Seeking the Elusive Orange Engine(s).

New England Central 3015 on the Prowl.

New England Central 3015.
New England Central’s elusive GP40L 3015 pierces the gloom at Palmer with its headlights. Time exposure with Canon EOS 7D fitted with f2.8 200mm lens.

It’s always nice to be the first to catch a freshly painted locomotive on its maiden run. Or, failing that, to at least see it in its first few days of operation. Or weeks.

When you regularly observe railway operations, often you get lucky and stumble upon new things as they happen.

When I’m in New England, I regularly check New England Central to see what’s going on. I’ve been observing the railroad on and off since its days as the Central Vermont. My earlier posts have reflected this on-going interest.

Lately, it seemed as just about everyone has seen one of the railroad’s freshly painted orange engines . Everyone, that is, except me.

A few months ago, Genesee & Wyoming took control of New England Central’s parent company, Rail America, and to make its mark on the new properties it rapidly began placing locomotives in G&W corporate colors.

I’ve been familiar with Genesee & Wyoming since the days when its was just a New York State short line moving salt from the mine Retsof for interchange with Conrail.

My normally good luck didn’t favor my photography of G&W locomotives on New England Central. Much to my astonishment, just about everyone I know seems to have had better luck with seeing orange engines than I.

A few weeks back, I had a fortuitous meeting with the retired Central Vermont trainmaster at the bank. He was delighted to report having seen an orange engine roll through town, and keenly advised me to ‘get some pictures, quick, before it gets dirty’. Thanks. I’ll work on that.

Yet, every time I’ve swung by the yard, or rolled by a freight, I’d see the same old blue and yellow GP38s that have ruled the railroad for 18 years. Or perhaps some of the recently acquired former Union Pacific or Florida East Coast engines.

One night a few weeks back, I’d been in Palmer, but skipped my normal visit trackside (owing to rain and the late hour—not that this ever gave me pause before!).

I was informed the next morning that the elusive orange engine had been by the yard office, just out of sight. Poor show (on my part.)

Last friday I was again in Palmer (Massachusetts) to meet Rich Reed, Bill Keay & co. for dinner. Before dinner I stopped by the station. I heard a local working, and looked in my rear view mirror. And there! There it was! I made a few photos, and then returned later to make night shots.

New England Central 3015.
At last, an orange engine, and holding still long enough for a time exposure portrait.
Lumix LX3 photo.

Luck, after all, improves with time. Right?

 

Caption:

New England Central’s elusive GP40L 3015 pierces the gloom at Palmer with its headlights. Time exposure with Canon EOS 7D fitted with f2.8 200mm lens.

 

At last, an orange engine, and holding still long enough for a time exposure portrait.

Lumix LX3 photo.

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