Posts Tagged ‘Sunset photography’

Sunset in Olmsted Falls

August 12, 2021

I switched to digital photography in late July 2011 and my early weeks in the digital world were spent seeing what my camera could do.

On Sept. 24, 2011, I spent some time photographing Norfolk Southern trains in Olmsted Falls. My time there extended into the darkness hours so I tried my hand at some sunset images.

NS cooperated by sending an eastbound my way just as the sun was hovering above the trees in the distance. Here was the result.

Sunset at Scipio

December 23, 2020

It was the end of what had been a long and productive day of railfanning on the CSX Willard Subdivision and Sandusky District of Norfolk Southern in July 2008.

There were still a couple more CSX trains to catch, including a grain train and a coke train. The light was fading fast.

But I had one more image to make. You are looking westward on the former Baltimore & Ohio mainline near Scipo, Ohio.

When the sun gets low you can always go for glint shots and sunset images. If executed well, they make dramatic photographs.

Article and Photograph by Craig Sanders

Sunset on the NS Fort Wayne Line

November 12, 2016



It was late on a Sunday and Marty Surdyk and I were headed for home after an afternoon railfannng the Fort Wayne Line of Norfolk Southern east of Alliance.

It has been a productive day that had netted a number of trains at the Garfield sag and the NS executive train in Salem.

I thought I was done photographing for the day, but that wasn’t the case. As we came back through Salem from Leetonia, the gates came down and an eastbound NS tanker train came along.

The sun was setting at the time and on a whim, I jumped out of the passenger seat of Marty’s Jeep and made this image.

We had to cross the Fort Wayne Line again near Garfield and I asked him to stop so I could try my hand at the sunset colors in a down-the-tracks view.

The image didn’t turn out as well as I had hoped it would because there just wasn’t a lot of color in this sunset. But it was something and it would turn out to be the last photograph that I made on this day.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

Sunset on the NS Toledo District

August 31, 2016

_DSC5962 NS Toledo dist sunset RES

You could sit trackside for hours on the Toledo District of Norfolk Southern northwest of Oak Harbor and not see a train.

Although an important route to NS, it is not the railroad’s major traffic artery in and out of Toledo. But it is the only route into Toledo used by the Wheeling & Lake Erie, which has a pair of trains each day on the line that interchange traffic with Canadian National.

That the route is important to the Wheeling seems appropriate because it is part of the original W&LE route between Toledo and Wheeling, West Virginia.

It fell into the hands of the Nickel Plate Road when that railroad acquired the W&LE in 1949. Of course the NKP was acquired by the Norfolk & Western which evolved into Norfolk Southern.

For a few days in July, the sun sets right down the Toledo District tracks near Oak Harbor. But you need to know when that is in order to gt it.

Photographer Peter Bowler was a little late this year, but he still came home with a very nice image.

Photograph by Peter Bowler

Colorful Sunset in Berea

March 18, 2016

Berea sunset1-x

By the time I got to Berea, the light of day had begun to rapidly diminish. I had just over two hours to kill before going to the meeting of the Railroad Enthusiasts and had brought my camera along.

You just never know what you might see that you’ll want to photograph.

The skies had been a mixture of blue and clouds, which would turn out to be an advantage as the last rays of light peaked over the horizon.

Getting the most colorful images during a sunset is a combination of art and science, but one key is to understand that those vivid colors are going to be very short-lived.

Nearly as soon as nature puts on a display of brilliant colors, they are taken away. You better move fast and you better have some luck if you hope to juxtapose a sunset with a moving train.

I caught a little of everything during my time in Berea with the help of a westbound CSX auto rack train.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

The lead unit of a westbound CSX auto rack train.

The lead unit of a westbound CSX auto rack train.

A "fiery" auto rack. The effect is created by sunlight coming through crevices and openings.

A “fiery” auto rack. The effect is created by sunlight coming through crevices and openings.

Chasing the setting sun toward the Greenwich Subdivision of CSX.

Chasing the setting sun toward the Greenwich Subdivision of CSX.

Compare and contrast this image with the one below. The colors of a sunset can vary in the span of a few minutes.

Compare and contrast this image with the one below. The colors of a sunset can vary in the span of a few minutes.

Berea sunset6-x

Sunset in Olmsted Falls

March 4, 2016

Sunset in Olmsted Falls2

Sunset in Olmsted Falls

I’ve always had a fondness for sunset photography. I enjoy viewing a good sunset photograph and I enjoy trying my hand at making sunset photographs.

You will find far more sunset images in my collection than sunrise photographs. I’m not one for getting up in the middle of the night to travel to an open area to photograph the sun rise.

But when possible I like to stay out long enough to see it set.

Here are a couple of images I made at Olmsted Falls in September 2011. They are among my earliest works after I went digital.

Digital photography works well with sunset photography because you can make numerous shots and see right away what adjustments you need to make.

In the top photograph, an eastbound Norfolk Southern manifest freight is on Track No. 2. The bottom photograph is the same train, but toward the middle of the consist as I zoomed in on it.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

Sunset Over Belluevue

June 26, 2015

Bellevue sunset-x

The sun has sunk below the horizon in Bellevue, Ohio. The water tower you see silhouetted against the sky sits near the entrance to the Norfolk Southern yard. Look carefully to the right of the tower and you can make out the outline of the hump tower in the yard.

The air is still, but the sounds of flanges pressing against rails can be heard in the near distance. It may be the end of the day for most people, but in the newly renamed Moorman Yard, the works on goes on all night long as trains continue to roll in and cars need to be switched and sorted.

On the railroad time just goes on. There is always more work to be done whether it be day or night.

Photograph by Craig Sanders

Golden Rails

August 8, 2014

Golden Rails

It was getting late. The rain clouds had moved out and the sun was shining again. Time to get up on the Jackson Street bridge in Amherst over the Norfolk Southern Chicago Line and get some late day light on the noses of westbound traffic. NS cooperated by sending a number of westbounds our way.

Between trains I watched with interest the setting sun reflecting on the rails to the west of the bridge, which is at milepost 213. It was time to experiment and create something out of the ordinary. I was pleased with the results. The track at the far left is No. 2 whereas the track at far right is a controlled siding that leads to Fairlane Yard.

Photograph by Craig Sanders