image due to the fences and other security designed to keep those without tickets confined to Boston Park south of the CVSR station or on the west side of Riverview Road.

I tried to be creative, getting a view that no one else apparently considered.

I was able to create my top human-interest photo of the day, showing a boy with a bottle of soda sitting next to his grandmother as the train backed up to return to Boston Mill station.

I posted those images on the ARRC blog earlier. The images that accompany this post are my “best of the rest” photos from Sept. 18.

My general strategy was to duplicate my favorite images of past years of NKP 765.

That was an impossible objective given how places I’ve photographed the 765 during its visits in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2015.

After the runbys, I went to Jaite to photograph the train going in both directions. I saw former Akron Railroad Club member John Puda, who I had not seen in a few years.

Every visit of the NKP 765/767 is a little different. A signature trait of the 2016 excursions was how each trip involved meeting the CVSR Scenic in Peninsula twice.

That enabled me to get ahead of the train to Deep Lock Quarry on its return to Akron. If I had to choose one photo location to capture a steam train on the CVSR, this would be it.

The steamer is coming upgrade and working. The sound show is magnificent. It’s also a steep uphill climb from track level to the parking lot

I spent the break between excursions in Peninsula where I would get the steam train meeting the Scenic at 1:45 p.m.

It would be tough – if not impractical – to get the photograph I really wanted, which was a straight-down-the tracks shot of the locomotives nose by nose.

A steam locomotive in Peninsula always attracts a crowd and some daisy picker will jump out in front of you. What I accomplished was reasonably close to what I wanted.

The downside of photographing in Peninsula is that it takes time to get out of town.

The Scenic has you blocked, the route out of town is circuitous, and there is heavy traffic to navigate.

I was able to get one of the photo runbys at Boston Mill. I was even able to sit just inside the guardrail on the east side of Riverview beyond the fenced off area.

That perspective would not be available the following weekend due to a heavy police presence, so it was good that I took advantage of it on this day.

I chatted with fellow ARRC member Todd Dillon who would be the only current club member I would see all day. A few other ARRC members were trackside, but I didn’t see them.

After the runby, I motored to Brecksville, getting the coming and going of the train at the Chippewa Creek bridge.

I had enough time to get to Indigo Lake, but had to park in the trailer park because the Indigo Lake lot was filled.

The conditions on this day were among the best I’d seen with the water calm  enough to produce a nearly perfect mirror image.

I guessed the steam train would deadhead to the CVSR’s Fitzwater maintenance facility after unloading passengers at Akron.

I was correct and my last photo op of the day was the meet with the Scenic in Peninsula, the fifth time during the day that that occurred.

I stuck around to photograph the Scenic leaving and spotted former ARRC member Gary Spencer in the vestibule of a car on the Scenic.

A day that began with unfavorable weather ended with nearly ideal conditions. Somehow the rain in the region stayed away during the afternoon.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

Well, of course, I had to get an image of NKP 767 with the iconic Ohio Route 82 bridge in the background at Brecksville.

Of course, I had to get an image of NKP 767 with the iconic Ohio Route 82 bridge in the background at Brecksville.

The onlookers are along the fence on the trail to Deep Lock Quarry as the NKP 767 approaches.

The onlookers are along the fence on the trail to Deep Lock Quarry as the NKP 767 approaches.

A wave from one crew member as the train made its ways south at Jaite.

A wave from a crew member as the train makes its ways south at Jaite.

Passing through Jaite.

Passing through Jaite.

I liked how the engineer and fireman were visible in this image at Boston Mill during a photo runby. Getting closeups like this often the best photo ops available there.

I liked how the engineer and fireman were visible in this image at Boston Mill during a photo runby. Getting closeups like this is often the best photo op available there.

My first look at NKP 765 as NKP 767 was at Indigo Lake. I chose this location because this was where I had photographed NKP 765 in action on the CVSR for the first time back in September 2010.

My first look at NKP 765 as NKP 767 was at Indigo Lake. I chose this location because this was where I had photographed NKP 765 in action on the CVSR for the first time back in September 2010.

NKP 767 leaves Indigo Lake behind in a cloud of coal smoke.

NKP 767 leaves Indigo Lake behind in a cloud of coal smoke.