Posts Tagged ‘winter railfanning’

B&O F7A in Kent

June 25, 2021

Baltimore & Ohio F7A No. 4580 is eastbound in Kent in the late 1960s. On the left side, a small portion of the B&O passenger station can be seen.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Super Outing, Super Memories

June 4, 2021

Marty Surdyk, Craig Sanders and myself had a super bowl hours before the NFL game started on February 2, 2014.. All of our photos from that day were all keepers thanks to the unique weather conditions from that day. I miss seeing the “late” former Nickel Plate Road trestle every time I see Norfolk Southern train 206 in the top photo. Seeing NS train 145 in the middle and bottom images always brings a smile to my face.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

Still Standing

January 15, 2021

Over the years I photographed CSX trains passing beneath this signal bridge at the far west end of the yard in Ashtabula.

But with the conversion to positive train control, CSX like many Class 1 railroads, decided to replace many older signals on busy main lines with newer signals.

In some instances, the new signals were in a different location than the signals they replaced.

Such was the case in Ashtabula. As you can see, the new signals are closer to the yard itself.

This image was made near sunset on a very cold January day in 2018. I was hoping to get a westbound coming into that late day light but had no such luck.

But it made for a nice image anyway. I haven’t been back to this location since making this image so I don’t know if this old signal bridge that dates to the New York Central years is still standing or has been removed.

Snowy Siding in Boughtonville

January 8, 2021

It is afternoon in Boughtonville on a sunny January winter day in 2011. We’ve heard there is a westbound CSX manifest freight coming and have set up to capture it.

The train is stopped just beyond a grade crossing to wait for a signal at the crossovers in Boughtonville.

I decided to try something different in my composition by getting low and featuring the derail on a siding leading to a grain elevator.

I have a hunch this siding is seldom used but it was still in service at the time.

Photograph by Craig Sanders

After the Storm

December 2, 2020

Winter storms that dump six to 12 inches of snow are not unusual in Northeast Ohio. If you can get out of your driveway today the sunshine that will grace the region will lead to opportunities for some dramatic winter railroad images.

This photograph was made Jan. 16, 2012, following a storm that buried Lake County in more than a foot of snow.

Ed Ribinskas and I ventured out to Perry to photograph trains on CSX and Norfolk Southern. Shown is an eastbound CSX intemodal train kicking up the snow as it charges along.

Within about a day or so the passage of trains at track speed will likely blow most of the snow off the rails and diminish the blowing show effect.

Until then some memorable photographs are waiting to be created.

 

Railfanning and Minor League Hockey

November 29, 2020

Few people in Northeast Ohio have probably heard of the Mentor Ice Breakers, a minor league hockey franchise in Mentor that shut down recently after playing just two seasons.

The Ice Breakers were in the Federal Prospects Hockey League and played their games in the small, but intimate Mentor Civic Center.

Ed Ribinskas, Marty Surdyk and I attended a pair of Ice Breaker games in March 2019.

Both games faced off on a Sunday afternoon and afterwards we went out to dinner at a local restaurant before heading home.

I’ll always associate watching the Ice Breakers play with railfanning before the games.

Ed and I went out before the first game, getting as far east as Albion, Pennsylvania, after chasing a train there from Conneaut on the former Bessemer & Lake Erie.

Marty joined us for some railfanning before the second game on a day that featured dramatic winter weather even though it was officially spring.

It had rained and then snowed overnight, leaving a coating of white on nearly everything.

We caught quite a few trains that day on the CSX Erie West Subdivision and the NS Lake Erie District, including a work train with a caboose.

Ice Breakers owner Dan Moon told the News-Herald that he and business partner Chris Brynarski lost more than $500,000 operating the team during its two-year existence.

Although they thought about suspending operations for the 2020-2021 season as two other teams in the league have done, after looking into it they decided it wasn’t financially feasible.

Ed and his wife, Ursula, attended several Ice Breakers games including what turned out to be the final one played before the COVID-19 pandemic hit last March and shut down the league.

“I’m glad we had the chance to see a few games while they existed,” he wrote in an email. “I know Ursula and myself enjoyed it very much.

“[I] never would have realized the game I saw with Marty back in March would be the last game the team would play.”

In the top image, CSX westbound intermodal train Q009 kicks up some snow as it passes through a winter wonderland near Unionville on March 31, 2019.

In the middle image, an eastbound CSX train led by a pair of Union Pacific units passes the Nickel Plate Road Berkshire-type steam locomotive on static display in Conneaut on March 10, 2019.

In the bottom image, the Ice Breakers celebrate after scoring the winning goal in a game that featured an improbable ending.

With a minute left in the game and the Danville (Illinois) Dashers holding a 7-5 lead, it looked like the home team would lose yet again.

But the Dashers committed two minor penalties and the Ice Breakers scored twice, including the game-tying goal with 4.5 seconds left to play.

In overtime, Mentor scored on a breakaway at the 1:04 mark to win in sudden death.

I don’t know if any of the Ice Breakers made or will ever make a National Hockey League roster, but they provided inexpensive entertainment on the two Sunday afternoons that I saw them play.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

Snowy Day in Akron on the B&O

September 11, 2020

It’s snowing in downtown Akron as Baltimore & Ohio GP30 No. 6915 leads an eastbound past the Erie Lackawanna station in the late 1960s or early 1970s.

Trailing is another GP30 along with an F7B, F7B, and F7B.

As this image was posted in mid July a snow storm might be a welcome relief from temperatures in the 90s and a heat index in triple digits.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Winter Arrives Early, LSL Arrives Late

November 13, 2018

Akron Railroad Club member Ed Ribinskas write that he did his first winter photography earlier this week. He landed the new Amtrak Phase II heritage unit at about 10:40 a.m. as a trailing unit in a 4-hour late eastbound Lake Shore Limited.

In the top image, not the Painesville sign on the former New York Central station, which has been undergoing restoration.

Ed also reported that the old Nickel Plate Road trestle over the Grand River is now completely gone.

Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

Man Was it Cold That Day

October 8, 2018

It’s late afternoon in the middle of January. Snow covers the ground and temperatures are well below freezing.

Peter Bowler and myself had gone looking for winter photographs along the Lake Erie shore.

We were in Conneaut where we spotted a young railfan standing next to a crossing by the former New York Central depot, which is now a museum.

Maybe he knew about something was coming. He did. It was a westbound CSX manifest freight with a Union Pacific unit in the lead.

We parked and walked over to the crossing. A headlight was already visible in the distance.

In January the sun is pretty low in the sky, particularly late in the day. The nice thing about that is the warm light it provides. The problem, though, is that the low sun angle means that trees, buildings and other objects will cast shadows.

Not only that, but it will exaggerate the proportions of those shadows. Note how in the sequence above our shadows might us appear to be taller than retired NBA great Shaquille O’Neal.

In the heat of summer it can be easy to forget the cold of winter. But it won’t be too long before we’ll be reminded of that again.

Frozen Grand River

September 21, 2018

There are winter photographs and then there are winter photographs. It takes a prolonged period of very cold temperatures to freeze a river.

That was the case last January with the Grand River in Painesville. I had visited the CSX concrete arch bridge over the Grand River on a Sunday.

There was plenty of snow and even some hoarfrost on the trees along the banks, but the water was flowing freely. A few days later, the river was frozen.